Installing Beryl On A CentOS 5.0 Desktop

Version 1.0
Author: Falko Timme

This tutorial shows how you can install and use Beryl on a CentOS 5.0 desktop (the system must have a 3D-capable graphics card). With Beryl, you can make your desktop use beautiful 3D effects like wobbly windows or a desktop cube.

This document comes without warranty of any kind! I want to say that this is not the only way of setting up such a system. There are many ways of achieving this goal but this is the way I take. I do not issue any guarantee that this will work for you!


1 Preliminary Note

I have tried this on my 3-year old HP Pavilion zt3000 notebook which has an ATI Mobility Radeon 9200 graphic card, and it works really good there. I have used the CentOS Gnome desktop. If you use KDE, a few things might be different from this tutorial.


2 Installing Beryl

There's no Beryl package in the official CentOS 5.0 repositories, but the repository has a Beryl package for CentOS 5.0 (in the kbs-CentOS-Testing repository). Therefore we add this repository to our official CentOS repositories. Open a terminal (Applications > Accessories > Terminal) and become root by typing:


Then we run these two commands to add the new repositories to our existing repositories:

cd /etc/yum.repos.d/

Now we must enable the kbs-CentOS-Testing repository. To do this, we open the file kbsingh-CentOS-Extras.repo and change enabled=0 to enabled=1 in the kbs-CentOS-Testing stanza:

gedit kbsingh-CentOS-Extras.repo
# All new packages are now released to the testing repository first
# and only moved into Stable after a period of time
# Note: The testing repository is disabled by default

name=CentOS.Karan.Org-EL$releasever - Stable

name=CentOS.Karan.Org-EL$releasever - Testing

Then we import the GPG key of our new repository:

rpm --import

Now we can install Beryl with a single command:

yum install beryl

This will install Beryl and all needed dependencies on your system.

That's it. We can now start Beryl by going to Applications > System Tools > Beryl Manager. If all goes well, your desktop should now have 3D effects, and you should see the red Beryl gem in the top right corner of your desktop:


3 Make Beryl Start Automatically

Of course, you don't want to start Beryl manually each time you log in to your desktop. Fortunately, there's a way to make it start automatically. Open a terminal (Applications > Accessories > Terminal) and become root by typing:


First, we create the file /usr/bin/

gedit /usr/bin/
sleep 4
exec gnome-session

Then we make it executable:

chmod a+x /usr/bin/

Afterwards, we create the file /usr/share/xsessions/Beryl.desktop:

gedit /usr/share/xsessions/Beryl.desktop
[Desktop Entry]

Then we log out of our current desktop session. On the login screen, go to Session, choose Beryl and click on the Change Session button. Then log in with your username and password. You will then be asked:

Do you wish to make Beryl the default for future sessions?

You can choose between Just For This Session and Make Default. If this is your first try, I recommend to select Just For This Session to see if Beryl really starts automatically. If it works, you can select Make Default at the next login.


4 Customize Beryl Behaviour And Window Themes

If you like to modify Beryl's behaviour and effects, you can go to Applications > System Tools > Beryl Settings Manager. You can then customize Beryl:

To change window decorations and themes, you must start the Emerald Theme Manager by going to System > Preferences > More Preferences > Emerald Theme Manager:


Share this page:

2 Comment(s)