Software & AppsOperating SystemLinux

How To Install Termite on Ubuntu Using Command Line

Ubuntu 13

In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the process of installing Termite on Ubuntu using the command line. Termite is a lightweight, minimalistic terminal emulator that is highly configurable, making it an excellent choice for power users.

Quick Answer

To install Termite on Ubuntu using the command line, you need to update your system, install the required dependencies, clone and install the VTE-NG repository, clone and install the Termite repository, and set Termite as the default terminal emulator.


Before we start, ensure that you have the following:

  • Ubuntu 20.04 or later installed on your system.
  • A user account with sudo privileges.
  • A stable internet connection.

Step 1: Update Your System

Firstly, we need to update our system’s package list to ensure we have the latest versions of required software. Open your terminal and execute the following command:

sudo apt update

This command updates the list of available packages and their versions, but it does not install or upgrade any packages.

Step 2: Install Required Dependencies

Termite requires several dependencies to be installed on your system. To install these dependencies, execute the following command:

sudo apt install -y g++ libgtk-3-dev gtk-doc-tools gnutls-bin valac intltool libpcre2-dev libglib3.0-cil-dev libgnutls28-dev libgirepository1.0-dev libxml2-utils gperf build-essential

This command installs the necessary dependencies for building Termite from source. Each package serves a specific purpose. For example, g++ is a compiler, libgtk-3-dev is a development package for the GTK+ library, and build-essential contains a list of packages which are considered essential for building Ubuntu packages.

Step 3: Clone and Install the VTE-NG Repository

Termite relies on the vte-ng library, a fork of the original VTE library. To install it, we’ll need to clone the repository and build it from source. Execute the following commands:

git clone
cd vte-ng
sudo make install

These commands download the vte-ng library’s source code, build it, and install it on your system.

Step 4: Clone and Install the Termite Repository

Now that we have installed the necessary dependencies, we can proceed to install Termite. Execute the following commands:

git clone --recursive
cd termite
sudo make install
sudo ldconfig
sudo mkdir -p /lib/terminfo/x
sudo ln -s /usr/local/share/terminfo/x/xterm-termite /lib/terminfo/x/xterm-termite

These commands clone the Termite repository, build the software, and install it on your system. The last command creates a symbolic link for compatibility with other applications.

Step 5: Set Termite as the Default Terminal Emulator

To set Termite as your default terminal emulator, execute the following command:

sudo update-alternatives --config x-terminal-emulator

This command opens a prompt where you can select Termite as your default terminal emulator.


Congratulations! You have successfully installed Termite on your Ubuntu system. Now you can enjoy a lightweight and highly customizable terminal emulator that can significantly improve your productivity.

Remember to keep your system updated and regularly check the Termite GitHub repository for updates and new features. If you encounter any issues during the installation process, don’t hesitate to ask for help in the comments section below. Happy coding!

Can I install Termite on Ubuntu versions earlier than 20.04?

No, Termite requires Ubuntu 20.04 or later for installation.

Can I install Termite on other Linux distributions?

Yes, Termite can be installed on other Linux distributions, but the installation process may vary. It is recommended to consult the Termite documentation or user community for instructions specific to your distribution.

Can I install Termite without using the command line?

No, the installation process for Termite requires the use of the command line. However, there are alternative terminal emulators available with graphical installation methods.

Can I uninstall Termite after installing it?

Yes, you can uninstall Termite by executing the following command in the terminal: sudo make uninstall within the Termite source code directory.

How can I update Termite to the latest version?

To update Termite to the latest version, you can navigate to the Termite repository on GitHub and follow the instructions provided for updating the software.

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