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How to install the GitHub Atom code editor on Linux

The GitHub Atom code editor is a great code editing tool for Linux, Mac, and Windows. GitHub develops it; it is open source and has a whole host of exciting features for programmers.

If you’re excited to try out the Atom code editor on your Linux PC but are unsure how to go about installing it, we can help. Here’s how to get the GitHub Atom code editor working on Linux!

Ubuntu/Debian instructions

On the Atom code page, you won’t see any references to any package links for Ubuntu or Debian. The lack of download links for Linux distributions is understandable, given that Atom is an open code project targeted at developers (all of which know how to compile program code.)

If you’re a developer that would prefer to download and install on Ubuntu or Debian rather than dealing with the source code, you’ll be happy to know that there’s an Atom DEB package available for download on project’s release page.

Grab the DEB package here from the release page. Alternatively, use the wget command below to download it directly to your “Downloads” directory.

wget https://github.com/atom/atom/releases/download/v1.35.1/atom-amd64.deb -P ~/Downloads

Now that the Atom DEB package is done downloading onto your Ubuntu or Debian Linux PC, the installation can begin. To start, use the CD command to move the terminal session from the home directory (~/) into the “Downloads” folder.

cd ~/Downloads

Start the package installation by using the dpkg command.

sudo dpkg -i atom-amd64.deb

After running the dpkg command, you’ll see some errors appear. Do not worry! These errors do not mean your Ubuntu or Debian PC is experiencing a system error. The errors on-screen indicate that some dependencies failed to install during Atom’s installation. They are easily corrected using the apt install command.

sudo apt install -f

Running the above command will automatically install and correct any dependencies that the Atom needs to run correctly on Ubuntu or Debian. When the apt install command is done, the program is ready to use!

Arch Linux instructions

Atom is available to Arch Linux through the Arch Linux User Repository. To interact with the AUR, you’ll need to install the Base-devel and Git packages using the following Pacman command.

sudo pacman -S base-devel git

Assuming Base-devel and Git is successfully set up on your Arch Linux PC, we can move on to installing the Atom app via the AUR.

Usually, when dealing with AUR packages, it’s best to pull the source code down and build each of the items by hand. Unfortunately, Atom has a whole lot of dependencies and building every one of them though rewarding will take a whole lot of time. So instead, we will install the Trizen AUR helper to make things much more manageable.

To get Trizen, pull the code with git clone.

git clone https://github.com/trizen/trizen

Move the terminal into the Trizen code folder with CD and install it using makepkg.

cd trizen

makepkg -sri

When the Trizen AUR helper is done setting itself up, use it to pull down and install the latest Atom code package.

trizen -S atom-editor-git

Fedora/OpenSUSE instructions

Like Ubuntu and Debian, Fedora and OpenSUSE also have a downloadable package available hidden away on the Atom Release page. To get it on your Fedora or SUSE PC, click here and download “atom.x86_64.rpm.” Alternatively, use the wget command in a terminal window.

wget https://github.com/atom/atom/releases/download/v1.35.1/atom.x86_64.rpm -P ~/Downloads

Once the RPM package is done downloading, the installation process for Fedora and OpenSUSE is ready to start. The first thing you’ll need to do is use the CD command to move the command-line session from the home directory (~) to “Downloads.”

cd ~/Downloads

Now that the terminal has moved into the “Downloads” folder, it’s possible to install the RPM file on your system. Follow the instructions below that match your OS.

Fedora Linux

sudo dnf install atom.x86_64.rpm -y

OpenSUSE

sudo zypper install atom.x86_64.rpm

Snap instructions

Atom is on the Snap store! This means if you’re using a Linux operating system that has Snap package support, you’ll be able to quickly and easily grab the latest release of the Atom code editor with little effort.

To start the installation, open up a terminal window. Then, head over to our guide on how to set up Snapd on your system so that it’s possible to run Snaps on your Linux OS.

Once you’ve configured Snapd on your Linux PC, use the snap install command to grab the latest release of the Atom code editor.

sudo snap install atom

Flapak instructions

More and more mainstream applications are making their way to the Flathub app store in the form of Flatpak packages. The Atom code editor is no different and has been there for quite a while.

If you’re a fan of Flatpaks and want to use the Flatpak release of the Atom code editor, head over to our guide to learn how to set up the Flatpak runtime on your system. Then, use the commands below to install Atom.

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

sudo flatpak install flathub io.atom.Atom -y

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