1. Home
  2. Linux

How to turn your email into an instant messenger on Linux

Delta Chat is a fantastic application that allows you to turn your existing email account into a chat application. You can message anyone in your existing email contacts as if they were sending messages over Telegram or Discord, or something similar. 

In this guide, we’ll show you how to set up Delta Chat and use it too. To get started, ensure that you have an existing email account and know the login information.

Installing Delta Chat on Linux

Before we can go over how to use Delta Chat on your Linux PC, we need to demonstrate how to install it. The Delta Chat application is well supported on Linux, and you’ll be able to run it if you use Ubuntu, Debian, Arch Linux, or Flatpak.

To get started with the installation of Delta Chat on your Linux PC, open up a terminal window on the Linux desktop. Once the terminal window is open and ready to use, follow the command-line installation instructions outlined below that corresponds with your Linux operating system.


Delta Chat has a DEB package available for installation. If you’re interested in using Delta Chat on Ubuntu, this is how to get it set up. First, use the wget downloader command to grab the latest release of the app for your system.

wget https://download.delta.chat/desktop/v1.13.1/deltachat-desktop_1.13.1_amd64.deb

After downloading the DEB package to your Ubuntu system, use the Apt command to install it. The installation will be quick and should resolve any dependency issues automatically. However, if you have problems with the installation, follow this guide.

sudo apt install ./deltachat-desktop_1.13.1_amd64.deb


There’s a DEB package available for Delta Chat, so getting the app working on Debian is very easy. To start the installation, make use of the wget downloader tool to grab the latest DEB package.

wget https://download.delta.chat/desktop/v1.13.1/deltachat-desktop_1.13.1_amd64.deb

After grabbing the latest DEB package file from the internet, the installation can begin. Using the dpkg command, get the newest release of Delta Chat set up. Be warned that dependency errors may occur during installation. To fix it, click here.

sudo dpkg -i deltachat-desktop_1.13.1_amd64.deb

Arch Linux

There’s an AUR package of Delta Chat available for Arch Linux users. To start the installation, open up a terminal window and use the Pacman command to load up the “git” and “base-devel” packages onto the system.

sudo pacman -S git base-devel

Following the installation of the Git and Base-devel packages on your Arch system, you must install the Trizen AUR helper with the following commands. This program will automate the installation of Delta Chat, a process that would otherwise be a lot more tedious. 

git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/trizen.git

cd trizen

makepkg -sri

Once Trizen is set up,  you can get the Delta Chat application up and running on your Arch system with the trizen -S command.

trizen -S deltachat-desktop


To use Delta Chat, you must have the Flatpak runtime configured on your system. To do that, follow this guide on the subject. After configuring Flatpak, install Delta Chat with the commands below.

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

flatpak install flathub chat.delta.desktop

Setting up Delta Chat 

To set up Delta Chat, follow the step-by-step instructions below.

Step 1: Select the “Log in to your server” button. This button will allow you to log into your email account. Do not worry! You don’t actually have to have your email server.

Step 2: Enter your email address as well as the password for your account in the appropriate text boxes.

Please note that you will need to take extra steps to ensure Delta Chat works if you are using Gmail. You’ll likely need to create an app-specific password or enable logins on less secure apps. 

Step 3: After entering your user account information, you should be able to log into Delta Chat with your existing email account. 

Once you’ve logged into Delta Chat, it’ll be ready to use.

Using Delta Chat

Using Delta Chat is a lot like every other chat app out there, and the interface indicates that. To send a message to anyone, do the following. First, find the 3-dot menu in the top-right corner and click on it with the mouse.

After clicking on the menu with the mouse, look for the “New Chat” button, and click on it. Once you’ve selected the “New Chat” button, a pop-up menu will appear. In this menu, write out the email address of the person you wish to talk to, to create the new window.

Once you’ve created the new window, type out a message in the text box, and click send. Delta Chat will then deliver the message as an email, but it will look like a messenger message to you.

You’ll then be able to talk with the person you’ve sent your message to without them ever needing to download the app. Brilliant!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.