I recently did a netinstall of Debian Squeeze and during the install I unticked Desktop Environment because I didn't want to install Gnome as the default DE. So I end up with a command line during boot. Now I want to install LXDE and I was wondering which to install: xorg or xserver-xorg (or both) before installing LXDE?

And yes, I realized later that I could have chosen LXDE as an alternative DE during install but I don't want to reinstall again.


Short answer:

aptitude install lxde xorg

will do.

Longer answer:

The aptitude show command will show you a description of a package and its dependencies from the command line, so you can use that to decide whether to install the package or not. Keep in mind that aptitude and apt-get have automated dependency resolution, so package lxde will install the parts of the X Window System that it needs. (And it's a bug to report if it does not.)

So, on to checking xorg:

$ aptitude show xorg
Provides: x-window-system, x-window-system-core
Description: X.Org X Window System
 This metapackage provides the components for a standalone workstation running the X Window System.  It provides the X libraries, an X server, a set of fonts,
 and a group of basic X clients and utilities. 

So you definitely want xorg installed, whatever desktop system you are going to use.

  • Or search the category "Tasks" in aptitude and select the group with your favorite desktop. – Rufo El Magufo Aug 7 '11 at 16:40

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