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How to install and set up the BitWarden app on Linux

The Bitwarden app is an open source password manager for Linux, Mac, Windows, and most modern web browsers. It’s completely free to use and offers useful features such as integration with ubikey and many aspects of the desktop.

One of the best reasons to choose Bitwarden over something like LastPass or Dashlane is that all of the features it offers up are free, and there’s no need to charge a subscription. Best of all, they take Linux seriously as a platform by offering a native application to install. Here’s how to get it working on your system.

Ubuntu/Debian

The Bitwarden developers have a DEB package available for download, which means that if you’re using Ubuntu or Debian, or a Linux distribution that uses the Debian packaging format, you’ll be able to install the app quickly.

To get your hands on the latest Bitwarden DEB package, click this link here. It should instantly start the package download. Once the DEB is done downloading, open up a terminal by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T.

Using the CD command, move the command-line session into the “Downloads” folder where the Bitwarden package is located.

cd ~/Download

Inside of the “Downloads” directory, you’ll be able to install the Bitwarden package on the system with the dpkg command.

sudo dpkg -i Bitwarden-*-amd64.deb

Following the installation, use the apt install command to correct any dependency issues that may have arisen during the package install process.

sudo apt install -f

Arch Linux

Bitwarden doesn’t have an official Arch release, but there is an unofficial app on the AUR for those that want it. To start the installation, use the Pacman package manager to install the Base-devel and Git packages.

sudo pacman -S base-devel git

With the packages set up, use the Git tool to grab and download the Trizen AUR helper. With this tool, setting up Bitwarden will be much easier, as you will not need to install each, individual dependency manually.

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

Install Trizen using makepkg.

makepkg -sri

Finally, use the Trizen application to grab the latest release of Bitwarden from the AUR.

trizen -S bitwarden-bin

Fedora/OpenSUSE

There’s an RPM available for the Bitwarden desktop app, which means that Fedora and OpenSUSE users will be able to get it up and running rather quickly.

To start the installation, click this link here to start the download for the Bitwarden RPM file. When the package is done downloading, open up a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard.

Using the CD command, move the command-line session into the “Downloads” directory in your home folder.

cd ~/Downloads

Once in the “Downloads” folder, follow the distribution specific instructions so that Bitwarden can install successfully.

Fedora

On Fedora Linux, the DNF package manager is required to install RPM packages. To install Bitwarden, use the dnf install command below.

sudo dnf install Bitwarden-*-x86_64.rpm

OpenSUSE

Installing RPM package files on OpenSUSE involves using the Zypper package manager. To get the app working on your system, enter the following zypper install command.

sudo zypper install Bitwarden-*-x86_64.rpm

Snap

The developers of the Bitwarden password manager have put their app in the Snap store, so if you’re not able to install DEB or RPM packages but can install and use Snaps, you’re in luck.

Getting the Bitwarden Snap package is easy however, you must be running a Linux distribution that supports Snapd. To get Snapd working on Linux, head over to our tutorial on the subject. We outline how to get it working on nearly every distribution out there. Alternatively, install Ubuntu, as it supports Snaps out of the box.

Once you’ve got Snapd working on your Linux PC, getting the Bitwarden application set up is done with a simple snap install command in the terminal.

sudo snap install bitwarden

AppImage

One way to use the Bitwarden application on Linux if you can’t use Snaps, DEBs or RPMs is by downloading their official AppImage. The benefit of this method of installation is that it’ll run on every Linux distribution, no questions asked.

To start the AppImage installation, click on this link here. It’ll quickly download to your PC. Then, when the AppImage is done downloading, open up a terminal window and use the CD command to move to the “Downloads” directory.

cd ~/Downloads

Use chmod to update the AppImage file’s permissions, so it’s executable on your Linux PC.

sudo chmod +X Bitwarden-*-x86_64.AppImage

Next, make a new AppImages folder using mkdir.

mkdir -p ~/AppImages

Move the Bitwarden file into the “Appimages” directory.

mv Bitwarden-*-x86_64.AppImage  ~/AppImages

You’ll then be able to start the app up for the first time with the command below.

./Bitwarden-*-x86_64.AppImage

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