Try alternative desktops on Ubuntu

If you are looking for a super-lightweight desktop environment on Ubuntu or just something different to Unity, you’re in luck. Almost any desktop environment available for Linux can sit on top of Ubuntu. For example, Razor-qt is a modern and clean alternative DE. It requires lesser processing power than Unity (razor-qt with openbox shows at least 5°C less [and < 50°C] on my laptop running an Ivy Bridge i5 processor). LXDE seemed to be the fastest (yet cute) to me. Some articles on how to install or configure some of the desktop environments on Ubuntu (tested on Trusty 14.04):

  • Budgie from Solus OS
  • Cinnamon
    $ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gwendal-lebihan-dev/cinnamon-nightly
    $ sudo apt-get update
    $ sudo apt-get install cinnamon

    The second option is to add the sources for Mint 17 Qiana. Run the following commands:

    $ echo "deb http://packages.linuxmint.com/ qiana main upstream import" | sudo tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list.d/cinnamon_qiana.list > /dev/null
    $ sudo apt-get update
    $ sudo apt-get install linuxmint-keyring
    $ sudo apt-get update
    $ sudo apt-get install cinnamon
  • Enlightenment
    $ sudo apt-get install e17

    Enlightenment 19

  • LXDE
    $ sudo apt-get install lxde

    LXDE is my personal favourite and here’s an article on how you can customize it to your heart’s content.

  • LXQt
  • MATE
  • Openbox
    $ sudo apt-get install openbox
  • Pantheon
  • Razor-qt
    $ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:razor-qt
    $ sudo apt-get update
    $ sudo apt-get install razorqt
  • Trinity
  • XFCE
    $ sudo apt-get install xfce4

Take your pick!

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