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Template:Article summary start Template:Article summary text Template:Article summary heading Template:Article summary wiki Template:Article summary wiki Template:Article summary end Wayland is a new windowing protocol for Linux. Utilization of Wayland requires changes to and re-installation of parts of your system's software. For more information on Wayland see its homepage.

Warning: Wayland is under heavy development. Support can not be guaranteed and it may not function as you expect.


Currently Wayland will only work with on a system that is utilizing KMS.


Wayland is most probably installed on your system already as it is an indirect dependency of gtk2 and gtk3. If it is not installed, you will find the wayland package in the official repositories.


As Wayland is only a library, it is useless on its own. To use it, you need a compositor (like Weston), Weston demo applications, Qt5 with Wayland plugin, and/or GTK+ with Wayland support.



You need to install weston from the official repositories.


Now that Wayland and its requirements are installed you should be ready to test it out. Try switching to a terminal and running:

$ weston-launch
  • You need to be in the video group for Weston to start; this command is not supposed to be run as root and doing that may freeze your VT.
  • If you get an LLVM assertion failure, you need to rebuild mesa without Gallium LLVM until this problem is fixed. This may imply disabling some drivers which require LLVM.

You may also try exporting the following, if having problems with hardware drivers:

$ export EGL_DRIVER=/usr/lib/egl/egl_gallium.so

It is possible to run Weston inside a running X session:

$ weston

Then at a TTY you can run the demos. To launch a terminal emulator:

$ weston-terminal

To move flowers around the screen:

$ weston-flower 

To test the frame protocol (runs glxgears):

$ weston-gears

To display images:

$ weston-image image1.jpg image2.jpg...

To display PDF Files:

$ weston-view doc1.pdf doc2.pdf...

GUI libraries

(See details on the official website)


You need to install gtk3 from the official repositories, which now has the Wayland backend enabled.

With GTK+ 3.0, GTK+ gained support for multiple backends at runtime and can switch between backends in the same way Qt can with lighthouse.

When both Wayland and X backends are enabled, GTK+ will default to the X11 backend, but this can be overridden by modifying an environment variable: GDK_BACKEND=wayland.


You need to install qt5-base and the wayland plugin qt5-qtwayland-gitAUR.

To run a Qt5 app with the Wayland plugin, set QT_QPA_PLATFORM=wayland-egl.


The Clutter toolkit has a Wayland backend that allows it to run as a Wayland client. The backend is enabled in the official package in extra.

To run a Clutter app on Wayland, set CLUTTER_BACKEND=wayland.


Benjamin Franzke is working on a port of SDL to Wayland, it's available in his sdl-wayland repo on freedesktop.org. Further development upon Benjamins work was done by Andre Heider in his wayland branch of libsdl. Scott Moreau picked up where others left and fixed the library to work with 1.0 protocol. You can find his work in wayland branch of SDL repository.

To run a SDL application on Wayland, set SDL_VIDEODRIVER=wayland.


EFL has complete Wayland support. To run a EFL application on Wayland, see Wayland project page.

Window managers and desktop shells


KDE 4.11 beta supports starting KWin under Wayland system compositor. There is currently no support for using KWin as a session compositor.


GNOME is currently ported to Wayland and will be available in a future version. For details look into the GNOME wiki.

Pure Wayland

Warning: Some really quick notes on installing a pure (no X11) Wayland system on Arch Linux. This is from source and installed into /usr/local. May break your system. You have been warned. (by elethiomel@gmail.com)

First install a base Arch Linux install with base and base-devel. Do not install xorg or any of its libraries

Wayland, DRM, Pixman, libxkbcommon
$ pacman -S wayland libdrm pixman libxkbcommon
$ git clone git://anongit.freedesktop.org/mesa/mesa
$ cd mesa
$ CFLAGS=-DMESA_EGL_NO_X11_HEADERS ./autogen.sh --prefix=/usr/local --enable-gles2 --disable-gallium-egl --with-egl-platforms=wayland,drm --enable-gbm --enable-shared-glapi --with-gallium-drivers=r300,r600,swrast,nouveau --disable-glx --disable-xlib
$ make
$ make install

Note - no glx/gl or xcb - EGL only.

$ pacman -S libpng
$ git clone git://anongit.freedesktop.org/cairo
$ cd cairo
$ CFLAGS=-DMESA_EGL_NO_X11_HEADERS ./autogen.sh --prefix=/usr/local/  --disable-xcb  --enable-glesv2 
$ make
$ make install
$ git clone git://anongit.freedesktop.org/wayland/weston
$ cd weston/
$ CFLAGS="-DMESA_EGL_NO_X11_HEADERS" ./autogen.sh --prefix=/usr/local/ --with-cairo-glesv2 --disable-xwayland --disable-x11-compositor --disable-xwayland-test
$ make
$ make install

See also

See also