As per title, I'd like to install the development version (4.13) of xfwm4 insfead of the regular 4.12 since I've found out that it now supports vsync and opengl and thus removes tearing completely (i.e. no more need for Compton). Unfortunately the only way to install it seems to be from source but, while that's not usually a problem, I've read somewhere (I can't find it anymore) that I'd have to remove xfwm4 4.12 to install 4.13, and that worried me a bit. Also I tried looking something up on askubuntu but only got this question, upgrade xfce4 applications to the latest versions , that doesn't solve my "problem".

So the question is: is there a step-by-step guide or ppa that can ease the installation process? I know that arch has xfwm4-git in the aur but I can't seem yo find anything similar for Ubuntu. Thank you in advance for any help.


1 Answer 1


From Xubuntu's QA Experimental PPA

As mentioned by DK Bose, xfwm4-4.13 is available in the Xubuntu Experimental Repository. This might not be the bleeding edge release but allows for an easier install

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:xubuntu-dev/experimental
sudo apt-get update

and install it

sudo apt-get install xfwm4

From Debian Experimental

xfwm4-4.13 is available in the Debian Experimental Repository and is always the bleeding edge version that is installable from debian experimental. Note that this release might be unstable and possibly unusable. And since ubuntu uses the same packaging system (apt) as debian, one can add that to their sources and it would work.

This is however not recommended as the precompiled packages present in experimental would cause conflicts with the current versions of the packages in the ubuntu repositories, hence it's best to use apt's build-from-source features to get only xfwm4 and it's dependencies

To do this, open up your /etc/apt/sources.list and add this line

deb-src http://httpredir.debian.org/debian/ experimental main contrib non-free

now on the terminal, run the following commands to add the keys necessary for apt to trust the repository

gpg --keyserver pgpkeys.mit.edu --recv-key 8B48AD6246925553 7638D0442B90D010 04EE7237B7D453EC
gpg -a --export 8B48AD6246925553 7638D0442B90D010 04EE7237B7D453EC| sudo apt-key add -

now run

sudo apt-get update

to build all the dependencies for xfwm4

sudo apt-get build-dep xfwm4

and then to install it

sudo apt-get source --compile xfwm4
  • Ok, so just to be clear, if I wanted to follow the first method I'd have to remove xfwm4 first and then add the ppa and reinstall it? Or can I just add the ppa and install it directly?
    – dsSTORM
    Oct 14, 2018 at 7:52
  • @dsSTORM Adding the ppa and installing it directly should update it with no additional steps required
    – Amith KK
    Oct 14, 2018 at 7:55
  • I've just tried and it worked perfectly, thanks!
    – dsSTORM
    Oct 14, 2018 at 8:05
  • The Ubuntu package didn't actually fix the tearing problem for me. I ended up using compton for now. It's amazing that this is still a problem [2018]. x)
    – lnostdal
    Nov 23, 2018 at 3:43
  • 1
    I followed your steps for the Xubuntu QA Experimental PPA, but I still get: xfwm4 is already the newest version (4.12.5-1ubuntu0.18.04.1). I have added the PPA per your instructions and it appears in /etc/apt/sources.list.d. "apt-get update" ran without errors. Any ideas? Jun 25, 2019 at 13:23

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