Love it or hate it, Apple’s macOS has carved out its place in the PC market, even more so after the iPhone. One of the many advantages of using Linux is that you have the freedom to make it look like anything you like. Follow the steps below to install the mac OS theme on the KDE Plasma desktop.
Being a Linux user doesn’t mean you have to hate macOS or Windows. In fact, many people like the look of Windows or macOS, but just don’t want to invest in buying them. The reasons can be many, but we will not discuss them here. Instead, let’s discuss how you can make your KDE Plasma desktop look like MacOS.
1. Top panel
KDE Plasma looks more like Windows by default than Mac. Some other desktop environments give more of a Mac feel with a top panel that houses the time/date, system tray, etc. However, it’s KDE Plasma that can best replicate the MacOS menubar, as far as I’m aware. In the screenshot above, you can see the standard KDE panel at the bottom and a custom panel at the top that looks like the menu bar on a Mac. Before we can change anything, make sure the widgets are unlocked.
- Right-click anywhere on the desktop and select Add Panel > Application Menu Bar. This will add a white bar at the top of the screen. The panel you see in the screenshots is the final product, and unfortunately I’m not willing to undo everything, so…
- Click the hamburger menu icon (three horizontal lines) on the right and drag the Height up or down button to increase or decrease the height of the top panel to your liking.
- When you have the height you want, you can start adding widgets. Right-click anywhere and select add widgets.
- Select the system tray in Widgets and drag it to the right of the top panel to position it. Do the same with the clock widget and add whatever you want. You can use the bottom panel as a guide or the screenshot above if you’re not sure which widgets to put.
- The system tray widget contains all the necessary icons that will appear when needed, just like in Windows. I prefer to add each of the systray icons manually because it gives it more of a Mac look and feel and is also less cluttered.
- In the screenshot above, from right to left, the widgets are: Search, Lock/Logout, User Switcher, Simple Date and Time (you will have to download this one), Bluetooth, Networks, Audio Volume, Device Notifier, Clipboard , KDE Connect, Notifications, Weather Widget. I added Pager to easily switch between different virtual desktops, a trash widget and a Netspeed widget, but you can ignore them.
On the left of the panel, add a Active window control widget (maybe have to download it), next to it add the global menu tool. Unfortunately, I can’t show you how to space them out, but you’ll likely find out how far or how close you like these two on your own.
When you’re done, you might want to remove the bottom panel because you won’t need that. To do this, click on the hamburger menu on the bottom panel, select More settings… > remove panel.
macOS Dock for KDE Plasma
The other very popular component of a Mac desktop is the dock at the bottom that houses all your favorite and currently open applications. The dock is not that difficult to replicate and can even be done in Windows quite flawlessly. Linux has a lot of options like Docky, Plank and my favorite Cairo. You can use whatever you want, but you’ll need Mac themes for any of them before it starts to look like the one in the screenshot above.
I’m using Cairo dock with a Mac theme (credit: Sean Bartender). To install the theme in the Cairo dock, right-click anywhere on the dock and select Cairo > To set up. Select Themes, drag and drop the downloaded file to where it says …or drag and drop a theme pack here: then click To apply.
icons and cursor
There are so many macOS icon packs and cursor themes for Linux that you can download and install and any of them will work fine. You can download the links below if you are having trouble finding them.
Extract the files and place the extracted folders in ~/.local/share/icons/
macOS Themes for KDE Plasma
So far, your desktop should look like the Mac, but the menu bar is still pretty white, which is not what it looks like on the Mac. Not to mention that every application you open should look completely outside of the default KDE theme. To change this, go to system settings > workspace theme > workspace theme and click get new theme. install and To apply Breeze Transparent, Breeze Transparent with Antu icons, or Breeze transparent panel which I’m using because it makes the top panel more transparent than the others. The downside is that the other themes also make some other parts of the UI transparent, while this one doesn’t.
While you’re at it, you can also apply the cursor theme.
Next, go to System Definitions > Application Style and select Breezemitethen go to system settings > icons and select your Mac icon pack.
That’s basically the gist, although there are still some tweaks and modifications you can make to make it even better or just suit your style. Did you know that you can restart your KDE Plasma desktop even after rebooting? Read our tutorial to learn how to do this!