How to Install balenaEtcher on Debian 12, 11 or 10

balenaEtcher is a widely used, user-friendly, and efficient tool for creating bootable USB drives and SD cards. Its popularity stems from its ease of use, reliability, and robust features that simplify creating bootable media. Compared to other tools like Ventoy and Rufus, balenaEtcher offers a clean and intuitive interface, cross-platform support, and constant updates thanks to its open-source nature.

Key features of balenaEtcher include:

  • Cross-platform support for Windows, macOS, and Linux: “balenaEtcher” supports multiple platforms, making it accessible to a wider range of users.
  • User-friendly interface with a simple drag-and-drop system: “balenaEtcher’s” interface is easy to use, with a simple drag-and-drop system for creating bootable media.
  • Supports a wide range of file systems, including ISO, IMG, and DMG: balenaEtcher supports several file systems, making it easy to use with different operating systems.
  • Open-source and constantly updated for the latest features and bug fixes: balenaEtcher is open-source, ensuring that it is continually being improved and updated for the best possible user experience.
  • Verifies the data written to the USB drive or SD card for reliability: balenaEtcher verifies the data written to the media to ensure the process is completed correctly.
  • Ability to flash multiple drives simultaneously for increased efficiency: balenaEtcher allows users to flash multiple drives simultaneously, increasing efficiency and reducing the time spent creating bootable media.

This guide will walk you through installing balenaEtcher on Debian 11 (Bullseye) or Debian 10 (Buster). You will download the official bash script and use the APT package manager to install your system’s latest stable version of balenaEtcher. We will also provide detailed information on each step and tips to ensure a smooth installation.

Step 1: Update Debian

Before installing balenaEtcher, ensure that your Debian system is up-to-date. To update your system, open the terminal and execute the following command:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

This command will update the package list and install the latest updates to ensure your system has the most up-to-date software.

Step 2: Install Dependencies

Before installing balenaEtcher, ensure the following dependencies are installed on your Debian system. Execute the following command in the terminal to install the required dependencies:

sudo apt install curl apt-transport-https

This command will install curl and apt-transport-https, which are required to download and install balenaEtcher.

Step 3: Import the balenaEtcher Repository

The next step is to import the official balenaEtcher repository. To do so, execute the following command in the terminal:

curl -1sLf '' | sudo -E bash

By executing the command, you engage the bash command to initiate the script and import the official balenaEtcher repository. If the package “apt-transport-https” is missing, the command will automatically attempt to install it. Upon successful completion, you will be given instructions at the end of the terminal output.


Step 4: Install balenaEtcher

After successfully importing the repository, you can install balenaEtcher on your Debian system. To install the latest stable version of balenaEtcher, execute the following command in the terminal:

sudo apt update

To begin the installation process of balenaEtcher on your system, execute the following command in the terminal:

sudo apt install balena-etcher

It’s important to remember that the package “balena-etcher-electron” is outdated and may not work as expected. Moreover, it is expected to be phased out soon, so it is recommended to either follow the provided command or uninstall the package and install “balena-etcher” to ensure the best user experience.

Step 5: Launch balenaEtcher

With the successful installation of balenaEtcher, you can now launch the application on your desktop. To do so, follow the path in your system’s menu or search for “balenaEtcher” in your application search bar and click the icon to open the program.

Activities > Show Applications > balenaEtcher.


Congratulations on successfully installing balenaEtcher on your Debian system! Now that you have this powerful and user-friendly tool, you can easily create bootable USB drives.

Whether you want to create a backup of your system, install a new operating system, or troubleshoot problems on your computer, balenaEtcher can help you get the job done quickly and efficiently. To get the most out of balenaEtcher, remember a few tips.

First, select the correct image file for the operating system or software you want to install. Once you have selected the image file, ensure you have chosen the target drive correctly before clicking the Flash button. It’s crucial to double-check the drive selection to avoid writing to the wrong purpose and risking data loss.

In addition to these tips, it’s also a good idea to format your drive to a supported file system and ensure it has enough storage capacity to accommodate the image file. Doing so can ensure a smooth process and that the bootable media works correctly.

Following these tips and using balenaEtcher, you can quickly and easily create bootable media. So go ahead and use this tool to create backups, install new operating systems, and troubleshoot problems on your Debian system with confidence!

