In some instructions explain that to install Mate Desktop in Ubuntu 18.04, we must execute:

sudo apt install ubuntu-mate-desktop

Others mention:

sudo apt install mate-desktop-environment


sudo apt install mate-core

And some more...

mate-desktop-environment-extras mate-dock-applet mate-applets

What is the difference between these packages and what is the correct way to install them, as the case may be? (comparing the results with Ubuntu Mate 18.04 distro, minimum and complete installation)


Due to the comments, I consider that I should add the following clarifying information:

Ubuntu Mate is a distro that is supposed to contain all the elements of the Mate desktop, however this is not true.

It includes: ubuntu-mate-desktop, mate-dock-applet, mate-applets, mate-desktop-environment-core

Does not include: mate-core, mate-desktop-environment-extras (This package includes: mate-desktop-environment)

It is because of this madness, that, in my opinion, the method of installing Debian (choosing which desktop we are going to work with) I think should be the standard, to avoid these problems (like the one I describe in my question)

1 Answer 1

  • ubuntu-mate-desktop is a comprehensive suite of software packages that will get the MATE environment up and running on your Ubuntu installation.

  • This includes many applications that are NOT part of MATE per-say but give you an overall useful environment to work in. Things like office productivity, web browser, games, etc.

  • mate-desktop-environment is a limited suite of software packages that MATE can integrate with nicely.

  • ubuntu-mate-desktop includes most, if not all, of mate-desktop-environment.

  • mate-desktop-environment does not include the non-MATE related/integrated components of ubuntu-mate-desktop.

  • mate-core is the bare bones MATE installation.

  • mate-desktop-environment and ubuntu-mate-desktop will include most of the packages from mate-core

  • mate-desktop-environment-extras, mate-dock-applet, and mate-applets` are a small selection of software to make MATE reasonably user friendly.

  • They are not necessarily included in mate-desktop-environment and ubuntu-mate-desktop.

  • They would be considered optional extras that add visual, integration and usability tweaks in addition to the basic requirements of the mate-desktop-environment and ubuntu-mate-desktop packages.

You can find out exactly what each package mentioned above would install on your system by running apt install -s followed by the appropriate package name. The -s is a simulation of what would happen. There's not much point in listing each and every component here, partly because the output would depend on what is already present on your system.

  • Your explanation is good but confusing in the last part and you use too many anglicisms and not a common language.
    – acgbox
    Jun 3, 2019 at 0:34
  • removed the 'bells and whistles'.
    – SHawarden
    Jun 3, 2019 at 0:49
  • Give some examples of the use (and installation) of these packages, to better understand your response. Thank you
    – acgbox
    Jun 3, 2019 at 1:14
  • @DKBose Thank you for the correction. Good contribution. I tried apt install -s mate-desktop-environment, within Ubuntu Mate 18.04 (since Ubuntu Mate is a distro contains all Mate Desktop packages), and simulates the installation, therefore, I think the phrase "ubuntu-mate-desktop includes mate-desktop-environment" is incorrect
    – acgbox
    Jun 3, 2019 at 2:05
  • 1
    @DKBose In that you are right. I also use VMs to avoid this. Thanks for your help. the subject is closed
    – acgbox
    Jun 3, 2019 at 2:21

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