The Boston icon theme is a beautiful, flat mac-like icon theme for Linux. It focuses on basic shapes, and a reduced color palette to convey a minimalist look. In this guide, we’ll go over how to set it up on Linux.
Downloading Boston icons
In the “Files” area of the Boston Gnome-look.org page, click on the blue icon in the “DL” column. Then, click on the download button that appears in the pop-up window to grab the latest release of the Boston icon theme.
The Boston icon theme is also available on GitHub if the Gnome-look release isn’t your thing. However, keep in mind that this guide focuses on the Gnome-look release of Boston and not the GitHub one.
Extracting Boston icons
The Boston icon theme is distributed as a TarXZ archive. The contents of the TarXZ file must be extracted before the installation of Boston can happen. To extract the TarXZ archive, open up a terminal window. To open up a terminal window, press Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. Then, use the tar xvf command to extract the contents of
cd ~/Downloads tar xvf Boston-Icons-0.7.tar.xz
When the archive is decompressed, a new directory with the name of “Boston” will be created in your “Downloads” directory. You can take a look at the contents of this directory by making use of the ls command.
Installing Boston icons
Icon themes on Linux can be installed in two different methods. The first method of installing an icon theme on Linux is called single-user mode. Single-user mode means that the icon theme is installed in the user’s home directory, and only that user has access to it, rather than everyone on the system. The second method for installing icon themes on Linux is System-wide mode. System-wide allows the icon theme to be available to the entire Linux operating system, rather than just one user.
Those who share a computer should consider installing icons in System-wide mode, while those who do not share computers should consider single-wide. In the tutorial for setting up the Boston icon theme, we will cover both installation methods.
To install the Boston icon theme as a single-user, start by opening up a terminal window. Then, use the mkdir command to create the
~/.icons directory. This folder is where all icon files are stored for single-user mode.
mkdir -p ~/.icons
After creating the
~/.icons folder, move the terminal session into the ~/Downloads directory using the CD command.
Inside of the
~/Downloads folder, make use of the mv command to place the Boston icon theme folder into the
~/.icon directory in your home folder.
mv Boston/ ~/.icons
Boston/ folder is in the
~/.icons directory, the Boston icon theme is installed on your Linux PC in single-user mode. To verify that the installation was successful, you can run the ls command.
To install the Boston icon theme in system-wide mode, start out by opening up a terminal window. Then, once the terminal window is open, use the CD command to move the terminal session to the
~/Downloads directory where the Boston icon theme folder is.
Once inside of the
~/Downloads directory, you’ll need to elevate the terminal session from a regular user account to the root user. The reason? Installing icon themes in system-wide mode needs superuser privileges.
To gain root access in the terminal, make use of the sudo -s command.
After gaining root access in the terminal session, make use of the mv command to move the
Boston/ icon theme folder from the
~/Downloads directory to the
/usr/share/icons/ folder in the root filesystem.
mv Boston/ /usr/share/icons/
To verify that the installation went well, run the ls command on the
ls /usr/share/icons/ | grep Boston
Enabling Boston icons
The Boston icon theme is installed on your Linux PC. However, just installing it will not make it the default icons on your system. You must change the default icon theme on your Linux desktop to the Boston icon theme.
To change the default icon theme to Boston, start by opening up “System Settings”. Then, once the “System Settings” window is open, look for “Appearance” or “Icons,” and change the default icon theme to the newly installed Boston icon theme.
Having trouble setting up the Boston icon theme on your Linux PC? Check out the links below to learn how to switch the default icon theme.