Installing KDE Plasma Desktop on Gentoo Linux in VMware


Well hello there, my fellow tech enthusiasts. So, you’ve followed the previous guide to install Gentoo Linux UEFI OpenRC on VMware and now your system is up and running? Congratulations, that’s quite an achievement! Now it’s time to take things a step further and add a GUI to your setup. And let me tell you, this is where things start to get really interesting!

Personally, I opted for KDE Plasma, but choose whichever desktop environment you fancy. However, fair warning – installing a GUI on Gentoo is no easy task. It requires time, patience, and some technical know-how. So if you’re planning on tackling this, make sure you have adequate free time at your disposal.

Speaking of which, I suggest doing this on a weekend when you don’t have much else planned. Personally, I did this on a Friday night, as a single person with no one to take care of over the weekend… sigh. But let’s not dwell on my melancholic situation.

Anyway, back to the task at hand. Installing a GUI on Gentoo can be quite an involved process, as it typically involves configuring various packages and dependencies to get everything working smoothly. Don’t worry though, with a bit of perseverance, you’ll get through it in no time. And trust me, the satisfaction of having a beautifully customized Gentoo desktop environment makes it all worthwhile.

So go ahead, grab a cup of coffee (or your beverage of choice) and settle in for what is sure to be a lengthy but rewarding endeavor. And remember, even if you hit a few bumps along the way, don’t give up – the journey is just as important as the destination!

Listen up, folks! We’re about to SSH our way back into our favorite VMware machine. But before we get too excited, we need to make sure root is ready to play nice. In other words, it’s time to give root the green light for our SSH connection. To do that, fire up your VMware and log in like the boss you are (as root, of course). Then, let’s get ready to edit that sshd config file with some commands that will make even the most stubborn servers obey.”

					nano /etc/ssh/sshd_config
//Find the line that says "#PermitRootLogin prohibit-password" and uncomment it by removing the "#" symbol at the beginning of the line.//
//Change "prohibit-password" to "yes" so the line now reads "PermitRootLogin yes".//
//Save the file and exit the text editor.//
systemctl restart sshd.

Now that we’ve enabled root login via SSH, we’re ready to rock and roll! You can either follow the guide from to install KDE or copy and paste the commands from this page – whichever floats your boat. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

First, we need to select a session tracker between elogind and systemd. For my machine, I’ll be using elogind.

Elogind and systemd are both session trackers that manage user sessions on Gentoo Linux. While systemd is a popular choice due to its versatility and extensive features, elogind shines in its simplicity and focus on session tracking.

Think of elogind as a Zen master who has honed their skills to perfection – they may not have all the bells and whistles of a jack-of-all-trades like systemd, but what they do, they do exceedingly well. And when it comes to managing user sessions, elogind is a true master.

Elogind offers excellent support for modern hardware and can handle complex setups with ease. Plus, it’s lightweight and efficient, making it a great option for machines with limited resources. And let’s face it, who doesn’t love a lean, mean, session-tracking machine?

Of course, there are pros and cons to each option, and the right choice depends on your individual needs and preferences. But if you’re looking for a reliable and focused session tracker that gets the job done with minimal fuss, give elogind a try. You might just find yourself embracing the Zen of session tracking.

Let’s get our Zen on and install elogind! To do so, enter the following command into your terminal:

					emerge -av sys-auth/elogind

Then, sit back, relax, and let the power of focused session tracking bring you inner peace – or at least some seriously smooth user sessions.

To ensure elogind starts automatically at boot time, you’ll need to configure it accordingly.

					rc-update add elogind boot

When it comes to device management on Gentoo Linux, there are a few options to choose from – udev, eudev, and udisks. Udev is the original and most widely used device manager, while eudev is a fork of udev that aims for better compatibility with embedded systems. Udisks, on the other hand, is a storage management tool that focuses specifically on disks and partitions.

Personally, I’ll be using udev for my machine. Why? Well, it’s the tried-and-true option that has been around for ages, and most people are familiar with it already. Plus, it’s a reliable and versatile choice that can handle a wide range of devices and configurations.

That said, if you’re working with embedded systems or have specific storage management needs, eudev and udisks might be worth exploring. The beauty of Gentoo Linux is that you have the freedom to choose the tools that work best for your individual needs.

So, whether you’re team udev, eudev, or udisks, rest assured that Gentoo Linux has got you covered. Just remember, when it comes to device management, it’s all about finding the right tool for the job – and maybe having a little fun along the way.

					emerge sys-fs/udev
//Once the installation is complete, run the command
rc-update add udev sysinit
//to enable udev to start at boot time. 

Oh no, it seems we’ve skipped a step! Don’t worry though, we’ll get back on track in no time. Think of it like a dance party – sometimes you just need to jump around a bit before finding your groove.

