Linux Mint – Utilizing Activities and Virtual Desktops

File Management Commands in Linux

Another of KDE’s extensive features is known as Activities. You may be familiar with Virtual Desktops (also known as Workspaces), which is a concept used in practically every Linux desktop environment. With Virtual Desktops, you can have completely separate screens running different applications. KDE allows you to utilize Virtual Desktops as well, but the feature is disabled by default. In System Settings (KDE’s configuration tool), you can click on Workspace Behavior and then Virtual Desktops and enable Virtual Desktops by changing the number of available desktops to any number greater than 1. To switch between Virtual Desktops, you can add the Pager Plasmoid to your panel to easily switch between them. After enabling it, the concept works the same here as it does in other environments. However, KDE actually takes this a step further.

Activities is a concept very similar to Virtual Desktops, but it offers additional features. With Activities, you also have a separate set of running applications per Activity, just as you would with a virtual desktop. However, with Activities, you can select applications to automatically open whenever you switch to that specific Activity. For example, imagine creating a Music Activity and having Amarok automatically open when you switch to it, or a Photo Management Activity that automatically opens your preferred folder editor.

Both Activities and Virtual Desktops have a specific Plasmoid that helps you to switch between them. For Virtual Desktops, you can add the Pager Plasmoid to your panel. For Activities, you can add the Activities Plasmoid. Once added, you can easily add a new virtual desktop or Activity and switch between them. Essentially, this allows you to switch between more than one complete workflow, and the concept works best when you design an Activity around a specific task.

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