Is Unity really your thing? Here’s how to replace it with a different desktop.

Is Unity really your thing Here's how to replace it with a different desktop.

Ubuntu’s Unity desktop has come under a lot of fire in recent years, but Canonical seems pretty intent on keeping it around, especially since they’re moving to the Snappy Ubuntu Core platform. If you just can’t stand Unity anymore, though, there are some good ways to replace it with something else entirely. Here’s how to replace Unity with KDE, Xfce, and GNOME on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS or newer.

 Open Dash

Log out, and type Software & Updates in the Dash Search Bar to open the software manager. In the Ubuntu Software tab on the left-hand side of the screen, you’ll see an option for Other Software. This is where you can find other desktops like Lubuntu, Xubuntu and more. To install one of these desktops instead of Unity, select an option from this list and follow the prompts from there.

Install GNOME

You should install GNOME in Ubuntu if you want something more minimal, intuitive, and easier on the eyes than Unity. The installation process is as easy as installing any other application and takes only two clicks of the mouse – but don’t worry, we’ll show you everything you need to know before you get started!


  • Create an account in GNOME Online Accounts
  • Creating an account in GNOME Online Accounts will allow you to log into the machine using either your fingerprint or face recognition and access the following settings:
  • Privacy settings for what others can see about you, apps and files;
  • Online data storage for personal files;
  • Synchronization of settings across devices; *Connecting networks from home or work as trusted Wi-Fi networks when outside those locations.

Install Cinnamon

If you’re looking for a less-experimental and more traditional experience, this is the route for you! Cinnamon is arguably the best combination of stability and cutting-edge features that Linux has to offer. Just make sure that your distro comes with Cinnamon preinstalled (it usually does) or download it from its website then follow these instructions:

Open the terminal and enter sudo apt-get install cinnamon Once completed, log out of Ubuntu, then back in and select Cinnamon from the login screen


Switching back and forth between the desktops

If you want to install a new desktop, first find out what it is (and where to download it). Then follow the instructions on the website of that flavor of Linux. The installation process varies by OS, but if you ever get stuck, forums are usually plentiful and helpful. Check out the sidebar for more links to help.

Adding more apps to make your desktop work for you

Once you’ve installed a new environment, such as Cinnamon or KDE, you will want to install any apps that make the most sense for you and your workflow. There are plenty of great options available so take some time to find the best ones for you! For example, if one likes playing music or has music-related tasks on their desktop, they might want media players like Amarok, Clementine, Rhythmbox, or VLC media player.

If one likes listening to podcasts or audiobooks while they work then they might want audiobook applications like Audacity and Podge. Another way is by adding productivity tools like LibreOffice and GIMP so people can edit images and other documents with ease.


1) What is the Ubuntu Unity interface and why do I want to use it?

Unity is the default interface for Ubuntu, which is an operating system for computers.

2) Why would I want to change my operating system’s interface? You might feel like you’re out of touch if everyone you know uses the new Ubuntu interface but you don’t. You may not be able to find a program that works properly or believe that you’re missing some functionality or features on this new OS.

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