Widget size and position different between X11 and Wayland

I switched from Wayland to X11 on a 4K laptop screen. On Wayland the display was globally scaled to 200%. I had to do the same for X11. Per previous post, the Plasma panel and the cursor/icons were not scaled and had to be separately doubled in size.

But also I notice that the desktop layout not only wasn’t changed when I switched from Wayland to X11 but the widgets that I had on the desktop are now different sizes and their locations have been moved somewhat, in a seemingly illogical manner. These used to be in a column on the right side of the screen, and were approximately the same size (as far as I could manually lay them out. I feel that widget sizing and positioning is also a problem that needs fixing on KDE).

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I’m seeing some very unexpected behavior here. I have been having problems with logging out users on the latest Fedora bits. I just created a new user and have been bouncing between the two trying to reproduce behavior.

When I logged back into my main user account after setting up the other one, I found that I had the un-scaled 4K display again, not the 200% scaled display I’d set previously. The new user account I just created has an un-scaled display so it seems that somehow the scaling was dropped in the main account after using the un-scaled second account. I was changing between X11 and Wayland on the second account while trying to reproduce the logout issue. The main account is still set to X11.

I set the scaling for the main account back to 200%. This time the changes were reflected immediately (didn’t have to restart) but then my mouse pointer and panel were twice the size that they should be. I’d manually adjusted their sizes previously to get them to display properly after I initially set global scaling to 200%. I reduced the panel height and pointer size back down to half the current size again (48 to 24 in the case of pointers, 64 to 32 in the case of the panel height). However, now when I move the mouse pointer over the desktop it doubles in size again!

The application launcher is now showing as the full width (now it’s wider than the panel!) of the panel whereas previously it was showing at about 25% (probably some absolute number of pixels, I don’t know).

Image showing huge application launcher and outsized mouse pointer

However, my widgets are back roughly where I placed them originally, and about the right size; not exactly, but close.

The problem is switching between Wayland and X11: both apparently honor the 200% display global scaling but on X11 I have to commensurately increase the size of the Plasma panel and the cursors. If I then switch to Wayland from X11, the 200% scaling is maintained but now the Plasma panel height and cursor size are twice the size they should be. If I halve them then the mouse pointer is OK until I mouse over a part of the desktop or certain controls, like the System Settings main window and the pointer suddenly doubles in size again.

I just booted into the machine selecting X11 and now my mouse pointer and panel height are half the size they should be; the mouse pointer isn’t changing size depending on what it’s hovering over, however.

The Application Launcher is about 40% the width of the Plasma panel (I’ve reduced the panel’s width by about 10% at either side), i.e. about “normal” size again.

The Widgets on my desktop that I positioned on the right hand side under Wayland are displayed as per the picture above: in the middle of the screen (i.e. half distance), about half the size of the original in the case of the clock, and about the same size in the case of the CPU and memory pie charts. The positioning is a little off too; the clock looks worse because it’s a quarter the size hat I originally set it to be.

On X11 I started System Settings and the mouse cursor is half-size as soon as it’s within the bounding rectangle of the program. Same with Google Chrome, Dolphin. Konsole (when mousing over menus or in the client window area), KCalc, Kate, … Seems like with KDE apps (using Qt?) the mouse cursor loses the global scaling when the pointer is over the application window. It looks like GTK applications maintain the mouse pointer size that I’ve set in System Settings.