How to Upgrade to KDE Plasma 5.21 from 5.20

2 min

The KDE team announced the release of KDE Plasma 5.21 with many new features. In this quick guide, we explain the steps to upgrade to KDE Plasma 5.21 from 5.20. And give you a quick post update feedback.

The KDE Plasma 5.21 desktop brings several new features and improvements. This is probably one of the big releases from the team in terms of core-updates such as Wayland improvements, KWin changes. On the look and feel side, a new Global theme Breeze twilight is introduced, a shiny new wallpaper called ‘Milky Way’.

You can checkout the feature highlights of KDE Plasma 5.21 here.

If you are running earlier version of KDE Plasma, this is how you can upgrade to the latest version.

How to Upgrade KDE Plasma 5.21

Make sure to close all the running applications and save your in-progress work before starting the upgrade process.

If you are running, KDE Plasma 5.20 in KDE Neon, Or any rolling release distributions such as Arch Linux, Manjaro, or any other distro, you can open the KDE utility Discover and click check for update.

You can verify the updates whether Plasma 5.21 is available. See below.

Plasma Updates in Discover
Plasma Updates in Discover

Then you can start the upgrade process by clicking ‘Update All’.

For KDE Neon you can also, run the below commands from the terminal to start the upgrade process.

sudo apt update
Check the latest packages
Check the latest packages
sudo pkcon update

After the upgrade is complete, reboot the system.

The new KDE Plasma 5.21 should be available for you to enjoy.

KDE Plasma 5.21
KDE Plasma 5.21

Post Upgrade Feedback

After I ran the upgrade on my test system, everything went smooth. I must say, the KDE Plasma team did a very good job for the upgrade process to work flawlessly.

The first reboot after the upgrade took around 1.5 minutes (approx) additional time for the Plasma login screen to appear. Which is fine, I believe.

The custom wallpaper did not change to the new Plasma wallpaper. This is also expected. The upgrade should not change any other user customization. Unfortunately, the new wallpaper is not displayed in the Desktop Settings -> Wallpaper in the first boot. Not sure why. But after I did another reboot, it worked fine – I can see the Milky Way wallpaper in the wallpaper dialog.

So overall, it is a very good release and flawless so far in my test. The response of the desktop itself is faster than earlier Plasma 5.20 thanks to KWin changes and other performance improvements.

Enjoy KDE!


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