Which Desktop for Your Korora?

Table of Contents

So you finally decided Korora is the distro for you. However you are faced with a daunting task of which flavor or desktop environment (DE) to use. Korora currently offers: XFCE, MATE, Cinnamon, KDE Plasma, & Gnome. Exactly what is the DE? It is a complete graphical interface for the end user that ties the various software systems together. Most proprietary operating systems implement only give you the choice of one DE. However Linux is about choice so the end user can choose which DE to implement!

There are advantages and disadvantages to each DE. Two questions can simplify the process. What type of desktop experience the user needs? What type of hardware will be running Korora? These suggestions below are only that, suggestions. Have fun and explore the DE world with Korora under that digital skin.

The basic hardware requirements for Korora are: 64 bit Intel Compatible CPU, 2GB RAM, and 20GB of disk space. Any of the DEs’ can run on this hardware requirements, however some of the DEs’ may not meet the end user expectations due to poor performance.


While some DEs may include several native apps that are developed specifically for those environments all versions of Korora come with a full range of applications. See here for more details.

Now let's review each of these DEs’ in further detail.


XFCE aims for a lightweight environment that is low on RAM usage. XFCE first was created in 1996 by Olivier Fourdan. It allows older hardware to operate well on Korora. It is a very stable DE that can be customised using plugins to interact with user settings. Xfce runs well with 2GB RAM and even better with more. It can be configured to mimic a traditional DE with some effort. However it has fewer native apps when compared to the other four environments.


MATE is another lightweight environment like XFCE. MATE is derived from the un-maintained Gnome 2 code. It is one of the newest DEs, that first debuted in 2011. XFCE is marginally faster, but MATE is light on RAM consumption too. It has elements of various Gnome apps, but has more native apps that XFCE. MATE aims to be a complete and modern desktop. It works well with 2GB RAM or higher.


Cinnamon started as a Gnome 3 code derivative; Cinnamon has a nice array of native apps. It was developed in 2011 for the Linux Mint distribution. Today this DE is popular and is spread across numerous Linux Distros. It matches the mainstream operating systems in terms of menu layout and graphical interface. Therefore this desktop is commonly recommended for a new Linux user, due to using a common visual layout similar to Windows. However the graphical intensive approach is best used with 4 GB RAM or higher

KDE Plasma

Matthias Ettrich started KDE in 1996. It is now known as KDE Plasma. This DE is very widespread across the BSD and Linux communities. It is very will maintained and supported. This DE has a vast array of apps used in the software centre. Like Cinnamon it mirrors the traditional layout, however it is a refined product. A new Linux user can quickly learn KDE Plasma however there are many advanced features to satisfy those looking for something special. This DE is best used with 4GB RAM or higher on your hardware.


Is the current flagship DE for Fedora. Gnome is built on top of a shell and works with extensions, somewhat similar to the internet browser extensions. It started on March 3rd, 1999. This DE is streamline and places an emphasis on accessibility by all individuals. The Gnome Shell can be disabled, and the Classic Gnome DE can be activated. Like KDE Plasma it has a robust software centre and easy layout. Yet the Gnome shell requires 4GB RAM or higher on your hardware.


Which desktop you choose is a matter of personal choice. All the Korora desktops are available as live systems that can be tried without installation on your computer. So you can test drive them all and see which one you prefer. You don't need to limit yourself to just one either. It is possible to install others along side you first choice, see this guide.

We hope this guide was useful in determining the appropriate desktop environment for your Korora computer!