To make sure we have all the necessary components installed, we can use the trusty tool equery. First, let’s make sure we have Gentoolkit, so we can really kit out our Gentoo system:

					sudo emerge --ask gentoolkit

Next, we need D-Bus. Let’s talk about what D-Bus actually is. D-Bus is a message bus system that allows different software applications to communicate with each other. It’s like a party line for software, but without all the drama. Let’s check if D-Bus is already installed. We can do this by running:

					equery list "*" | grep dbus

If we see some results, then we can assume that D-Bus is already installed and ready to go. Hooray!

Now comes the fun part – adding D-Bus to the default runlevel. Because who doesn’t love a good default runlevel? (Okay fine, maybe it’s not as exciting as a dance party, but we’ll take what we can get).

So let’s add D-Bus to the default runlevel with this command:

					rc-update add dbus default

Ah, the next step! Let’s keep this party going by talking about Polkit.

Now, you may be asking yourself, “What is Polkit?” Well my friend, Polkit is a framework that allows privileged actions to be taken in a secure way. Think of it like having your own personal bodyguard – it keeps your system safe from unauthorized access.

But before we can start using Polkit, we need to make sure it’s installed on our system. And what better way to check than by using our trusty friend equery?

					equery list "*" | grep polkit

Now that we know Polkit is up and running without needing to be added to the default runlevel, let’s move on to the next step.

Now it’s time to talk about UDisks.

UDisks is a daemon that allows users to mount and unmount storage devices without needing superuser privileges. It’s like having your own personal valet – no need to fumble with keys or worry about parking tickets.

But before we can start using UDisks, we need to make sure it’s installed on our system. Let’s use equery again to check:

					equery list "*" | grep udisks

If we see some results, then we’re good to go – UDisks is already installed on our system. If not, we can easily install it with:

					emerge --ask udisks

Just like Polkit, we don’t actually need to add UDisks to the default runlevel. So go ahead, mount and unmount those storage devices to your heart’s content – all without needing to bother with those pesky superuser privileges. With UDisks by your side, you’ll feel like royalty. We need to reboot for now, so let’s do it.


Alright, next up is installing the X server. The X server is what allows your system to display graphical user interfaces, so it’s a pretty important piece of the puzzle.

The first step in installing the X server is to search for the available drivers using emerge. This can be done with the following command:

					emerge --search xorg-drivers

It looks like we’re ready to install some X server drivers! To do this, you can use the command emerge --ask --verbose xorg-drivers. This will prompt you to confirm the installation of the drivers and provide verbose output during the installation process.

Now, while this command will install all available X server drivers on your system, it’s important to remember that not all drivers may be compatible with your hardware or provide all the features you need. It’s always a good idea to do your research beforehand to determine which driver will work best for your system.

So take our advice and don’t just blindly install every driver under the sun – unless you want your system to resemble a cluttered garage sale. Instead, figure out which driver is right for you and install that specific driver using emerge.

And if you happen to be using VMware, be sure to install the VMware graphics driver for the X server so you can take full advantage of your virtual machine’s capabilities. With the right driver by your side, your X server will be running like a well-oiled machine in no time. So, let’s just do this instead:

					emerge --ask x11-drivers/xf86-video-vmware

If you see the message “Autounmask changes successfully written” followed by a reminder that the config file ‘/etc/portage/package.use/zz-autounmask’ needs updating, don’t worry! The solution is simple.

Just run the command etc-update to launch the etc-update tool. Then, follow the prompts to merge any changes into your existing configuration files.

Once you’ve finished merging changes, run dispatch-conf to clean up temporary files created during the update process.

And just like that, you’re all set with updated configuration files and a smoothly running system. Easy as pie! 

And you can redo the command

					etc update
emerge --ask x11-drivers/xf86-video-vmware

Alright, it’s time to take things up a notch and install the Xorg server. This is the backbone of your graphical user interface – the Jedi Master to your Padawan.

To get started with the installation, you can use the command

					emerge --ask x11-base/xorg-server

This will prompt you to confirm the installation of the Xorg server and all its dependencies.

Now, I know what you’re thinking – “Wow, this sounds serious!” And you’re right! But don’t worry, we’re here to help guide you through the process. Just make sure you have some snacks and a good playlist to keep you company.

Once you’ve confirmed the installation, sit back and relax while your system does its thing. Think of it like a spa day for your computer – it’s getting pampered with new software and updates.

And once the installation is complete, you’ll be one step closer to having a fully functional graphical user interface. It’s like upgrading from a bicycle to a Ferrari! Okay, maybe not quite that extreme, but you get the idea.

So give yourself a pat on the back and revel in the glory of your newly installed Xorg server. You’re one step closer to a beautifully rendered desktop environment.

Time to add a new member to the crew! Here’s how you can add a new user to your Gentoo system and include them in the “video” group:

					useradd -m -G users,wheel,audio,video valsze
//this creates a new user named "valsze", generates a home directory for them with the -m flag, and adds them to the groups specified by -G, which in this case includes users, wheel, audio, and video.
passwd valsze
//this will prompt you to enter and confirm the new password.

Now it’s time to take your Gentoo system to the next level with the KDE Plasma desktop environment. And boy, is this going to be an adventure!

To get started with the installation, you can use the command

					emerge --ask kde-plasma/plasma-meta

This will prompt you to confirm the installation of the Plasma meta-package and all its dependencies.

