Common Desktop Environment

From ArchWiki

The Common Desktop Environment is a desktop environment for Unix and OpenVMS, based on the Motif widget toolkit. It was part of the UNIX98 Workstation Product Standard, and was long the "classic" Unix desktop associated with commercial Unix workstations. Despite being a legacy environment, it is still kept alive with support for Linux systems as well.

Tip: CDE used to have issues such as running rpcbind in insecure mode or lack of 64 bit version. That has been taken care of with recent versions. 64 bit is usable, it is stable now, and rpcbind no longer requires insecure mode to be ran. Development for Common Desktop Environment is currently very active.


The base CDE system is installed through the cdesktopenvAUR AUR package.



The cdesktopenvAUR package supplies the dtlogin systemd service which upon starting will launch the CDE login manager.


CDE can be directly launched with startx (install xorg-xinit):

$ export PATH=$PATH:/usr/dt/bin
$ export LANG=C
$ startx /usr/dt/bin/Xsession