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How to Install GNOME 40 on Debian 11 Bullseye

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in this quick guide, we learn How to Install GNOME 40 on Debian 11 Bullseye, If you’d like to use the latest version of the Gnome Shell desktop on Debian 11, you can, thanks to the “Debian Experimental” software repository. In this guide, we’ll walk you through all the steps to try out this new desktop.

GNOME Shell 40

GNOME Shell 40 Released on 24 March 2021, this version came as a game-changer for the Gnome world. A new concept of horizontal virtual desktop navigation added more fluids to navigate. The panel at the bottom as a dock looks very elegant.

What’s New in GNOME 41 ! Coming Soon,,,

How to Install GNOME 40.1 Stable Update on Ubuntu

Install GNOME 40 on Debian 11 Bullseye

Due to the upcoming release year of a stable Debian version, package maintainers can only upload their programs to the experimental repository, but once Debian 11 is released the Unstable and Testing repositories start receiving packages again.

First, open a terminal and then /etc/apt/sources.list in an editor:

sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list

and then add the following line to the sources.list configuration file:

deb experimental main

This will enable the experimental repository. Use Ctrl+X and Y to save the updated file.

Next run:

sudo apt update

to update the apt repositories and finally run:

 sudo apt -t experimental install gnome-shell gnome-backgrounds gnome-applets gnome-control-center mutter gjs

to install GNOME 40 from the experimental repository.

Gnome 40 packages will finish up installing. When the process is complete, you’ll have to install the “gnome-session” package. This package is required to log in.

sudo apt -t experimental install gnome-session

Now reboot your computer. You should be greeted by your new GNOME 40 desktop on your Debian 11 Bullseyes system after the reboot.


  1. When I try these steps on Debian 11, fresh install yesterday, & all updates applied, I get the following:

    The following packages have unmet dependencies:
    gnome-applets : Depends: gnome-panel (>= 3.10) but it is not going to be installed
    Depends: libgnome-panel0 (>= 3.41.1) but it is not going to be installed
    Depends: libtracker-sparql-3.0-0 (>= 3.1.1) but it is not installable
    Recommends: gnome-system-monitor but it is not going to be installed
    libgweather-3-16 : Breaks: gnome-shell (< 3.38.4-2~) but 3.38.4-1 is to be installed E: Unable to correct problems, you have held broken packages.

    • Hey Russ.

      I had the same problem. I had to use unstable repository to get around it. So do not use experimental repository but use unstable.

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