How to Install Kylin Desktop Environment on Ubuntu 20.04

Ubuntu Kylin is the official Chinese version of Ubuntu however supports English. It has been described as a “loose continuation” to its parent operating system with some differences in appearance and functionality. Still, most importantly, it’s explicitly designed for approval in mainland China, but international users are welcome to use it.

In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install Kylin Desktop Environment on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa.

Note installing Kylin desktop will be hard to remove and restore your original desktop however you can swap back to the default GNOME desktop and keep it installed. The recommendation is to install Kylin or any alternative desktop environment on a Virtual Machine to test before a complete upgrade.

Update Ubuntu System

Update your Ubuntu operating system to make sure all existing packages are up to date:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y

Install Kylin Desktop Environment

sudo apt install ubuntukylin-desktop -y

The installation will take roughly 900MB to download and require over 2GB in additional space.

Next, during the installation, you will see the following prompt window.

Example:

How to Install Kylin Desktop Environment on Ubuntu 20.04

As the above output has stated, this message informs you about which display manager to choose.

For Unity Desktop, this will be “lightdm”.

Press the “TAB” key to select <Ok> and press your “ENTER KEY” to proceed.

Example:

How to Install Kylin Desktop Environment on Ubuntu 20.04

Once installed, reboot your PC.

reboot

First Look Ubuntu Kylin Desktop Environment

Once you have returned to your login screen, you will immediately notice the background has changed.

Login to proceed to your new desktop environment.

Example (Click to Enlarge Image):

How to Install Kylin Desktop Environment on Ubuntu 20.04

Once logged in, you will notice a beautiful desktop, similar to a Windows type of look in some ways as China is trying to phase out its reliance on Microsoft Windows but with the essence of Ubuntu and Linux in mind.

Mostly the English translations have worked well, the only thing you may struggle with is the Kylin App store which focuses solely on Chinese, but you can install software with flatpak, snap, PPA’s so you have alternatives.

Example (Click to Enlarge Image):

How to Install Kylin Desktop Environment on Ubuntu 20.04

Switching Default Display Managers

In the future, if you want to change the default display manager back to GDM to use GNOME and so on from the Unity and LightDM display manager.

Open your terminal, then re-run the pop-up to configure the default display manager using the following command.

sudo dpkg-reconfigure sddm

Comments and Conclusion

In the tutorial, you have learned how to import the required repository and install the Kylin Desktop Environment on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

If you are looking for an alternative to the traditional desktop environment, Kylin is an excellent option. It has all of the features you need, and it is designed specifically for users in mainland China. Have you tried using Kylin? Let us know what you think in the comments!



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