How to install KDE 4.1 on Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex)

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KDE has reached version 4.1.2. The new series includes updates to several of KDE’s core components, notably a port to Qt 4. It contains a new multimedia API, called Phonon, a device integration framework called Solid and a new style guide and default icon set called Oxygen. It also includes the new desktop and panel user interface tool, called Plasma, which supports desktop widgets, replacing SuperKaramba and similar to Apple’s Dashboard widgets. The port to Qt 4 will facilitate support for non-X11-based platforms, including Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X. One of the overall goals of KDE 4 is to be more easily portable to different operating systems.

Install KDE 4.1 on Ubuntu 8.10

First you need to edit the /etc/apt/sources.list file

sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

add the following line

deb intrepid main

save and exit the file

Update the source list using the following command

sudo aptitude update

Install KDE4 desktop Environment using the following command

sudo aptitude install kubuntu-kde4-desktop

Enter your password and press Y when asked if you want to continue.

Configure kdm, KDE's graphical login manager screen. Press Enter.

Here you need to select which desktop enviroment you want to use as default on for Gnome select gdm and for KDE select kdm select ok and press enter

This will install all the required packages for KDE4

Running KDE Session

After finishing installation you need to logout from your current session.In login window click on Options---> Select Session...

Select KDE click on Change Session

Select your option here you want to run just for this session or default Desktop Environment

KDE 4.1 is loading

KDE 4.1 Desktop

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24 Responses

  1. Gon says:

    Why you add additional repository?
    KDE 4.1 is in default Ubuntu Intrepid repository.

    it is as simple as to only do:
    sudo apt-get install kubuntu-kde4-desktop

    Or installing Kubuntu from the beginning.

  2. Corey says:

    This method does not allow for an easy uninstall as well when switching back to gnome it completely broke it, the end result for me was backing up and formatting and reinstall.

  3. Simon says:

    So, please could we have an idiots’ guide to uninstalling KDE, after we’ve tried it and preferred Gnome?

  4. alko says:

    I thought ubuntu is easy, so I gave it a try yesterday. After trying to install kde4 via graphical installers ‘add/remove programs’ or synaptic, it presented me with this funny message about my platform not being supported – i386 – I have a core 2 Duo, so WTF? Then I followed this tutorial and a few minutes later I had KDE4 installed – great. I’m not sure if kubuntu (when installed from scratch) looks any different comapred to what I achieved, but I certainly didn’t like it. It was far from smooth (nvidia drivers enabled), some problems with redrawing icons in ‘systray’ (just like in the screenshot above)… overall feeling of immaturity 🙁
    So I switched back to Gnome and .. surprise, surprise.. some KDE applets started to appear after logon in Gnome as well. I’m sure having KDE’s KnetworkManager next to it’s Gnome’s siblign may seem cool to some, but definitely not to me!
    I would have imagined the two desktop environments better isolated from each other…

  5. jimbo says:

    sudo apt-get remove kde*

    thats all you need to do to get rid of kde and all its packages.

  6. aburafiq says:

    since the above guide was using aptitude

    then simply “sudo aptitude purge kubuntu-kde4-desktop” will remove altogether the packages installed during the above session.

  7. Greg says:

    I really like the look and feel of KDE better. When I followed the directions above I successfully installed KDE and was able to log into it. However, when I did the screen kept doing a slow blinking. It wasn’t affecting any of the applications but it was not usable because of it. I guess I’ll have to try the uninstall instructions now…

  8. moto says:

    nice guide tnx 🙂

  9. Tadas says:

    wery goog guide thanks (: 😀

  10. ovi says:

    I have got some toubleshoot with uninstall this KDE… I wrote “sudo apt-get remove kde” in my terminal, but it wrote this:

    dpkg was interrupted, you must manually run ‘dpkg –configure -a’ to correct the problem.

    I am new user of Linux Ubuntu 8.10 (and I am Slovak). Can you help me?

