This page uses information from the KDE Website. Please read the information there too. kde.org
Installation the Easy Way
KDE comes in almost every version of Linux - the easiest way to install it is to select it as your desktop when you install Linux on your computer - you will normally be presented with a menu during installation where you can pick your desktop. Just pick KDE: easy! Some distros such as Kubuntu ship with KDE out of the box.
How to install KDE after that will depend on which Linux distribution you are using.
KDE is big, so it is split into several packages, which are listed below. KDE requires the three packages kdelibs, kdebase and aRts; and the rest are optional. However, you'll probably want most or all of these other packages because they contain useful applications. In fact, I recommend you install all of them.
|kdeplasma-addons||Additional widgets for plasma|
|kdeutils||strongly recommended||calculator, editors, ark (for zip, tar.gz etc)|
|kdeartwork||recommended||extra wallpaper, icons, sounds|
|kdegames||required ;-)||games - snake, tron, mini-golf and many more|
|kdegraphics||previewer for .ps and .dvi files; extra drawing programs|
|kdemultimedia||CD player, mixer, MIDI player|
|kdenetwork||Instant messenger, KGet downloader, Samba configuration tools|
|kdepim||Email program (KMail), Mail Reader, Personal Information Tools|
|kdepimlibs||libraries for kdepim|
|kdeedu||optional||Educational and entertaining for younger users|
|kdeaccessibility||optional||magnifier, mouse tool, speech synthesiser|
|kdetoys||optional||Toys: eyes, egg timer|
|kdebindings||programming||additional bindings for java, perl, etc|
|kdewebdev||programming||Web development tools|
|kdesdk||programming, recommended||Software development kit|
If it is not included by default with your distro, your distro's package system may have KDE available in their repository. Check your distribution's documentation if in doubt.
Installing KDE on Debian and Ubuntu
KDE can be installed in Debian and Ubuntu using apt-get. For Ubuntu, this will change Ubuntu into Kubuntu. Apt-get installs all the correct packages from the Internet or from your Debian CD - see the apt-get manual pages for details.
- Back up your data (not required, but suggested).
- Log in as root (super-user), or use sudo if you are in the sudoers list.
- Update your package information to the latest versions:
- Debian users should install the kde metapackage as well as the K Display Manager:
apt-get install kde kdm
- Ubuntu users should install the kubuntu-desktop metapackage which includes KDE and the K Display Manager:
apt-get install kubuntu-desktop
- Note: pay attention to any packages that are marked for removal before you continue. If you want to check, use the --dry-run option with this command.
- Now go to Starting KDE
- Synaptic can be used to control apt-get through a gui. This can be easier if you plan to install more than KDE or prefer not to work with a terminal.
- It is also possible to download the .deb packages from the Debian website and install them using dpkg, in a method similar to the .rpm installation below. If you do this, you should make sure you have all the packages you need - including any dependencies you don't already have. This method should only be used if you are unable to use apt-get.
Installing KDE Using .RPM Files
If you use a version of Linux which uses .rpm to install programs, you can install KDM using rpm files.
- Download all the .rpm files you want, and save them into a new folder.
- Download and read the INSTALL and README files.
- Back up your data (not required, but suggested)
- Quit your desktop. This is not always required, but this is a good idea. You can normally quit your desktop by changing your runlevel.
- Log in as root (super-user).
cdto enter the directory you saved the .rpm files to
- To install, use the command
rpm -ivh *.rpm
- Now go to Starting KDE
Installation from the Source Code
This type of installation is fairly tricky. You will need the correct version of Qt and some other libraries installed before you start. See the KDE website for details.
The Konstruct tool simplifies this by doing many of the tasks, such as downloading and properly extracting packages, configuring and building them.
If you are on a desktop or have xserver running already, quit it. To start KDE, type
which will start kde on a new xserver. If this doesn't work, try
To start KDE each time (you probably want this) you'll need to edit your startup files. If you use KDM or XDM to log in, edit .xsession, otherwise edit .xinitrc or .Xclients.
- Backup your current startup file.
- Remove the lines in the startup file which start up your previous desktop program
- Replace these with
startkde(if it can't find the X-Server, add
- Restart your computer.
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