Debian 10 – install and configure i3wm

i3 is a tiling window manager designed for X11, inspired by wmii and written in C. It supports tiling, stacking, and tabbing layouts, which it handles dynamically.

Configuration is achieved via plain text file and extending i3 is possible using its Unix domain socket and JSON based IPC interface from many programming languages.

Step 1: Install Debian 10.

Download Debian 10 .ISO image from official site:

Step 2: Write ISO image to USB drive using program Etcher:

Step 3: Install Debian 10 on your PC.

Don’t install any other programs and desktop environments, uncheck all check boxes in installation menu. You need clear operating system without any other software.

Installation i3wm and other software:

Now you have clear oerating system with command shell.

First authorize in system with root login, change repositories to testing branch in file /etc/apt/sources.list, it is needed to get latest packages:

Upgrade your system:

apt update
apt upgrade

Install sudo and add sudo privilegies to your username:

apt install sudo
usermod -aG sudo username

Now you can logout from user root and authorize with your username login, Install file manager MC and other additional software:

sudo apt install mc vim htop screenfetch

Install X-Window-Server, I3, and other software for desktop environment:

apt install bash-completion lightdm zenity network-manager-gnome viewnior i3 xserver-xorg xbacklight conky nitrogen compton tilix firefox-esr thunar rofi flameshot