  11. admin says:


    try to run the following command from your terminal

    sudo dpkg –configure -a

  12. ovi says:

    Thank you, but I google some information and I find out solution. I uninstall KDE (maybe successfuly), but there was another problem. I think, that I solved it, too. 🙂

  13. ovi says:

    I completelly uninstalled KDE (Kubuntu) from my Ubuntu 8.10 (“sudo apt-get remove kde*”). But when the system is loading, splash look like KUBUNTU ( no UBUNTU ( What may be the problem? How can I edit GRUB? 🙂

  14. joshg says:

    You have to change usplash theme. There’s a guide in ubuntu wiki.

  15. Tanya says:

    Thx for a great step-by-step guide for installing KDE. I’ve only been an Ubuntu-fan for about 2 months now and absolutely love every aspect of it. And now with KDE, I’ve fallen in love all over again (with Ubuntu, naturally).

  16. david says:

    Thanks this worked a treat. Where did you find the nice mountain desktop image???

  17. Cris says:


    I am really new to Linux and I really got intrigued by the new KDE so I want to try it. I am truly grateful for this step by step process and I noticed that loading applications is way faster in KDE than in GNOME. However, I have a problem after installing, the additional widgets included in the original Kubuntu ISO Install is not present such as the notes widget and the folder widget. Is there a way to install them manually in the plasma desktop? (That is obvious based on the final result of this tutorial)

    I wish to have a desktop that looks like this: or this:

    FYI: I have a 500 GB hd filled with 50GB of music and 300Gb of images (photography escapades) therefore formatting for me is not an option for I have no place to have back-up. It is costly for me to buy a new hd as I don’t have the budget.

    Thanks in advance.


  18. fatbloke says:

    the guides looking good, TVM.

    Personally I’m a kde person and am only running this because of problems with the knetwork manager and static IP’s (and a couple of other issues that aren’t relevant).

    I have no idea why I got the “can’t install kde4 on your system” message when trying to use the add/remove facility and as far as I can tell KDE4 doesn’t seem to be in the Ubuntu repository by default, hence having to install it “your way”.

    As long as I can get it installed, I’ll be happy – KDE seems (well used to seem when it was kde 3.5.X) straight forward, more so than gnome IMO – but having to learn the differences between kde 3.x.x and kde 4.x.x isn’t too much of an issue.

    Again, TVM for the guide. Much appreciated.

  19. Basil Fitze says:

    Great to see people still like either, I like choice. I use Ubuntu 8.10 with Ubuntu and virtualize OpenSUSE 11.1 with KDE, I actually can say I prefer Gnome.

  20. Jon Loveless says:

    I want to add KDE to my Intrepid install. I read somewhere that if you add KDE to an Ubuntu installation that you will run into issues when you do your next update, as with 8.10 to 9.04, for example. Is this the case, and how do you do such an upgrade to get both KDE and Gnome updated at the same time.

    Many thanks.

  21. filip says:

    For those new to Linux (like myself) reading this article: do not be discouraged by troubles some people here had. Go ahead and try it on yourself!

    Here is what you can do if you are affraid of playing with your Linux dedicated box: get a free VMware player (or other virtual machine of your choice) and a linux image for VMware (look for one at or or somewhere else) and follow the steps described here. It worked for me without any glitches (on my laptop with 64-bit Vista), but if it did not, you can always start afresh with your saved image.

  22. Mik Scheper says:

    I’ve tried this and I’m getting dependency problems; endless ‘No solution found within the allotted time. Try harder?’ messages. I also tried using apt-get, with more straightforward results: ‘Broken packages’. I’ve used *nix via shell prompts for decades but I’m still fairly new to Ubuntu, so please forgive me if this is a newb question.

  23. Mik Scheper says:

    I happened to run into somebody from KDE QA last night, and she told me that just ‘sudo apt-get install kubuntu-desktop’ would do the trick.

    Once I took ‘deb intrepid main’ back out of /etc/apt/sources.list, it worked: I’m running KDE 4.1 right now.

    I’m not sure if the info in this article is out of date or if it’s trying to achieve something more than just installing KDE 4.1 on Intrepid, but to me it doesn’t look like messing with the sources list is necessary. I hope this helps somebody.

  24. saurabh says:

    i tried installing but it shows certain conflicts when i enter this oon the terminal

    sudo aptitude install kubuntu-kde4-desktop

    please help me out. 🙁

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