KDE (desktop environment)


Prior to R3.2, KDE was the default desktop environment in Qubes. Beginning with R3.2, however, XFCE is the new default desktop environment. Nonetheless, it is still possible to install KDE by issuing this command in dom0:

$ sudo qubes-dom0-update kde-settings-qubes

You can also change your default login manager (lightdm) to the new KDE default: sddm

  • first you need to edit the /etc/sddm.conf to make sure if the custom X parameter is set according to Qubes needs:

     ServerArguments=-nolisten tcp -background none
  • disable the lightdm service:

     $ sudo systemctl disable lightdm
  • enable the sddm service:

      $ sudo systemctl enable sddm
  • reboot

If you encounter performance issues with KDE, try switching back to LightDM.

Window Management

You can set each window’s position and size like this:

Right click title bar --> More actions --> Special window settings...

  Window matching tab
    Window class (application): Exact Match: <vm_name>
    Window title: Substring Match: <partial or full program name>

  Size & Position tab
    [x] Position: Apply Initially: x,y
    [x] Size: Apply Initially: x,y

You can also use kstart to control virtual desktop placement like this:

  kstart --desktop 3 --windowclass <vm_name> -q --tray -a <vm_name> '<run_program_command>'

(Replace “3” with whichever virtual desktop you want the window to be on.)

This can be useful for creating a simple shell script which will set up your workspace the way you like.


If you decide to remove KDE do not use dnf remove @kde-desktop-qubes. You will almost certainly break your system.

The safest way to remove (most of) KDE is:

sudo dnf remove kdelibs plasma-workspace