KDE Kolab Client

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Configuring an installed KDE Kontact for a Kolab server is rather trivial as you can see in the next section. The only thing that is somewhat complex concerning KDE Kontact is selecting the version you will use. There is a special section below explaining the different KDE Kontact Versions available. And finally there are some instructions on how to install these different versions.



  • On an otherwise unconfigured account: Start kolabwizard
  • Enter your account details. Make sure that there are no extra resources after this operation.

For details see the Setup document ("doc2") from the official Kolab Documentation. There is an OpenOffice.org document available in the Kolab CVS system that describes the Kontact setup in more detail.


Most pieces of software have a long successive row of increasing version numbers. Usually there is a specific version number that is currently considered the most stable and well tested. This will be the version you download, install, and use. Sometimes you consider using a newer version that the developers still consider unstable and sometimes you might even consider installing an old version that is considered deprecated.

With KDE Kontact and Kolab the situation is somewhat more complex: There are currently two different branches available. A branch means that there are actually two streams of development, both we different type of focus. In case of Kontact there is the main KDE branch that is available on most Linux platforms. And then there is the Kolab branch. The KDE branch development is concerned with having a reliable, stable mail client in the KDE environment while the Kolab branch is focused on a stable Kolab client that is supported over long time periods. For both branches there exist stable and development versions which makes four different versions in total.

These are the four available versions:

  • KDE branch
    • KDE Kontact-3.5.10 (stable)
    • KDE Master (development)
  • Kolab branch
    • enterprise35 (stable)
    • enterprise5 (development)

There are also old Versions still available, which are no longer actively developed

  • proko2 (old stable)
  • enterprise4 (old development)

The decision which version you should use is actually not too difficult. Both branches are not too far away from each other so that the differences between the different versions are not too great. Several KDE developers are active on both branches and ensure that the features are being kept synchronized between the different versions. So it will usually take only a few minor version increments until you find a feature from one branch appearing in the other branch too.

This will give you an overview of the advantages/disadvantages of each version:

KDE Kontact-3.5.10 (stable)

This is the main, stable version provided with KDE. It is available for most systems as a binary, installable package. If you can accept a few bugs and missing features when connecting to your Kolab Server you can also install this version. This is often the easiest version to install.

enterprise35 (stable)

This is the default version recommended by the Kolab developer team. It is well tested and provide the best compatibility with the Kolab Groupware Server. This is the current stable branch of the Kolab branch that matches the 3.5.10 version of the KDE branch but adds some Kolab specific improvements.

KDE Master (development)

This is the newest version of KDE that is still completely unstable and also lacks some features available in the enterprise version of the Kolab branch.

enterprise5 (development)

This is the development branch of the Kolab developer team. It has some problems and bugs and is still under some development. Note that it is aimed to provide Windows packages for this branch, too. At the moment these packages are still in a development phase, for more information see:

proko2 (old)

This is the stable, well tested version that has been developed alongside with the Kolab Server and should provide the good compatibility with the Kolab Groupware Server. The drawback of this version: It is not the main branch of KDE Kontact so it will usually not be available as a binary, installable package for your distribution. People using something other than Debian will have to compile this version for themself. In addition this version is based on an older Kontact version so it might lack some features of the newer 3.5.*-series.

enterprise4 (old development)

Enterprise4 produced the first public beta 4 versions of

Development on enterprise4 has stopped in favor of the new enterprise5 version that uses state of the art KMail2 and Akonadi.

There is currently no detailed list available that list the feature differences between all versions. So you have to partially rely on your gut feeling for this decision unless you want to actually read the code.

For more information about the KDE development version of Kontact on which the Kolab development version is based see: http://pim.kde.org/


Kontact enterprise35 (Debian packages)

squeeze experimental packages

There is a debian repository: put this in your /etc/apt/sources.list:

deb http://files.kolab.org/apt/releases/   squeeze  experimental
deb-src http://files.kolab.org/apt/releases/   squeeze  experimental

And then run:

apt-get update
apt-get install kdepim

lenny stable packages

There is a debian repository: put this in your /etc/apt/sources.list:

deb http://files.kolab.org/apt/releases/  lenny  stable
deb-src http://files.kolab.org/apt/releases/  lenny  stable

And then run:

apt-get update
apt-get install kdepim

If you need to build from debian source packages, eg for amd64, run:

apt-get update
apt-get source --build kontact

This will probably throw some dependency errors, use apt-get install whatever to fix them and then run again:

apt-get source --build kontact 

This will build your debian amd64 packages.

To install the kde-pim debug support packages :

apt-get install gdb kde-libs-dbg libc6-dbg and qt-x11-free-dbg

Now we install the newly created package. You will need to run this several times to resolve the package dependencies - 3 times worked for me!

dpkg -i *.deb

Snapshot Builds

The development versions are also available as SVN Snaphots Debian packages

Kontact enterprise35 (Ubuntu / Kubuntu packages)

The Ubuntu-related information has moved here: KDE_Kolab_Client/Ubuntu

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