Best Linux Desktop Environments

7 Best Linux Desktop Environments in 2023

Best Linux Desktop Environments in 2023 – What are the desktop environments on Linux? What are the advantages and disadvantages? What DEs are the most popular? Is there a desktop environment in Linux that is similar to Windows in appearance? Find all the answers here. Please use the table of contents below to jump straight to your topic. Thanks.

Linux , which is closely related to CLI commands , turns out that nowadays many use the desktop environment (DE) as a graphical interface. In our opinion, this is a step towards approaching common users to start migrating from Windows to Linux. Mainly for those who are still using pirated operating systems.

With DE, ordinary users can use Linux without having good technical skills. This is because the main function of DE is to make it easier for users to do many things with just clicks.

So it can be concluded that the desktop environment is a graphical user interface (GUI; Graphical User Interface ) on the Linux operating system that presents a set of icons, toolbars, wallpapers, and shortcuts, which allows users to use Linux with a mouse and keyboard like on the Windows operating system.

What kinds of desktop environments exist in Linux? Here he is …

Best Linux Desktop Environments To Try in 2023

As we said above, there are several DEs that you can use on Linux. Although usually the DE is bundled with the installed distro. We mean, when you install a Linux distro , usually the DE will be installed right away. So, what are the existing DE?


The first desktop environment is GNOME . When compared to all the existing DEs, it can be said that GNOME is the most preferred by novice users. The reason is that GNOME’s appearance is very attractive, modern, and easy to customize.

But did you know that GNOME was initially disliked even by Linus Torvalds (the founder of Linux) himself? The reason is because it is difficult to customize so it tends to be difficult. But over time, these criticisms made GNOME improve and now it is a DE with the best appearance with various customizations.

Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of GNOME:

Advantages of GNOME

  • Modern and stylish
  • Easy to customize
  • Smooth transition
  • User friendly alias suitable for beginners

Disadvantages of GNOME

  • Wasteful power consumption
  • Uses a lot of resources such as RAM and GPU
  • Not suitable for laptops or computers with low specifications due to weight


KDE or the abbreviation of Kool Desktop Environment is a DE that takes Windows as its inspiration. In our opinion, this is to make it easier for users who want to migrate from Windows to Linux.

KDE takes up a lot of resources, it’s just not as wasteful as KDE. So, what are the advantages and disadvantages of KDE?

Pros of KDE

  • Modern and Windows-like look. Suitable for early adopters migrating from these operating systems
  • Easy to customize
  • Has a lot of compatible software

Disadvantages of KDE

  • Somewhat wasteful of power and consuming a lot of resources
  • A bit heavy
  • Some components tend to be difficult to use and complicated


In second place is XFCE which stands for XForms Common Environment. This desktop environment is known for being lightweight and does not use up a lot of resources from a laptop or PC, so it can be installed on older devices. Therefore XFCE is no less popular than GNOME in terms of its approach with novice users.

XFCE is a project built by Olivier Fourdan in 1996 and continues to be developed by the community until now. What are the advantages and disadvantages of XFCE? Here are some of them:

Advantages of XFCE

  • Light
  • Can be installed on an old PC or laptop
  • User friendly for new Linux users

Disadvantages of XFCE

  • The default UI/UX is less modern
  • Few installed applications


Next is LXDE which stands for Lightweight X11 Desktop Environment . As the name suggests, this desktop environment is very light so it can be installed on older computers with low hardware specifications.

However, if one puts the emphasis on performance, then something else is sacrificed. In the case of LXDE, it sacrifices style.

Broadly speaking, LXDE is Openbox with the LX panel embedded in it so that it has a more user-friendly appearance . Here are the advantages and disadvantages of LXDE:

Advantages of LXDE

  • Light because it doesn’t take up a lot of resources
  • User-friendly display
  • Support almost all Linux distros

Disadvantages of LXDE

  • The appearance is less modern so it doesn’t appeal to some people

Read Also: Top 10 Most Stable Linux Distro in 2023

11 Most Popular Linux Distros For 2023

Ubuntu Budgie

Budgie desktop is a DE developed by Solus Project. For those who don’t know, Solus is an independent Linux distro, where they use GNOME technologies such as GTK to develop Budgie as its desktop environment .

Broadly speaking, Budgie is a mix of a modern UI with a traditional look. This makes it like Cinnamon which is balanced between performance and style. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of Budgie:

Advantages of Budgies

  • Modern UI and elegant appearance
  • Compact
  • Pretty good user experience

Lack of Budgies

  • Only available on some Linux distros


MATE is a desktop environment that uses the re-customized GNOME 2 source code. Some say MATE was developed by users who were disappointed with GNOME 3.

Even though it is based on GNOME 2, the development team has been really keen on customizing this DE so that since its appearance in 2011, MATE has become one of the most popular and loved DEs.

Here are the advantages and disadvantages of MATE:

Advantages of MATE

  • Tends to be lightweight like XFCE and LXDE
  • Simple display
  • Easy to customize

Disadvantages of MATE

  • The display may look old considering that GNOME 2 is the main base

Cinnamon Desktop Environment

Cinnamon, one of the developments of GNOME 3, is a desktop environment specially made for Linux Mint. Cinnamon is known as a DE which is made similar to Windows, thereby helping novice Linux users to learn Linux and love it.

Cinnamon tries to pass itself off as a modern DE while maintaining a traditional look. This is to minimize the use of resources that are too large, but still comfortable to use.

Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of Cinnamon:

Advantages of Cinnamon

  • Attractive and soft appearance
  • Familiar for new Linux users
  • Very easy to customize
  • Balance between performance and style

Disadvantages of Cinnamon

  • May not be suitable for some users
  • Difficult to install on other than Linux Mint

Desktop Environment FAQs on Linux

What desktop environment is similar to Windows?

KDE and Cinnamon.

Which desktop environment is the most popular and easy to use?

If you are familiar with the appearance of Windows, then the easiest to use is DE Cinnamon or KDE. But if you want a more modern look, you can choose Gnome.

What desktop environment is lightweight?


The final word

Thereby. Those are the various popular desktop environments on Linux. We can’t list them all because there are many DEs available. We list only the most reviewed DEs.

So, after knowing what a desktop environment is and what it’s all about, are you ready to migrate to Linux instead of using pirated Windows?

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