Install XFCE 4.10 (A Lightweight Desktop) in Ubuntu and Linux Mint

Xfce is a free lightweight, fast and easy to use software desktop environment for Unix/Linux like operating systems. It is designed for productivity and aims to be fast and low on system resources. Unlike GNOME and KDE desktops which are heavier, but Xfce uses fewer system resources. Furthermore, it offers better modularity and less dependencies to install and takes less time and low disk space on your hard drive.

Recently, the Xfce development team announced the release of Xfce 4.10 desktop environment and made available for download.

Xfce 4.10 Desktop Screenshots

Xfce 4.10 Desktop

Xfce Desktop

Xfce File Manager

Xfce File Manager

Xfce Application Finder

Xfce Application Finder

This guide show you how to install latest stable Xfce 4.10 desktop environment version in Ubuntu 13.04/12.10/12.04 and Linux Mint 15/14/13.

Xfce 4.10 Features

Window Manager: Controls the arrangement of windows on the screen, provides window decorations and controls workspaces.

Xfce Window Manager

Xfce Window Manager

Desktop Manager: Provides root window menu, desktop icons, adds background image and a window list.

Xfce Desktop Manager

Xfce Desktop Manager

Panel: Options to switch between opened windows and workspaces, launch applications and menu plugins to explore applications and files.

Xfce Panel


Session Manager: Allows you to control logins and store multiple logins sessions of the desktop.

Xfce Session Manager

Session Manager

Application Finder: Give you a list of installed applications for better finding and launching them.

Xfce Application Finder

Application Finder

File Manager: Support for better file management and unique tools like bulk renamer.

Xfce File Manager

File Manager

Setting Manager: Enables you to manage and control various desktop settings such as appearance, keyboard shortcuts, display settings, etc.

Xfce Settings Manager

Settings Manager

To know more details about xfce 4.10, visit at the official Xfce 4.10 tour, and the detailed changelog page.

Installing Xfce 4.10 Desktop

To install XFCE desktop environment, open terminal by pressing “Ctrl+Alt+T” from the desktop and run the following commands in a Terminal.

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:xubuntu-dev/xfce-4.10
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install xfce4

If you want to install complete Xfce desktop, then use the following command

$ sudo apt-get install xubuntu-desktop

If you already running, want to upgrade it to latest version, issue following commands.

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:xubuntu-dev/xfce-4.10
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

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6 Responses

  1. Jon doe says:

    I followed the instructions and restarted and my desktop looks exactly the same. If for some reason it won’t work on my system, how do you get this off? For that matter, with Linux how do you know what is even on your system from following guides like this off the internet? Linux is so user unfriendly

  2. Pedro says:

    Hello. I am using Ubuntu 12.04 and I cannot upgrade to 14.04 since the software that I am working with is only supported with 12.04. I would like to install Xfce for 12.04 but I can’t seem to have any success on this matter. I tried running

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:xubuntu-dev/xfce-4.10

    But it gives me this error:

    Cannot access PPA ( to get PPA information, please check your internet connection.

    When I try sudo add-apt-repository ppa:xubuntu-dev/xfce-4.11 , it follows with a confirmation to the installation, but I am afraid that it will ruin my OS since it is not suited for 12.04. Is there any way that someone sends me the old package xfce 4.10?
    Or is the 4.11 or 4.12 fine to install on Ubuntu 12.04?

  3. Lay Namikaze says:

    thank you so much
    this article help me installing xfce on my low memory laptop
    Greet from Indonesian Linuxer (I’m still a noob, though :D)

  4. Hi,

    You have a typo in this section:

    udo apt-get install xfce4

    should be

    sudo apt-get install xfce4

  5. curt says:

    Looks Good! I Like the Autostart GUI

    I noticed the little internet connection on the tool bar. Is that a wifi connection or mobile broadband? I am using Ubuntu 11.04 – unsupported now, i know but i use it cus it hooks up to usb 3G modem really easy. I tried Slax and got it working but connecting to broadband is a major problem still. Ubuntu is able to run the Blender download package without any problems or complication. (the one from – not the crappy software center version) (Slax7 can’t do that – Blender needs to be converted into a Slax7 package first)

    I would like a simple window manager to boost performance for playing mp4s and flash videos. I tried Fluxbox but its really awkward and some applications are not visible on the app drop down box.(?) It would be more work to set up. That being said it was able to boost the performance of Blender 2.66 about 25 %. Playing mpegs in the video editor was faster and also renderings in Cycles.

    Will Xfce work better then my Mettacities/Xorg combo?

    Thinkpad T42 1.7 Jizzz
    ATi chip (the smallest crappy one with no cooling tube)
    1 Gig Ram
    Ubuntu 11.04 (Updated)
    All font and window settings set to full retard


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