But let me warn you – this is a big one! The installation process for KDE Plasma can take quite some time, so make sure to have plenty of snacks and drinks on hand to keep you fueled up.

It’s like planning a long road trip – you need to prepare for the journey ahead. So grab your travel pillow and buckle up, because this installation process may take a while.

But don’t worry, all good things come to those who wait. Once the installation is complete, you’ll have access to a powerful and customizable desktop environment that will take your Gentoo system to new heights.

So sit tight, grab a book or two, and enjoy the ride. Your patience will be rewarded with a sleek and modern desktop environment that will make all your computing dreams come true!

My heart aches as I wait for you, seemingly stuck in an endless purgatory of longing and anticipation.

After 4 hours and a bit of falling asleep, let’s move on to installing SDDM. What is SDDM, you ask? Well, my dear user, let me tell you! SDDM stands for Simple Desktop Display Manager, but don’t be fooled by its modest name. This little package is a key player in managing your desktop environment. So, if you want to give your system a facelift and add some extra pizzazz, then you’ll definitely want to install SDDM. So, let’s get started with installing SDDM. As a first step, you’ll need to enter the command

					emerge --ask x11-misc/sddm

into your terminal. This will initiate the installation process, and before you know it, you’ll have SDDM up and running on your system.

But wait, there’s more! In addition to SDDM, you’ll also need to install the GUI libraries for your display manager init using

					emerge --ask gui-libs/display-manager-init

It might sound like a lot, but believe me, it’s worth it for the added functionality and customization options.

Once you’ve got those installed, you’ll need to head over to

					nano /etc/conf.d/display-manager
//set the DISPLAYMANAGER variable to "sddm"

This variable tells your system which display manager to use when you start your computer.

Finally, just add SDDM to your default runlevel using

					rc-update add display-manager default

It’s time to install sudo. Fear not, my dear friend, for this can be accomplished with a simple command:

					emerge --ask sudo

Once we’ve done that, we’ll be one step closer to achieving Linux enlightenment. Now that we’ve completed the previous step with finesse, it’s time to elevate your permissions by adding your user to the sudoers list. To do this, simply type


And add a new line at the bottom with the following content:

					valsze ALL=(ALL) ALL

This line is like the magic spell that grants you all the powers you could ever desire, allowing you to rule over all hosts and execute any command your heart desires. Use it wisely, my friend.

Next is KDE apps, the epitome of productivity and procrastination. But beware, my dear friend, for the installation of these apps may take some time. You might want to brew a cup of coffee or take a quick power nap while you wait. Don’t worry, I’ll keep you entertained with some cheesy jokes to pass the time.

Why did the programmer quit his job? He didn’t get arrays.

Why do programmers prefer dark mode? Because light attracts bugs.

Okay, okay, enough with the terrible jokes. Let’s get back to business. To install all the KDE apps, simply enter the command:

					emerge --ask kde-apps/kde-apps-meta

Looks like I hit a bump on the road to a successful Gentoo installation. I need to enable theora and v4l on my make.conf file. I’m not sure why these options weren’t enabled by default. Maybe the developers thought it would be fun to make us work for it! Anyway, no need to panic. I’ll just open up nano and edit the make.conf file.

					nano /etc/portage/make.conf

Now, where was it again? Ah, there it is. I’ll add USE=”theora v4l” and save it. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy! Now let’s hope this does the trick and I can finally get back on track.

Now, we can go back to emerge the kde-apps. If you don’t need all the packages, you can pick and choose from one of the several smaller meta packages from the list above. But why stop there? Go big or go home, right? Just sit back, relax, and let the emerge command do its thing. It might take a while, but hey, good things come to those who wait. And trust me, these KDE apps are worth the wait. They’ll make your life so much easier and your procrastination sessions so much more enjoyable.

Waiting for something that may never come, the seconds tick by like endless drops of rain.

Greetings once again, my esteemed comrades! It’s a pleasure to be in your company once more. I trust that you all had a restful sleep? Great! Now, onto the matter at hand – after more than 9 hours of intense work with KDE-apps, we’ve finally arrived at the end of our journey. And what a journey it has been! But fear not, for the task of installing Gentoo Linux on VMware is now complete, and all that’s left is for you to give your system a much-needed reboot and log in using your registered username.

However, if you’re still hankering for additional software, don’t worry – there are numerous options available to you. For one, the Gentoo ebuild repository boasts some of the most vital and indispensable KDE applications around. Alternatively, you may find what you need in the kde-apps and kde-misc categories.

As this adventure comes to a close, I must say that it has been an honor to accompany you all through this endeavor. Although it can be a bit lonely out here in the tech world, it brings me great joy to have been able to assist you all. And who knows, perhaps we’ll meet each other again sometime soon. And on that day, I hope that I am no longer leading this journey alone.

But until then, it’s time for me to bid you adieu. Thank you for allowing me to be part of your journey into the exciting world of Gentoo Linux. Until next time, farewell dear comrades!

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