How to Install Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux

This guide will demonstrate how to install Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux through the command-line terminal, offering two approaches: using the AUR (Arch User Repository) or directly downloading and installing from the tarball.

Tor Browser not only enhances online privacy but also embodies a commitment to protecting internet freedom. This specialized browser, designed for privacy-focused users, keeps your online activities confidential. Amidst widespread digital surveillance, the Tor Browser serves as a beacon of privacy with its array of compelling features.

  • Complex Onion Routing: At the heart of Tor’s technology is its onion routing. This involves routing internet traffic through a global network of servers, each layer encrypting the data before passing it to the next node. This layered approach ensures that the origin and destination of the data remain obscured, significantly enhancing anonymity.
  • NoScript Integration: By default, Tor Browser includes the NoScript extension. This tool allows you to selectively enable or disable script execution on sites you visit, providing an additional layer of protection against malicious scripts.
  • Isolation of Website Requests: Each website you visit through Tor is isolated from others, meaning that cookies, cache, and browsing history are kept separate. This reduces the risk of cross-site scripting and other forms of attack that exploit browsing data.
  • HTTPS Everywhere: Tor Browser includes HTTPS Everywhere, an extension that encrypts your communications with many major websites, making your browsing more secure against surveillance and account hijacking.
  • Bridge Relays: For users in countries where Tor is blocked, the browser offers the option to use bridge relays. These are Tor relays that are not listed in the public Tor directory, making them harder for governments to block.
  • Fingerprinting Resistance: Tor Browser is specifically designed to make all users look the same, making it more difficult for you to be fingerprinted based on your browser and device information.

Having outlined some of these key features and benefits of using Tor Browser, let’s delve into the core of this guide: installing Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux.

Install Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux Using Yay AUR Helper

Update Manjaro Before Installing Tor Browser

Before installing Tor Browser, updating your Manjaro Linux system is crucial for maintaining system stability and security. Run the following command to update:

sudo pacman -Syu

Completing this update ensures a robust foundation for the Tor Browser installation.

Install Yay AUR Helper (If Not Already Installed)

The Yay AUR helper is instrumental in installing Tor Browser. Before proceeding, verify that GIT is installed on your system, as it’s necessary for cloning the Yay repository. Install GIT and the essential development tools with this command:

sudo pacman -S --needed --noconfirm base-devel git

This command efficiently installs the required packages without additional confirmation prompts.

Clone the Yay Repository

Start by cloning the Yay repository. This process involves creating a local copy on your system. Execute the cloning with:

git clone

Cloning is a vital step for building and installing Yay from the source.

Relocate the Yay Repository

After cloning, move the Yay repository to the /opt/ directory. This directory is commonly used for non-standard software. Relocate the yay-git directory with:

sudo mv yay-git /opt/

This step keeps your system organized and adheres to the Linux filesystem hierarchy.

Set Proper User Permissions for Yay-Git

Next, adjust the permissions of the Yay-git directory. This action ensures security and functionality. Start by changing the directory’s ownership to the current user to avoid permission issues. Run these commands:

Change ownership to the current user:

sudo chown -R $USER:$USER /opt/yay-git

Then, navigate to the Yay-git directory:

cd /opt/yay-git

Build the Yay Package

Proceed to build and install Yay using the makepkg command:

makepkg -si

The duration of this process varies based on your system’s capabilities. Once complete, Yay is ready to facilitate the installation of Tor Browser.

Install Tor Browser via Yay Command

With Yay installed, you can now install Tor Browser. Use this command:

yay -S tor-browser-bin --noconfirm

Alternatively, remove --noconfirm to engage in manual installation queries, allowing you to review default options.

Install Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux Using Tor Browser Tarball

Step 1: Download Tor Browser Archive

To ensure you’re using the latest Tor Browser version, download it directly from the Tor Project’s official website. This method guarantees access to the newest features and security enhancements. While Tor Browser typically updates itself, manually downloading the latest version is recommended for major updates.

Desktop users typically download the Tor Browser .tar.xz file directly from the website. By default, this file should be in the ~/Downloads directory, unless you have specified a different location for your downloads.

Fetching the Browser Archive via Command Line

For command-line downloading, use the wget command. The Tor Browser versions are available as .tar.xz files. Here’s an example command:


Replace {version} with the specific version number. Check the Tor Project’s official download page to identify the latest version.

If you download the browser through the website, navigate to your downloads directory with:

cd ~/Downloads

Step 2: Unpacking the Tor Browser Archive

Once downloaded, extract the archive using the tar command:

tar -xvJf tor-browser-linux64-{version}_ALL.tar.xz

Ensure to replace {version} with your downloaded version number.

Step 3: Transferring the Browser Directory

For organization, it’s best to move standalone applications like Tor Browser to a specific directory. On Manjaro Linux, /usr/local/share is typically used for locally installed standalone applications, but for Manjaro, a suitable alternative is the ~/Applications directory, if it exists, or creating a similar directory in your home folder.

