I have multiple desktop environments installed, like kubuntu-desktop, lubuntu-desktop. Also I need to switch between these desktops frequently. So is there any possible way that I don't need to log out and log back in to switch my desktop from gnome to kubuntu?

  • 1
    You could create a second user, choose another tty by typing CTRL - ALT - Fn and start X. I think it is possible to configure your display manager to show its login screen on that second tty, but I have never tried. – user85164 May 10 '13 at 16:09
  • Could you explain why you "need to switch between these desktops frequently"? – user25656 May 10 '13 at 17:18

Maybe it will help you: I'm currently running KDE but have LXDE installed, and I managed to launch LXDE panel and some services with just typing startlxde command. However, this doesn't close KDE's panels, so I would have to kill them manually (with killall plasma-desktop or so).

I also managed to launch RazorQt with startrazor.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure whether all DEs provide such bootstrap commands. Xfce4, for example, provides startxfce4, but it can't be run within an existing X session.

Anyway, I think you don't need to run the whole DE. Try starting just window manager and desktop, e.g. kwin --replace and plasma-desktop for KDE.

P.S. Kubuntu is not a DE. KDE is a DE. :-)


dm-tool is a tool to communicate with the LightDM display manager.

  • Run: $ dm-tool add-nested-seat

  • Next login using any desktop environment

  • To run in full screen Xephyr :1 -br -fullscreen & dm-tool add-local-x-seat 1

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