Install KDE 4 on Windows

January 28, 2008
Not even a month has passed since KDE 4.0 has been officially released. Already the Windows port of KDE 4.0 is functional. Nay, you can really install many KDE 4.0 applications on Windows 9x/2000/XP (Vista users please excuse) via an installer.

The installer as such is a small piece of software which pulls the required packages from the remote repository and installs them on your Windows machine. It also automatically downloads any packages which are required to satisfy any dependencies which makes it very user friendly.

The download for me took a long time since the installer had to pull in over 400 MB of packages. But once all the necessary packages finished downloading, the installer then proceeded to install all the packages in the specified location. In my case KDE 4.0 applications were installed in C:\kde4 directory.

There are a number of applications already such as the KDE games, KWrite, Konqueror, Dolphin file manager and so on and all of them worked on my machine. I have to concede that other than the KDE games which played quite well, most other software is at the least, still buggy. Konqueror and KWrite guzzles up memory like there is no tomorrow. The Konsole (KDE terminal) has yet to be ported to Windows and so you cannot access the terminal from within Konqueror. Dolphin complains that it cannot find the home directory each time I open it in Windows. KWrite is a lot slow in opening up and so on.

But these chinks are sure to be ironed out soon. The complete build system of KDE 4 is ready. KDE 4 on Windows currently support two compilers namely Mingw and Microsoft Visual C++. Since Qt 4 is truly a cross platform library and KDE 4 being built using Qt 4, it is only a matter of time before you see people using KDE applications on Windows. Who knows, perhaps this could be one more reason which will prompt more and more people to embrace Linux.. or maybe not.

Check out a few screenshots of the installer and KDE 4.0 applications running on Windows. You can download the installer from

Fig: KDE 4 Windows installer

Fig: Basic setup - choose the installation mode

Fig: Select proxy settings for your machine if any.

Fig: Select the most appropriate mirror

Fig: Choose the packages

Fig: The installer settings (most important section of installer)

Fig: The installer does automatic dependency resolution.

Fig: Installation completed dialog box

Fig: Dolphin file manager and a card game running natively in Windows XP

Fig: Two KDE4 games and KWrite

Fig: Konqueror running natively in Windows XP


  • naseer

    Is there a way to install Konsole in conjunction with cygwin ?

  • Is there a way to disable MSwindows window management and desktop?

    This is only useful if KDE takes over the desktop. Otherwise, you're adding a huge memory requirement over an already resource impaired system.

  • quangntenemy

    Sounds cool but isn't it just KDE applications not KDE itself?

  • Glenn

    Need Kubuntu-Like functionality?
    Try andLinux.
    It is pretty cool.
    I am installing openarena from XP now. Lets see how it goes :)