I’ve started looking into KDEPIM 4.6 on Kubuntu Natty to see if it can be made less annoying to use. There are two unpopular dialogs which appear when using KDEPIM. Both are telling the user that essential PIM services are not fully operational.
The essential PIM services are Akonadi and Nepomuk. Akonadi provides access to all PIM data (emails, contacts, events etc) the user has. It is started automatically if using a PIM application like KMail2, KAddressBook, KOrganizer, KJots and more. There is no configuration option to turn Akonadi off. Akonadi is a cache server which uses a database like MySQL or SQLite to cache data.
Nepomuk provides indexing and searching capabilities to the PIM infrastructure. If you want to search your email, or use autocompletion when typing in email addresses, you need Nepomuk. These are currently considered essential features for a useful PIM stack, so Akonadi depends on Nepomuk being operational. Unfortunately it can be turned off, and when it is off, that’s when the user gets the two unpopular dialogs.
There may be a case for coming up with a unified framework for how services can depend on each other and give the user the opportunities to start essential dependent services. It might be something to discuss at the Platform 11 sprint.
However, there are things we can change in the short-term that can benefit the user. For one, I’ve turned one of the annoying dialogs into a passive notification using KNotification.
Next I’ll have to consider how to show the other annoying dialog only when attempting to search or autocomplete email addresses…