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How To Install GNOME Desktop Environment In Arch Linux

By sk
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It's been a long time since we posted guides about installing Desktop environment in Arch Linux. Now is the time to see another DE installation. This brief tutorial describes how to install GNOME desktop environment in Arch Linux. I tested this guide in latest Arch Linux version, and I hope this will work on other Arch-based systems such as Antergos, Manjaro Linux etc. We already have written about installing Budgie, Deepin, MATE DEs in Arch linux. If you're interested, take a look at the following guides.

How To Install GNOME Desktop Environment In Arch Linux

First of all, make sure you have updated your Arch Linux system.

$ sudo pacman -Syu

After updating, reboot Arch Linux to apply the latest updates.

$ sudo reboot

Next, Install X Window System (xorg) using command:

$ sudo pacman -S xorg xorg-server

Finally, install GNOME Desktop environment using command:

$ sudo pacman -S gnome

This command will install all required applications including the gnome display manager for the GNOME desktip environment.

Start and enable gdm service:

$ sudo systemctl start gdm.service
$ sudo systemctl enable gdm.service

You can, however, use other popular DMs (display manager). Here is the popular graphical DMs used by most Linux operating systems.

  • LightDM — Cross-desktop display manager, can use various front-ends written in any toolkit.
  • LXDM — LXDE display manager. Can be used independent of the LXDE desktop environment.
  • MDM — MDM display manager, used in Linux Mint, a fork of GDM 2.
  • SDDM — QML-based display manager and successor to KDE4’s kdm; recommended for Plasma 5 and LXQt.
  • XDM — X display manager with support for XDMCP, host chooser.

For instance, if you want to install LXDM for GNOME DE, run:

$ sudo pacman -S lxdm

Stop any other running DMs:

$ sudo systemctl stop gdm.service
$ sudo systemctl disable gdm.service

And then start and enable lxdm service at boot:

$ sudo systemctl start lxdm.service
$ sudo systemctl enable lxdm.service

Finally, reboot your Arch system to log in to the GNOME desktop environment.

$ sudo reboot

Log in to the newly installed DE:

Here is how GNOME DE looks like in my Arch Linux VM.

Have any sound problems? Install pulseaudio package.

$ sudo pacman -S pulseaudio pulseaudio-alsa

That's it. Start using your Arch Linux GNOME desktop.

More good stuffs to come. Stay tuned!

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5 comments

thedroid September 5, 2018 - 11:29 pm

Awesome. Simple and precise. Much appreciated.

Reply
Larry Williams October 22, 2018 - 9:20 pm

One thing I would add is

pacman -S gnome-software-packagekit-plugin

to allow for package and updates installation via GNOME’s Software app.

Reply
Josh Freeno March 20, 2019 - 10:28 pm

Do not use Gnome software app with Arch. That would be kinda weird and most likely for sure break Gnome. It has nothing to do with pacman so yea not good advice.

Reply
David Kezek March 31, 2019 - 11:43 pm

This doesn’t work for me. Followed to the letter and get a black screen with a flashing cursor. Tried other managers lightdm and sddm. Nothing. I mean, I could get a GNOME desktop on Gentoo building from freaking source. How is this more complicated? Apparently a few others on Reddit have also had GDM fail.

Reply
Steven June 18, 2019 - 10:26 pm

I got the same result.

Reply

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