How to Install Latest KDE Plasma on Ubuntu 18.04

Written by Martins D. Okoi

KDE’s Plasma Desktop Environment is a beautiful Desktop Environment that focuses on speed, simplicity, security, and customization. If you are reading this post then Plasma needs no introduction to you.

The main issue with installing KDE Plasma on Ubuntu is that it requires a lot of packages and some users eventually get stuck midway and confused when they try downloading all the packages manually.

Today, I’m going to direct you on how to install the latest KDE Plasma (version 5.12.5) on your Ubuntu 18.04 workstation using either of 2 methods.

Installing the Full Kubuntu Desktop in Ubuntu

The first command installs Tasksel – a tool that enables the download of several related packages at once. The second command uses Tasksel to install all of KDE Plasma’s dependencies on Ubuntu.

$ sudo apt install tasksel
$ sudo tasksel install kubuntu-desktop

During installation, it will ask you to select your default display manager to sddm.

Select Ubuntu Display Manager

Select Ubuntu Display Manager

Once installation completes, restart your Ubuntu machine and from the Login screen, select Desktop Sessions as Plasma as shown in the screenshoot.

KDE Plasma Login

KDE Plasma Login

KDE Plasma Desktop

KDE Plasma Desktop

Check KDE Plasma Version

Check KDE Plasma Version

Viola! You should be running KDE Plasma on your Ubuntu machine by default and you can go ahead to customize it as you like.

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This is cool for those who want a somewhat Kubuntu experience without installing the whole OS.

Installing KDE Plasma in Ubuntu

This might be the method that you’re looking for. All you need is to run this single command:

$ sudo apt-get install plasma-desktop

This method neither edits your bootup configuration nor does it install any unnecessary dependencies.

Both methods get KDE Plasma on your Ubuntu machine so the choice you make depends on your purpose for wanting a DE change. Remember to set up a recovery point that you can revert to just in case you hit some bumps in the road.

Let us know which method worked better for you in the comments section below and subscribe to FossMint for more How-Tos other publications.


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About the author

Martins D. Okoi

Martins Divine Okoi is a graduate of Computer Science with a passion for Linux and the Open Source community. He works as a Graphic Designer, Web Developer, and programmer.