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Kate - Telemetry / User Feedback

Sunday, 9 February 2020 | Christoph Cullmann

Starting with the upcoming 20.04 release (or current master branch builds), Kate allows the user to turn on some telemetry submission. This is a purely opt-in approach. We will not submit any data if you not actively enable this feature!

Like Plasma we use the KUserFeedback framework for this task.

For details about how we handle the data, refer to KDE’s Applications Privacy Policy and specifically the Telemetry Policy.

We documented what kind of info we submit on the Telemetry Use page.

At the moment we collect maximal this information:

  • Application version: to know which application versions are still in use
  • Qt version: to know the underlying Qt version (e.g. to see how important workarounds for old issues are)
  • Platform information: to know the operating system we are running on
  • Screen parameters: to find out how common multi-screen usage is
  • Start count: to find out how frequent users use our editor
  • Usage time: to find out how many users are using the software heavily vs in passing

If you want to review the code that was used to add this, take a look at our merge request for the initial addition of this feature.

If you spot errors in the code, please inform us, either via mail to or via a bug report at

I myself activated now the telemetry submission for my installations of the master branch version, this is possible via the Settings -> Configure Kate… -> User Feedback dialog page.

I encourage you to do the same, if you want to provide us feedback which Kate versions are out in the wild and a bit about how often and long they are used.

In the future we might add some hint somewhere in the UI to ask once to take a look at the telemetry config page in a non-intrusive way. As we still need to think about how to do this in the least annoying way, at the moment no such hint is given at all.

I hope our very conservative approach to this shows that we value the privacy of our users and are not branded as “yet another spyware application” or get plenty of “Kate editor spies on users” stories.