I’m looking to work with a KDE distro on my RP4. I’m most familiar with the Ubuntu family but it doesn’t seem Kubuntu has an ARM image.

Fedora has a KDE spin but not sure I want to go that route just yet. Any suggestions?

3 Answers 3


Any suggestions?

Yes, start with the lite version of RpiOS and install KDE on it. You could actually do the same with the full version (which might make it easier in some ways).

On normative linux installs (such as RpiOS or Ubuntu), you do not need to switch distros to switch DE's. The reason for the various "spins" is to make it easier1 and provide some customizations by the distro (so you don't just get KDE decor, you get eg. Fedora decor too).

In fact, DE's are really specific to the user, not to the distro or the individual system, meaning it is easily possible (given enough RAM) to run multiple DE's simultaneously -- although if you only have one screen/keyboard interface you obviously have to switch back and forth, this is easy enough as well. In other words, you could start with the full version of RpiOS and be able to run either KDE or the default LXDE derivitive.

There are two basic steps to this:

  • Install the software; you may want to dig around and see if Debian (RpiOS is really a modded Debian armhf) has a metapackage, otherwise I would just start with apt install kde-full.
  • Configure the user you want to use KDE by configuring either their xinit or DM files; "DM" refers to "display manager" which provides the graphical login screen; the default one on the full version of RpiOS is lightdm.

  1. On a Pi this "easiness" should be weighed against the potential difficulties of running something that isn't RpiOS, such as the fact that most of the tutorials, etc. you will find online are Raspbian/RpiOS specific, and that just because an image has "raspberrypi" in its name and is distributed from a web page that says it is for the Pi does not mean that every effort has been made to include the Pi specific functionality from RPiOS.

If you have Raspberry Pi OS (previously called Raspbian) installed you can use the following command:

sudo apt install kde-plasma-desktop

There is a distro Manjaro with KDE Plasma on "Raspberry Pi Imager". It could be a good choice, I love the KDE Plasma. enter image description here

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.