How to Install Xfce Desktop Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

Xfce is a lightweight free, open-source desktop environment for UNIX-like operating systems. It is designed to be fast and light on system resources while more visually appealing than the default desktop environments that ship with most operating systems. Xfce is very popular with older systems, with hardware as a key feature in its design to conserve memory and CPU cycles.

In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install Xfce on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS Jammy Jellyfish using the command line terminal for users that seek an alternative desktop environment to run that is lightweight, clean, and simple.

Update System

Before proceeding, run an update to ensure your system is up-to-date to avoid conflicts.

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y

Install Xfce

Begin the installation of Xfce by using the following in your terminal.

sudo apt install task-xfce-desktop -y

The desktop environment installation will not take long, given it is relatively lightweight compared to available alternatives. During the installation, you will see the “Configuring lightdm.”


How to Install Xfce Desktop Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

Xfce is recommended to run using lightdm. If this will be your default desktop, select it, press the TAB KEY to select <Ok>, and hit the ENTER KEY.


How to Install Xfce Desktop Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

Once complete, reboot your system, which can be done by typing the following directly into your terminal.


Switching Default Display Managers

Alternatively, in the future, if you want to change the default display manager back to GDM3 to use GNOME, you can re-run this pop-up using the following command.

sudo dpkg-reconfigure lightdm

Make sure to reboot if you are going from Xfce back to GNOME and vice versa in the future.

First Xfce Desktop

Once you have restarted your desktop, you will arrive at your login screen.


First, you need to verify the desktop environment. This is done by clicking the configuration in the top right-hand corner.

Next, select “Xfce Session” instead of the default “Ubuntu (Default)”

Example (Click Image Expand):

How to Install Xfce Desktop Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

Once logged in, you will notice quite a few UI changes besides the apparent color and background change with the famous mouse. Like other light-weight desktops, Xfce is designed to be lightweight, so the eye candy is kept to a minimum.

From here, visiting the settings and configuring the taskbar and theme colors would be the first option I would look at.

Example (Desktop View):

How to Install Xfce Desktop Ubuntu 22.04 LTS

And that is it, and you have successfully installed the Xfce desktop environment.

How to Update Xfce Desktop

Updates are handled by the standard update and upgrade commands as follows.

sudo apt update

When updates are available, run the standard upgrade command as you would with any other apt package.

sudo apt upgrade

Comments and Conclusion

In the tutorial, you have learned how to install the Xfce desktop environment on your Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. Overall, it’s a solid option and is generally up to date with the latest releases from Xfce.

Ideally, you can install this package and switch depending on your mood if you have a decent system. If you prefer desktop jumping, it’s worth checking out if the looks appeal to you. If unsure, I suggest installing a VM first, then on your main machine.

For further information on using the Xfce desktop environment, visit the official documentation.


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