KDE/XFCE hybrid - the greatest DE of all time

22nd November 2015

In this article you will learn how to combine KDE and XFCE together to create the greatest DE the world has ever seen.

XFCE + Kwin

  1. Set up XFCE on your favourite operating system.
  2. Install Kwin, the KDE window manager ("kde-window-manager" package in Debian Jessie).
  3. Press Alt+F2 in XFCE to bring up the run dialog and type kwin --replace. Now you are using the KDE window manager and will discover the fancy graphics compositing.
  4. We need to make XFCE remember to use Kwin. Close all windows and go to "Applications Menu" > "Settings" > "Session and Startup" > "Session" > "Save Session". Now reboot or log out and in to test.
  5. Now to customise Kwin install "KDE System Settings". ("systemsettings" package in Debian Jessie). You may need to log out and in before KDE apps show up in the menu. Now you can go to "Applications Menu" > "Settings" > "KDE System Settings". Of interrest are "Desktop Effects", "Window Behaviour", "Virtual Desktops" and "Screen Edges".

XFCE + enormous apps

Now to find enormous apps you can look on the KDE website. Here are some of my favourites, all of which are in the debian repositories:

Note: you may need to log out and in to see this stuff in your XFCE menu.


Do not use the "Notes" XFCE panel app as it will crash the KDE/XFCE hybrid.