KDE Font problem in Ubuntu 20.04

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KDE Font problem in Ubuntu 20.04

Christoph Pleger-2
Hello,

a few days ago, I installed Ubuntu 20.04 from the default installation DVD.
Afterwards, I additionally installed packages plasma-workspace, sddm and kde-
full. Then I rebooted, so that the sddm login screen was shown, with breeze as
theme. Unfortunately, I found that the login screen had two problems:

1. Text is either not displayed at all or in a yellow with a font
that I would say the test is illegible, but possibly some words can be
guessed.

2. The action buttons (suspend, hibernate, etc.) are not shown, though they
are defined in /usr/share/sddm/themes/breeze/Main.qml.

Then, I started a Plasma session (I was glad that with the bad font I found
the correct menu entry) - in that session, I could not find displayed text
anywhere - in the menu, the application icons were shown, but the application
names were missing.

Yesterday, I performed a new installation, this time with the Kubuntu
Installation DVD. But though SDDM is the default graphical login manager of
Kubuntu, the situation is even worse there - on the login screen, even the
arrow to click on for opening the session selection list (for choosing Plasma,
or Gnome, etc.) is not shown.

What's wrong? On a machine with Debian 10, which is probably quite similar to
Ubuntu 20.04,  I initially had the same problems with SDMM, but after
installing additional packages the problems were solved - but I guess that
these were about 2000  additional packages (I had copied the package list from
another computer where the problems did not occur) and I have no idea which
package(s) of these provided the solution.

Best wishes
  Christoph



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Re: KDE Font problem in Ubuntu 20.04

Liam Proven
On Wed, 2 Sep 2020 at 10:12, Christoph Pleger
<[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Hello,
>
> a few days ago, I installed Ubuntu 20.04 from the default installation DVD.
> Afterwards, I additionally installed packages plasma-workspace, sddm and kde-
> full. Then I rebooted, so that the sddm login screen was shown, with breeze as
> theme. Unfortunately, I found that the login screen had two problems:
>
> 1. Text is either not displayed at all or in a yellow with a font
> that I would say the test is illegible, but possibly some words can be
> guessed.

What make and model of computer do you have? What GPU or graphics card
does it have?

Have you installed any graphics driver for it? Can you do so?

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Re: KDE Font problem in Ubuntu 20.04

Christoph Pleger-2
On 2020-09-02 19:01, Andy Smith wrote:

> On Wed, 2 Sep 2020 at 10:12, Christoph Pleger
>
> <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > Hello,
> >
> > a few days ago, I installed Ubuntu 20.04 from the default installation
> > DVD.
> > Afterwards, I additionally installed packages plasma-workspace, sddm and
> > kde- full. Then I rebooted, so that the sddm login screen was shown, with
> > breeze as theme. Unfortunately, I found that the login screen had two
> > problems:
> >
> > 1. Text is either not displayed at all or in a yellow with a font
> > that I would say the test is illegible, but possibly some words can be
> > guessed.
>
> What make and model of computer do you have? What GPU or graphics card
> does it have?
>
> Have you installed any graphics driver for it? Can you do so?

Sorry for the very late answer; I've been ill for a long time.

I am using a VirtualBox virtual machine. lspci says that the VM has a VMware
SVGA II adapter and the driver package xserver-xorg-video-vmware is installed.

Regards
  Christoph



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Re: KDE Font problem in Ubuntu 20.04

Liam Proven
On Tue, 20 Oct 2020 at 11:09, Christoph Pleger
<[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Sorry for the very late answer; I've been ill for a long time.

Sorry to hear that.
>
> I am using a VirtualBox virtual machine. lspci says that the VM has a VMware
> SVGA II adapter and the driver package xserver-xorg-video-vmware is installed.

For a VirtualBox guest _with hardware acceleration_ there are usually
just 2 things to do. I described them in a blog post:

https://liam-on-linux.livejournal.com/33987.html

Note: I mention Unity3D and GNOME 3 there, because I got them working
well this way. In my tests, I observed screen corruption with KDE.
However, note that that blog post is 7 years old (!). Perhaps the KDE
team have fixed this now.

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Re: KDE Font problem in Ubuntu 20.04

Christoph Pleger-2
Hello,

Liam Proven wrote:

> For a VirtualBox guest _with hardware acceleration_ there are usually
> just 2 things to do. I described them in a blog post:
>
> https://liam-on-linux.livejournal.com/33987.html
>
> Note: I mention Unity3D and GNOME 3 there, because I got them working
> well this way. In my tests, I observed screen corruption with KDE.
> However, note that that blog post is 7 years old (!). Perhaps the KDE
> team have fixed this now.

Hm, obviously, the problem is really caused by the 3D acceleration setting in
the the settings for the VirtualBox VM; when I disable the acceleration, the
problem disappears. But I wonder why the problem occurs with acceleration, I
have the guest additions installed (I installed the manually, not from the
distributed package), modules vboxvideo and vmwgfx are loaded, and /var/log/
Xorg.0.log says that the VMware driver is used.

Regards
  Christoph



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Re: KDE Font problem in Ubuntu 20.04

Liam Proven
On Wed, 21 Oct 2020 at 11:23, Christoph Pleger
<[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Hm, obviously, the problem is really caused by the 3D acceleration setting in
> the the settings for the VirtualBox VM; when I disable the acceleration, the
> problem disappears.

I don't think that is a safe conclusion to draw. All we can say in
confidence is that the problem _occurs in association_ with VBox's
acceleration.

It works fine with every other 3D-composited desktop I've tried.

> But I wonder why the problem occurs with acceleration, I
> have the guest additions installed (I installed the manually, not from the
> distributed package), modules vboxvideo and vmwgfx are loaded,

Note that Vbox 3D is complicated. It is not VBox doing the
acceleration; it is VBox attempting to pass through the host systems'
3D acceleration functionality into the guest. Host/guest passthrough
is complex and difficult. It is mostly done in high-end server
hypervisors such as VMware, MS Hyper-V, KVM and so on -- and usually
then, the device passed through to the guest is dedicated to the
guest. With OpenGL passthrough, the graphics card must be shared with
the host, making it even more difficult.

So, it could be a bug in VBox, yes, but it could also be a bug in KDE
and the way it's calling OpenGL. I have also had problems with KDE in
VMs even with 3D disabled. I suspect it does odd nonstandard stuff
with 3D calls.

> and /var/log/
> Xorg.0.log says that the VMware driver is used.

There is a possible troubleshooting path there: VBox offers 2 or 3
different guest virtual graphics adaptors. Try the other ones?

My response to this problem is to avoid using 3D-rendered desktops in
VMs, at all, ever -- and to recommend to friends and colleagues that
they avoid using them as well.

The main 3D-rendered desktops are or were:
• Ubuntu Unity-3D (note 1: not the games programming toolkit of the
same name; note 2: there was a Unity-2D but it was discontinued)
• GNOME 3
• Cinnamon

The widespread ones that are not:
• MATE (can be enabled/disabled on demand)
• XFCE (ditto)
• LXDE/LXQt

KDE _says_ it can be disabled but when I have seen screen-corruption
issues, enabling/disabling compositing makes no visible difference.

I evaluate KDE periodically (along with all the other main desktops)
but the result of my evaluation is that I choose not to use KDE.

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