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How to install Gnome Drawing on Linux

There are a lot of great drawing apps for Linux, but all of them have a heavy focus on artists and are filled with sophisticated features. If you’re not interested in fancy features but want a great drawing app, try Gnome Drawing instead! Here’s how to get it working on your Linux PC.

Ubuntu installation instructions

On Ubuntu Linux, the Gnome Drawing application is effortless to install, as the developers maintain a PPA repository, which works with every single version of Ubuntu, as well as all Ubuntu-based operating systems (Linux Mint, Elementary, etc.).

If you’re using Ubuntu and want to get Gnome Drawing working, open up a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. Then, use the add-apt-repository command below to set up the PPA on your system.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:cartes/drawing

After adding the Gnome Drawing PPA to your Ubuntu Linux PC, it is time to run the update command to refresh Ubuntu’s software sources, so that the new PPA will be accessible to you.

sudo apt update

Following the update command, you may wish to install any pending software patches and updates by running the upgrade command. Keep in mind that this step is optional, and you can skip it if you do not want to install updates.

sudo apt upgrade

As soon as your Ubuntu PC finishes installing all of the pending software upgrades, it is time to install the latest version of Gnome Drawing.

sudo apt install drawing

Debian installation instructions

Though you wouldn’t know it, it is possible to get Gnome Drawing working on Debian Linux. The way to get the app working is by making use of the Ubuntu PPA.

To start the installation process on your Debian PC, launch a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. After that, open your sources.list file in the Nano text editor.

sudo nano -w /etc/apt/sources.list

Using the Down Arrow key on the keyboard, make your way to the bottom of the sources.list file. Then, press the Enter key to create a new line in the file.

After creating a new line in the sources.list file, write out the text below.

## Gnome Drawing Repo

Next, below ## Gnome Drawing Repo, press Enter to create another new line and paste the Ubuntu PPA information into the file.

deb https://ppa.launchpad.net/cartes/drawing/ubuntu bionic main
deb-src https://ppa.launchpad.net/cartes/drawing/ubuntu bionic main

Save the edits to sources.list by pressing Ctrl + O, and exit the editor with Ctrl + X. Then, use the command below to run an update.

sudo apt update

You will notice an error while running the update command. The reason for this error is that the Gnome Drawing PPA is missing the signing key. Run the following command to fix that.

sudo apt-key adv --keyserver hkp://keyserver.ubuntu.com:80 --recv-keys A7D69E90DC319136

Assuming the key recovery is successful, re-run the update command.

sudo apt update

Finally, install Gnome Drawing with:

sudo apt install drawing

Arch Linux installation instructions

Arch Linux has the Gnome Drawing application available for installation. The app is in the AUR and is built with the source code. Still, it’s nice to see in the AUR, as compiling the source code by hand is pretty tedious.

To start the installation, you will need to set up the Git and Base-devel packages.  Without these packages, it will not be possible to interact with the AUR. Using the Pacman command, install the packages.

sudo pacman -S git base-devel

Following the installation of Git and Base-devel, you must install the Trizen AUR helper. Trizen automates the installation of AUR programs. Using this app to set up Gnome Drawing is a good idea, as manually resolving dependencies is tedious and confusing at times. To install Trizen, enter the commands below.

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

cd trizen 

makepkg -sri

With the Trizen app installed on your Arch Linux PC, the hard part is over. From here, you can point the app at Gnome Drawing in the AUR to install it!

trizen -S drawing-git

Fedora Linux/OpenSUSE  installation instructions

Sadly, there currently isn’t an RPM package out there for Gnome Drawing on either Fedora Linux or OpenSUSE Linux. As a result, users of these two operating systems looking to install Gnome Drawing must follow the Snap package or Flatpak installation instructions in this guide.

Snap package installation instructions

Gnome Drawing is available as a Snap package in the Ubuntu Snap Store, so if you’re running a Linux operating system that supports the Snap format, you’ll be able to get this app working faster than ever.

To start the installation of Gnome Drawing via Snap, follow our guide to learn how to set up the Snapd runtime. Then, enter the snap install command below to get the app working.

sudo snap install drawing

Flatpak installation instructions

According to the developers, Flatpak is the preferred way of distributing Gnome Drawing. Their reasoning makes sense, as it is targeted at Gnome, and Flatpak makes getting it working on nearly every Gnome Desktop effortless.

To get Gnome Drawing working on your Linux PC via Flatpak, follow our guide to learn how to get the latest Flatpak runtime set up. Then, enter the commands below to get the app installed.

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

flatpak install flathub com.github.maoschanz.drawing

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