Conquering the Konqueror


Since the Trinity Desktop Environment is based on the original KDE 3.x desktop, one of its cornerstone applications is the Konqueror file manager/browser. Now, although Konqueror hasn’t aged very well as a web browser (as development for it has stopped long ago), I think it’s still a very powerful and useful file manager.

In this review, I’m going to cover the functionality that I think demonstrates some of Konqueror’s strengths and why I’m glad it is still part of TDE.

Moving Quickly Around The File System

In order to save myself some time, when working with the files on my hard drive, I use Konqueror’s Navigational menu to move quickly from one directory to another. I’ve simply bookmarked my most frequently visited file folders and use the Navigation menu to save myself a few mouse-clicks.

To do this, first bring up the Navigational menu by pressing F9 or by selecting the menu items Window > Folders. Then, click on the Bookmarks tab from the menu, along the left margin of the window (it’s indicated by a star icon). In the main window, navigate into the file folder you wish you bookmark and, once you’re there, click on the menu items Bookmarks > Add Bookmark. You can also use the shortcut CTRL+D, if you wish.

That’s it! Now, the next time you wish to access that file folder, select it from your bookmarks in the Navigation menu.

You also have the ability to change how you view your files, whether it be as icons, or a list, in a single window showing one directory, or a split screen showing more than one directory at a time. You can also use tabs to access many different locations and views, all in one window.

One Program With Many Profiles

A feature that I think makes Konqueror very unique is the ability to set-up different “profiles” for different situations/purposes. For example, if I regularly transfer files from my digital camera to a particular folder on my desktop, I could set up a particular split window view, with one window listing the contents of my camera and one window listing the Photos folder on my PC. I could then save this view as a profile, in Konqueror.

The next time I come to upload photos from my camera, I just have to launch Konqueror with the specified profile, and all I need to do then is drag and drop the photos from my camera to the desktop. The proper folders will already be in front of me, which saves me from having to navigate to the folders, first.

To make the use of profiles even easier, you can launch Konqueror and specify a profile from the command line by typing:

$ konqueror --profile name_of_your_profile

You can also do this from the desktop by creating a new “link to application” icon and use the same command to launch Konqueror.  You can find the Profiles controls by clicking on the Settings option in the top menu bar.  From here, you can Load, Save, and Configure your Profiles.

Konqueror Is “The Man”

If you’ve been using the Linux OS for any significant length of time, you’ve probably been exposed (at least once) to the terminal help screens referred to as “man pages” When learning about Linux commands, these man pages are indispensable, but can be difficult to read and follow sometimes.

Konqueror has a very helpful feature that makes reading man pages easier, allowing you to find your answers quicker. For this example, let’s say we wanted to read up on how to use ffmpeg. In Konqueror’s Location bar (the place where you’d type in a URL or directory path), type in man:ffmpeg and then press ENTER. What this will bring up is a very nicely formatted screen of the man page for ffmpeg.  Of course, ffmpeg would first have be installed on your system.

Headings and command options are clearly highlighted, and personally, I find these versions of the man pages much easier to read and follow than simply using a terminal window.

Selecting Files Using Wildcards

So, you’d like to copy, move, or delete a bunch of your image files from the contents of a file folder, but you don’t want to have to look through your file directory to select them all? Not a problem. Simply click on the Konqueror menu items: Edit > Selection > Select... and in the window that pops up, type in the wildcard expression for the files you’re looking for (eg: *.jpg – This will select every file with a .jpg extension). Every file that meets the criteria you entered will be selected within the current file folder.

Once your files are highlighted and selected, you can then do the maintenance you need to do, like Copy, Move, Delete, etc.  You can do this by either clicking on Edit from the top menu bar, or right-mouse-click on one of the highlighted files an select the task from the pop-up menu that appears.

Zip Your Files In Two Clicks

Now that I have the files I want to work with highlighted, it’s really easy for me to move, copy, or delete them. But it’s also very easy for me to make a backup of them. All I need to do is right-mouse click on one of them and select Compress from the pop-up menu. I then choose the type of backup file I want from the menu and Konqueror does the rest.

Viewing what is in an archive file and/or un-compressing it is just as easy.  To view the contents of the file, simply double click on it. Konqueror will give you a directory listing of the files that it contains. To un-compress/expand it, simply right-mouse-click on the file and select Extract from the pop-up menu.

Hopefully this review has shown you a few things about Konqueror of which you may not have been aware. It hasn’t aged very well as a web browser, but for a file manager, it still has a lot to give. There’s much more to it than what I’ve covered here. Give it a try and see if there’s any hidden potential that you can use for your daily computing needs.

And for more tips on using Konqueror, check out TDE’s FAQ page, HERE.

Join the Conversation

  1. I still LOVE the fully integrated file finder too, and use it extensively

    “Fish” (?) option to get to network resources comes to mind also as a
    delightful productivity boost.

    Tried doing modern WebDAV transfers without success though. Working on that.

    Regrettable tendency seen seen now in recent Distros to “deprecate” it in favour
    of the loathsome replacement Dolphin; drill down multi-level menus backported to Konq
    was NOT a pleasant finding when setting up detail fields for file listings.

    One instance ( Debian Buster ) of KDE konqueror seen was completely unrecognizable
    as a file manager, I gave up on it there in in later Ubuntu LYS VMs for Thunar as a
    backup / alternative when KDE was not a Desktop choice at all.

    1. Yes, Konqueror does have an excellent file search. I use FISH quite a bit, too. Glad to hear that there are still some of us out there using this excellent piece of software.