[Debian] Install MATE desktop environment

Now that GNOME 2 is dead in favour of the not-so-good GNOME 3, users are still able to experience their solid and favourite desktop experience with MATE.

Installing it is really simple; this guide will describe how to add it to Debian Wheezy (stable release).

Note: Although it would be desirable to add it on a clean and minimal (no desktop environment) Debian installation, it is also possible to do so on a full system replacing its current desktop environment.

First we need to add MATE's repository to our /etc/apt/sources.list file:

nano /etc/apt/sources.list

and add this line:

deb http://repo.mate-desktop.org/debian wheezy main

Then we perform the full mate desktop installation along with LightDM display manager:

apt-get update && apt-get install lightdm mate-archive-keyring mate-desktop-environment-extra

of course you can replace LightDM with another display manager of your choice.

If you're doing this on a clean, minimal system, you may also want to install these packages to create the standard user folders structure under their home directory:

apt-get install xdg-user-dirs xdg-user-dirs-gtk xdg-utils

Reboot and you're set.

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