Resurrecting Yakuake

No use in beating around the bush: Yakuake is currently not in great shape. While the codebase made the jump to KDE Frameworks 5 quite early, it took a long time to get releases out, and the latest still suffers from some annoying, if minor, regressions and bugs. The same is also true for outside code Yakuake heavily relies on - namely Konsole, which unfortunately broke some APIs used by Yakuake, including the one used to invoke the "Manage Profiles" dialog. Meh.

Alongside this there's a more fundamental problem, which is that Yakuake's basic UI code has not aged well. There's some nice things to say about Yakuake's theming system, including a stable file format with unbroken backwards compatibility for more than a decade. But that also hints at the fact that it was designed for systems of that era, and for example can't handle scaling to hi-dpi displays at all.

Fortunately I've been able to secure some honest-to-goodness time over the next couple of months address these problems and thoroughly refurbish the Yakuake codebase, dragging it kicking and screaming into the present day. Here's the cliff notes of the todo:

  • New UI/theming system. This is the big one. The new themes will make extensive use of Qt Quick, adopting some familiar patterns from Plasma theming, and using the KPackage framework for packaging and distribution. This will get us scaling support, allow for more flexible UI arrangements (finally single-bar themes that aren't a gross hack, for one), window shadows, and more. Support for legacy themes will be retained via an internal compatibility theme; they will show up in the config dialog as per usual.
  • Fix Konsole breakage. Konsole's embeddable terminal component has been making Yakuake's life harder with bitrot and broken APIs. I'll go in and fix it.
  • Bugfixes. I'll look into addressing the highest-priority bugs that have been reported against the Frameworks 5 version, including the infamous terminal split focus issue.
  • Wayland. Yakuake mostly works on Wayland, but there's some X11-specific code that yet needs to be cleaned up.

Unfortunately out-of-scope for now will be the often-desired support for session restore; this will need a seperate campaign. But the above will ensure that Yakuake stays with us long enough to enable one.

Watch out for a Yakuake 4.0 deserving of the version bump some time later this year. :)


Not a useful comment bu I just love Yakuake :-)

By Thomas at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 11:38

Awesome. I can't live without Yakuake. It's so much more convenient than needing to keep switching to the Virtual Desktop or Activity with Konsole for short activities.

By Eric Mesa at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 11:41

Thank you for stepping up! This is great news :)

By mcorteel at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 11:55

Just wanted to say thank you, too! It's a very helpful tool in day-to-day work (proposal: use the same key shortcuts as the "original" konsole for tabs). I am looking forward to have a fully themeable wayland konsole, soon ;-)

By OlafLostViking at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 12:36

Thanks for all your work on it =)

By Jan at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 13:00

Thanks for your work on this. Is there any chance Yakuake could receive a feature that lets you keep it pinned open so it doesn't roll back up if you click off of it? Sometimes multitasking can be frustrating when the terminal keeps rolling up (copying/pasting commands from the browser for example).

Glad to hear it's getting some attention. Great work

By Adam at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 14:21

That feature has always been in Yakuake: Click the pin button on the title bar.

By eike hein at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 14:58

I'm happy to read about it :-) , like others, Yakuake is a really useful tool, I'm using git version (with KF5 and Plasma from git too) and happily work well. Thanks to maintain the code and give to users (like me) this tool up-to-date with Plasma environment ..

By desaparecido at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 15:02

Live just wouldn't be the same without Yaquake, thank you for your hard work!

By Eric at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 17:24

I have to add my thanks as well.
Great software, works just fine :-)

By Fanboy at Wed, 10/12/2016 - 19:21