How to install Kate on Ubuntu 20.04 | A Great Text Editor

Kate is a modern text editor built on the KDE Frameworks and Qt, packed with features that will make it easier for you to view and edit all your text files.

Kate lets you to edit and view many files at the same time, both in tabs and split views, and comes with a wide variety of plugins, including an embedded terminal that lets you launch console commands directly from Kate, powerful search and replace plugins, and a preview plugin that can show you what your MD, HTML and even SVG will look like.

Use the project sidebar to navigate your project directory structures and use Kate’s smart tabs to quickly access your recently opened documents. The powerful search and replace tool lets you quickly search inside your entire projects.

It supports highlighting for over 300 languages making it easier to read code in almost all programming languages.

Kate also understands how brackets works and will help you navigate inside complex code blocks hierarchies. The syntax highlighting is extensible via XML files.

It supports UTF-8, UTF-16, ISO-8859-1 and ASCII encoding schemes and can detect a file’s character encoding automatically. Kate can be used as a modal text editor through its vi input mode.

Kate contains many plugins installed by defaults, making it more powerful than any other text editor. Use the integrated terminal emulator to run commands directly from Kate, execute SQL queries with the SQL extension, use GDB to debug your program, build projects with just one click, and much, much more.

Key Features of Kate Text Editor:

  • Encoding support (Unicode and lots of others)
  • Bi-directional text rendering support
  • Line ending support (Windows, Unix, Mac), including auto detection
  • Network transparency (open remote files)
  • Extensible through scripting
  • Bookmarking system (also supported: break points etc.)
  • Scroll bar marks
  • Line modification indicators
  • Line numbers
  • Code folding
  • Syntax Highlighting
  • Search & Replace
  • Scriptable auto indentation
  • Smart comment and uncomment handling
  • Auto completion with argument hints
  • Vi input mode
  • Rectangular block selection mode
  • Backup and Restore
  • Integrated command line
  • Scriptable using JavaScript

This article explains two methods of installing Kate on Ubuntu 20.04.

Choose the installation method that is most appropriate for your environment.

Method 1: Installing Kate as a Snap Package

A snap package is a type of universal Linux package that you can enjoy irrespective of the distro. Its an self-contained software packages that include the binary all dependencies needed to run the application.

All you need is the snap service pre-configured, In the case of Ubuntu 20.04, it comes with snap pre-installed.

If snapd package is not already installed then you can install it by running following command.

$ sudo apt install snapd

Note: Snap packages can be installed from either the command-line or via the Ubuntu Software application.

This is actually the Snap version of the Kate Text Editor application. It can be used on any Linux distribution that has Snap support.

Open your terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and execute the following command to download and install the Kate package on your system.

$ sudo snap install kate --classic

That’s It. Now you can open the Kate application with the help of Activities search bar.

Method 2: Installing Kate from Ubuntu repositories

Step #1

Installing Kate Text Editor from Ubuntu repositories is a relatively easy process and takes only a few minutes to complete.

Open a terminal (CTRL+ALT+T) and execute the below commands to update packages.

$ sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

Note: The user must have sudo privileges to run all these commands.

Step #2

Now execute the following command to install the Kate package.

$ sudo apt install kate

That’s it! You have successfully installed Kate on your Ubuntu machine, and you can start using it.

Starting Kate Text Editor

In the Activities search bar type “Kate” and click on the icon to launch the application.

Kate text editor user interface:

Congratulations! You have successfully installed Kate. You may enjoy using Kate Text editor on Linux now.

How to Uninstall Kate Text Editor from Ubuntu 20.04

For some reason, If you want to uninstall Kate application, use following commands.

Type the following command if you have installed Kate via Snap:

$ sudo snap remove kate

Run the following command if you have installed Kate via apt:

$ sudo apt remove kate


I hope that now you have a good understanding of How to install Kate Text Editor on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa.

If anyone does have any questions about what we covered in this guide then feel free to ask in the comment section below and I will do my best to answer those.

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