Kinoite Plasma 6 Beta 2 - Does KDE Plasma use 1024 bytes or 1000 bytes to measure file size?

Does KDE Plasma use 1024 bytes or 1000 bytes to measure file size?
And is there a way of changing between the two? I prefer round numbers.

I’m not very experienced on this topic because all sizes have bit vs byte names.

Most linux tools use bytes in the power of 2 sense and not in the power of 10 as it used for marketing purposes.

1 kilobyte is 1000 bytes (power of 10)
1 kibibyte is 1024 bytes. (power of 2)

This can be very confusing since 3 Terrabyte (TB) is actually ~2.73 Tibbibyte (TiB) and so people see an apparent loss of space on their drive.
The difference is only in the units used to report the value.

This is seen in various ways throughout the computer industry so users may get confused until they are able to understand that the difference is only the units used. Just like 1 inch is ~2.54 centimeters. The length is the same, the units are different.

As far as bit vs byte it is really very simple. 1 KB == 8 Kb since 1 byte == 8 bits. That relation will never change. After all computers work with bits which have 2 states and thus work with things in the powers of 2. and was first coined in the age of 8 bit processors and is related to why we have had 8 bit, 16 bit, 32 bit, and 64 bit processors since each steps one power of 2 larger in the data processed size.

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The term BYTE was in use on DEC PDP 10 computers before the age of 8 bit things.

The PDP 10 had byte load and store instructions that allows the byte size to be anything from 1 to 36 bits wide. It was common to use 7 bit bytes to extract 5 ASCII chars from a 36bit word.

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Is it possible to make Dolphin display sizes in 1000 (or 1024 bytes) just for the user, while continuing giving the programs the sizes they require?


There was an existing setting, but it wasn’t respected in some cases. It appears that there’s been a fix for KDE 6, but I don’t see a backport for KDE 5.

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This is likely to be the solution, but is there a way to do this from the System Settings?

I have no clue about the ease of doing so with dolphin.

Most if not all tools are hard coded with units to display their output and most of them also use the binary units since that is commonly used in the computer world.

Anything in the FOSS software world can be changed for your own use.

All you would need is to modify the code to display the values in the preferred units then recompile the app so it gives you the desired output.

You would need to be able to program the changes and it would be much easier to learn to adjust your thinking to the fact that the displayed number is a binary value and move on. After all, it is only a relatively small discrepancy and only applies to the units used.
2^10 == 1024, 10^3 == 1000 ~= 2^9.966
You could even write a wrapper for each app to convert the displayed value from binary to powers of 10 – but it would likely need customized for each app.

The great majority of us are used to thinking in values as binary and not as powers of 10 when related to computers. It only really matters when making a direct comparison of the same or similar values if displayed twice, once in each type of unit, then it seems odd at the least.

There’s an MR for that targeting KDE 6.1:

You can configure it manually, but it won’t work properly without this change, which so far seems to only be in KDE 6.

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