1) Office desktop.
This one's usually running the latest and greatest KDE RC or beta, with a static IP and something like a 100MBps-FD link to the mail server. No local folders, so this was the natural candidate to test first. I did not even try the data migration, but wiped my entire local configuration of the KDEPIM programs as thoroughly as possible before updating. On the whole this went rather well. From 4.7.3 to 4.7.95 I've seen my share of kmail2 / kontact / akonadi crashes, but none of them really led to bigger problems. Impressively, I could also see each of these crash bugs I hit get fixed on KDE bugzilla in the meantime! Since upgrading to 4.7.97 I haven't had a crash anymore.
The only thing that is really bugging me a the moment is that I absolutely can't drag an e-mail message into another folder (I always have to right-click on the entry in the message list, select "Move to folder", ...). However, that is likely a problem in one of the underlying libraries. :| I would really like to help debugging this problem; if you can give me any clue where to look, please message...
Going home for christmas meant spending some time on a train. The days before I had upgraded this box to QT-4.8.0 and KDE+KDEPIM 4.7.95. Again, clean start with a new configuration. On the train I spent some time ironing out bugs there. The GPRS connection was happily going down and up again with every tunnel or less-populated countryside. That's when the akonadi backend started really acting up. When I arrived at my family's place, my e-mail had become fully non-functional (no fetching e-mails, no sending e-mails, the backend making kmail hang, regular crashes, and all fumbling with akonadiconsole did not help). After a while of trying, I gave up, wiped my entire KDEPIM configuration and data and downgraded to 4.4 again. I was impressed how responsive my e-mail program suddenly became.
Talking to other people, it seems that some have problems with bad internet connections, some don't. Maybe I should have used networkmanager, at least Alexxy reports that it's working fine with it.
3) Home desktop.
Well... Here I store my e-mail archive since 1996- that's maildir folders with roughly 50000 messages. Maybe I'll consider upgrading KDEPIM sometime around KDE 4.9.
I'm sorry if this blog entry is demotivating for the program developers. Some time ago I followed part of an animated discussion on irc between a kdepim user and a kdepim developer. Quoting a small part,
<user> first: fix bugs. second:dont change data formats. third: change gui only if absolutly nessary.While this is of course oversimplifying, both points have clear validity, the first because people have come to rely on the software, the second because it's volunteer work by people enthusiastic about their creation. In the end we'll have to find a good compromise.
<developer> first: have fun; second: make it work for others