Move the Tor Browser directory using:

mkdir -p ~/Applications && sudo mv tor-browser ~/Applications/

This command creates a directory if it doesn’t exist and moves Tor Browser to it.

Step 4: Accessing the New Directory

After moving Tor Browser, navigate to its new location:

./start-tor-browser.desktop --register-app

This step takes you to the Tor Browser’s directory under ~/Applications.

Step 5: Registering the Browser as a Desktop Application

In the new directory, register Tor Browser as a desktop application with:

./start-tor-browser.desktop --register-app

This command launches Tor Browser and registers it as a desktop application. A confirmation message will show, indicating successful registration:

Tor Browser has been registered as a desktop app for this user in ~/.local/share/applications/

This confirmation indicates that you have now set up Tor Browser as a desktop application for your user account.

Launch Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux

Open Tor Browser via Command Line

After successfully installing Tor Browser on your Manjaro Linux system, launching it via the command line is a swift and efficient method, especially favored by users who prefer keyboard-driven interactions.

To initiate Tor Browser, input the following command in your terminal:


Executing this command immediately opens Tor Browser, providing quick access to secure and private web browsing.

Launch Tor Browser from the Desktop Environment

For users who are more comfortable with a graphical user interface, Tor Browser is easily accessible from the application menu of your desktop environment. The process to locate and launch Tor Browser varies slightly depending on the desktop environment you are using:

For KDE and Xfce Users

  • Navigate to the Taskbar.
  • Select the ‘Internet’ category.
  • Click on Tor Browser.

In KDE and Xfce environments, Tor Browser is generally grouped under the ‘Internet’ category. This categorization aligns with its primary function as a web browser, making it straightforward to locate.

For GNOME Users

  • Click on Activities.
  • Choose Show Applications.
  • Search for Tor Browser.

In GNOME, Tor Browser appears alphabetically among your installed applications. This arrangement simplifies the process of finding and launching the browser in a GNOME-based environment.

Tor Browser icon displayed on Manjaro Linux taskbar
Tor Browser ready for use on Manjaro Linux taskbar

Launch Options and Configuration for Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux

Upon first launching Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux, you encounter critical configuration choices that establish the foundation for your browsing experience.

Network Configuration and Connection Settings

  • Connect or Configure Choice: Upon opening Tor Browser, you’ll encounter a choice: to connect directly to the Tor network or to configure your connection settings. This is a pivotal step, particularly for users in regions where Tor might be blocked or restricted.
    • Direct Connection: If you’re in an area without Tor censorship, select ‘Connect’ to immediately access the Tor network. This is the straightforward option for most users, ensuring a hassle-free start.
    • Connection Configuration: For users in countries with restrictions on Tor usage, or if you’re behind a proxy, the ‘Configure’ option is essential. It allows you to set up bridges or proxies, crucial tools for circumventing censorship.

Privacy and Security Adjustments

  • Tor Network Settings: After choosing your connection type, delve into the Tor Network Settings. Here, you can specify particular bridges or local proxies, if necessary. Bridges are alternative entry points to the Tor network that are not publicly listed, making it harder for censors to block them.
  • Security Level Preferences: Tor Browser offers a security slider that you can adjust based on your browsing needs and security concerns. The slider ranges from Standard to Safest, with each level incrementally reducing browser functionalities to minimize potential security threats. This setting is easily accessible and can be modified anytime to suit different browsing scenarios.
  • NoScript and Privacy Settings: By default, Tor Browser includes the NoScript extension, which blocks JavaScript on all sites unless you whitelist them. This feature is vital for protection against malicious scripts but may hinder the functionality of some websites. Take some time to understand and adjust these settings to balance between usability and security.

Advanced Configuration for Experienced Users

  • Customizing the Torrc File: For advanced users, Tor Browser allows modifications to the ‘torrc’ file, the Tor configuration file. This file can be used to fine-tune your Tor experience, such as specifying exit nodes or adjusting bandwidth settings. However, modifying the torrc file requires a good understanding of the Tor network and should be approached with caution.
  • Exploring About:Config: Similar to Firefox, Tor Browser has an about:config page where you can tweak advanced browser settings. This area is for experienced users who wish to customize their browsing experience further. Caution is advised, as changes here can affect both the performance and security of the browser.
Initial Tor Browser screen with connect or configure options on Manjaro Linux
Choosing between connect or configure on Tor Browser’s initial screen

First-Time Tips for Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux

Now that you have successfully installed Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux, let’s dive into some detailed tips to get the most out of your initial experience:

First-Time Launch Tor Browser Options and Configuration

  • Initial Network Configuration: When you first launch Tor Browser, you’ll encounter a configuration window. This is where you can specify if you need to connect to Tor via a proxy or if Tor is censored in your region. Most users can select ‘Connect’ directly, but the ‘Configure’ option is crucial for users in high-censorship countries.
  • Adjusting Privacy and Security Settings: Explore the privacy and security settings available in the Tor Browser. Familiarize yourself with options like blocking third-party cookies, choosing your default search engine, and understanding the implications of various privacy levels.
  • Exploring Tor’s Advanced Settings: For advanced users, Tor Browser offers additional configuration options. This includes changing the Tor circuit, customizing the NoScript extension settings, and more. However, it’s important to proceed with caution, as incorrect settings can compromise your security and privacy.

