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4 best Slack alternatives on Linux

Slack is a chat app for the workplace. It is used to organize teams, discuss projects, and communicate with co-workers. Overall, Slack is an excellent product and has many useful features. However, not everyone on Linux appreciates Slack. So, in this list, we will discuss the 4 best Slack alternatives on Linux.

1. Mattermost

Mattermost is a self-hosted alternative to Slack. It is freemium, open-source, and supports many features included in Slack, such as webhook support, video chat, audio calls, embedded images, private chats, and more. Additionally, Mattermost can import Slack user data, past conversations, and even public channel history.

The Mattermost app is one of many Slack alternatives available for Linux users. Still, it sets itself apart by allowing users to import Slack data, which can ease the pain of switching chat apps.

Notable features

  • Mattermost allows users to self-host to take ownership of their chat data.
  • Mattermost supports 1-on-1 chat as well as group chat, like Slack.
  • The Mattermost client supports markdown formatting.
  • In Mattermose, users can mark individual text channels as favorites for easy access.
  • Mattermost offers an easy Slack data importing tool, which makes switching to it much better than other apps.

Download – Mattermost

Mattermost is available for download on Linux through its official website. However, setting up your own Mattermost chat server can be pretty complicated, so be sure to follow our in-depth guide on how to use and set up Mattermost on Linux!

2. Riot

Riot.im is an open-source collaboration-style chat application similar to Slack. It offers up many features that Slack does like video calling, audio calls, embedded images/video, emoticons, and individual text channels. Much like Mattermost, the app allows users to self-host a chat server. However, unlike Mattermost, self-hosting is optional. Users can create rooms on Matrix.org, without the need for understanding how servers work.

Riot.im is a perfect Slack alternative for those looking for choice. By allowing users to self-host or create rooms on Matrix.org for free, Riot does just that.

Notable features

  • Users of Riot can choose to host their own chat server to take control of their chat data, or, create a free room on Matrix.org, no technical expertise required.
  • Much like Slack, users can create individual chat channels for specific topics.
  • All of Riot’s chat data is end-to-end encrypted, ensuring your private information is in safe hands.
  • Like Slack, Riot supports Bots, and embeddable widgets to accomplish tasks as a group.

Download – Riot.im

Riot.im can easily be downloaded by visiting the developer’s website. However, if you have issues getting the app working on Linux, consider heading over to our guide on Riot.im. It explains in simple terms how to get the chat app working on your Linux operating system of choice.

3. Flock

Flock is a freemium team chat application for Linux, Mac, Windows, and other platforms. It is built with teams in mind and supports various integrations teams find valuable, such as Google Drive, Github, Trello, and others. Like many Slack alternatives, Flock supports video chat, audio calling, embedded images, and other standard features.

The best case for Flock on Linux is that it’s just like Slack, and doesn’t require any hard work or self-hosting to get it up and running for your team. If you’re looking for an alternative to Slack on Linux but uninterested in hosting your own chat server, do yourself a favor and try out Flock.

Notable features

  • Flock has a built-in, sharable to-do list for accomplishing tasks. Additionally, users can convert ongoing discussions inside of Flock to tasks on the to-do list.
  • Flock integrates with many outside services (Google Drive, Github, Trello, etc.), just like Slack does.
  • Flock data is encrypted using TLS 1.2.
  • Flock users can submit polls to the team to get everyone’s input.

Download – Flock

Flock is distributed via the Ubuntu Snap store, ensuring that everyone on Linux has a shot at running the program. If you’re new to Linux and unsure how Snap packages work, we’ve got you covered. Check out our in-depth guide on how to set up the Flock chat app on Linux.

4. Zulip

Zulip is an open-source chat application for Linux, Mac, Windows, and Mobile. It supports a lot of features you’d expect in a Slack alternative, like inline images and videos, a full history search function, support for sharing files, code snippet embedding, and much more.

Zulip has many exciting features that make it a great alternative to Slack, but its best feature is conversation threading. With this, team conversations are much more organized and readable. So, if you like Slack but want to move to an app that has easier to read chats, consider Zulip!

Notable features

  • Links sent in the Zulip chat application will automatically generate a beautiful, inline preview.
  • Threaded conversations allow users of Zulip to always keep up with chat even if they’re not available online to chat in real-time.
  • Zulip integrates with hundreds of outside tools and sources, like Jira, Trac, Nagios, Github, Jenkins, and many others.
  • The full-history search feature of Zulip is “snappy and smart, ” and allows users to quickly and efficiently find specific text, conversations or threads.

Download – Zulip

Currently, the official Zulip website only offers Linux users an AppImage file to use their software. If you’d like to install Zulip on Linux, head over to this page here.

In addition to the AppImage file, users can also download the Zulip application from the Ubuntu Snap Store, or the Flathub Flatpak store. If you’re not a fan of AppImage, the Snap or Flatpak release of Zulip is the way to go.


In this list, we talked about the 4 best Slack alternatives to use on Linux. However, these 4 aren’t the only Slack-like apps out there. What is your favorite alternative to Slack on Linux? Tell us in the comment section below!

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