Example of balenaEtcher UI:

Additional Commands & Tips

Remove (Uninstall) balenaEtcher

A straightforward method to uninstall balenaEtcher from your Debian system is to execute the following command in the terminal. This will remove the balena-etcher package and any associated components from your system.

sudo apt remove balena-etcher --purge

If you also want to remove the repository from your system, you can run the following command:

sudo rm /etc/apt/sources.list.d/balena-etcher.list


Installing balenaEtcher on Debian is a straightforward process that can be accomplished by following the steps outlined in this guide. With balenaEtcher installed on your system, you’ll easily create bootable USB drives and SD cards, enabling you to create backups, install new operating systems, and troubleshoot issues on your computer.

It’s important to carefully follow the steps provided to avoid errors during the installation process. Doing so lets you easily install balenaEtcher and start using it to create bootable media.

Additional Resources and Relevant Links

Below is a list of additional resources and links to help you better understand and utilize BalenaEtcher on Debian. These resources include official documentation, community forums, and alternative tools to help you get the most out of your BalenaEtcher experience.

  1. BalenaEtcher Official Website: The official website for BalenaEtcher provides a wealth of information, including the latest releases, documentation, and frequently asked questions.
  2. BalenaEtcher GitHub Repository: The official GitHub repository for BalenaEtcher contains the source code, issue tracking, and release notes.
  3. Debian Wiki: The Debian Wiki provides helpful information on various Debian-related topics, including installing and configuring software packages.
  4. Debian User Forums: The Debian user forums are valuable for users to discuss issues, ask questions, and share their experiences with Debian and its software packages.
  5. Alternative Flashing Tools: Besides BalenaEtcher, alternative tools exist for creating bootable USB drives on Debian. Some popular options include:

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can balenaEtcher be used on other Linux distributions besides Debian?

A: Yes, balenaEtcher is a cross-platform tool that can be used on multiple Linux distributions.

Q: Why should you use balenaEtcher over other alternatives on Debian?

A: balenaEtcher is widely considered one of the most user-friendly and practical tools for creating bootable USB drives on Debian. Its simple interface lets users create bootable drives in minutes without navigating complex options. Additionally, the application is actively maintained and supported, ensuring that it works well with the latest version of Debian and provides the latest features and bug fixes.

Q: Is balenaEtcher free on Debian?

A: Yes, balenaEtcher is free and open-source software, making it an accessible option for all users on Debian.

Q: What are the main benefits of balenaEtcher over other similar tools on Debian?

A: Compared to similar tools, balenaEtcher has a more straightforward and intuitive interface, making it easier for new users. Additionally, balenaEtcher has better support for modern distributions of Linux, including Debian, and provides regular updates to ensure compatibility and bug fixes.

Q: How actively supported is the Debian version of balenaEtcher?

A: balenaEtcher is an actively maintained and supported application, and the Debian version is no exception. The development team regularly releases updates to ensure compatibility with the latest version of Debian and provides bug fixes and new features. Users can also expect to receive prompt support and troubleshooting assistance if needed.

Q: What image formats does balenaEtcher support on Debian?

A: BalenaEtcher on Debian supports a variety of image formats, including ISO, IMG, DMG, BIN, ETCH, and many more, allowing you to create bootable drives with a variety of operating systems and software distributions.

Q: Does balenaEtcher support multiple USB drives flashing simultaneously on Debian?

A: Yes, balenaEtcher allows you to flash multiple USB drives simultaneously on Debian, which increases efficiency and reduces the time spent creating bootable media.

Q: What are the system requirements to install balenaEtcher on Debian?

A: balenaEtcher is a lightweight application that can run on any modern Debian system. The system requirements for balenaEtcher are minimal and include a 64-bit processor, 1 GB of RAM, and 500 MB of storage space.

Q: How can I update balenaEtcher on Debian?

A: You can update balenaEtcher on Debian by running the following commands in your terminal “sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade.”
This will check for available updates for balenaEtcher and other installed packages on your system and upgrade them to the latest version.

Q: Can I create bootable media for non-Linux operating systems using balenaEtcher on Debian?

A: Yes, balenaEtcher on Debian supports various image formats, including ISO, IMG, DMG, BIN, ETCH, and more, allowing you to create bootable drives for multiple operating systems and software distributions.

Q: Is balenaEtcher safe to use on Debian?

A: Yes, balenaEtcher is a safe and reliable tool for creating bootable USB drives and SD cards on Debian. The application is open-source and widely used, ensuring it has been thoroughly tested and reviewed for security and reliability. However, as with any software, it’s essential to download and install balenaEtcher from trusted sources to avoid security risks.

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