General Tor Browser Tips for New Users

  • Understanding the Tor Network’s Speed: Tor Browser’s unique routing mechanism, which provides anonymity, can affect browsing speed. This is due to the layered encryption and rerouting of your traffic through multiple relays worldwide. Patience is key when using Tor, as the privacy benefits often outweigh the slight delay in loading times.
  • Prioritizing Secure Connections: Security should be your top priority. Use HTTPS-secured websites to protect your data. Tor Browser’s inclusion of the HTTPS Everywhere extension automatically switches thousands of sites from HTTP to HTTPS, safeguarding your browsing. This is crucial for preventing eavesdropping and man-in-the-middle attacks.
  • Download Caution: While Tor anonymizes your browsing sessions, files you download can contain metadata revealing your identity. Always ensure you trust the source and be aware of the type of files you download. This is particularly important when handling documents or media files that may contain personal information.
  • Minimal Browser Customization: Personalizing your browser through extensions or settings tweaks can make you more identifiable online. The Tor Browser is designed to look the same for all users, a concept known as browser fingerprinting resistance. Staying with the default setup is advised to maintain this level of anonymity.

Customization Tips for Tor Browser

  • Navigating Security Levels: The Tor Browser’s security settings are a crucial aspect of your browsing experience. The Standard setting is the default and allows most websites to function normally. Safer disables JavaScript on non-HTTPS sites, and some fonts and symbols. Safest mode further disables JavaScript on all sites, among other restrictions. This security slider is instrumental in balancing functionality and privacy.
  • Efficient Bookmark Management: Managing bookmarks effectively can enhance your browsing experience. Bookmarking your frequently visited sites not only saves time but also avoids the need to repeatedly search for them, which can generate additional traffic through the Tor network.
  • Mastering Keyboard Shortcuts: Keyboard shortcuts are a game-changer for efficient browsing. Learning and using these shortcuts can significantly speed up your navigation within Tor Browser. They are especially useful when managing multiple tabs or quickly accessing specific features.

Additional Tips Tor Browser

  • Exploring Tor Circuits: Tor Browser’s ability to show the relay path (circuit) for your connection to each website is both informative and reassuring. By understanding the route your data takes, you gain a better appreciation of the anonymity Tor provides.
  • Utilizing the New Identity Feature: This powerful feature is ideal for situations where you want to start a completely fresh browsing session, free from any past activity traces. It’s particularly useful when switching between different sensitive tasks or websites.
  • Regularly Updating Tor Browser: Staying updated with the latest version of Tor Browser is vital for security and access to new features. Tor Browser includes an update mechanism, and regularly checking for updates ensures you are protected against the latest known vulnerabilities.
Tor Browser successfully connected to the Tor network on Manjaro Linux
Tor Browser successfully connected and ready for secure browsing

Managing Tor Browser on Manjaro Linux

To ensure an optimal and secure browsing experience, it’s important to regularly update and properly remove Tor Browser when needed. Manjaro Linux users can manage Tor Browser installations, whether done through Yay or the tarball method, with ease. The following sections guide you through these processes.

Update Tor Browser on Manjaro

Updating Tor Browser ensures you have the latest security features and performance improvements. This process varies slightly based on your installation method.

Yay Update Method for Tor Browser

For Tor Browser installed via Yay, use the following command:

yay -Syu --devel --timeupdate
  • --devel targets the development versions of packages for updates.
  • --timeupdate syncs your system’s time before updating, crucial for processing updates correctly.

Tarball Update Method for Tor Browser

If you installed Tor Browser using the tarball method, update by downloading the latest version from the Tor Project website. Replace the existing installation by extracting the new version:

tar -xvJf tor-browser-linux64-{version}_ALL.tar.xz -C ~/Applications/

Replace {version} with the current version number. The -C flag directs the extraction to the directory where Tor Browser is installed.

Remove Tor Browser from Manjaro

Whether you need to uninstall Tor Browser for troubleshooting or other reasons, here’s how to do it based on your installation method.

Yay AUR Helper Remove Method for Tor Browser

To remove Tor Browser installed via Yay, execute:

yay -Rns tor-browser --noconfirm
  • --noconfirm skips manual confirmation steps, streamlining the uninstallation process.

Tarball Manual Installation Remove Method for Tor Browser

To remove Tor Browser installed with the tarball method, delete its directory:

rm -rf ~/Applications/tor-browser

This command permanently deletes the Tor Browser folder and all its contents.


Throughout this guide, we’ve explored various methods to install, update, and manage Tor Browser on your Manjaro Linux system, covering both the Yay and tarball methods. Remember, regular updates are crucial for maintaining security and accessing new features. As you continue to use Tor Browser, prioritize your privacy and security settings, and don’t hesitate to revisit the tips and configurations discussed here. Whether you’re a seasoned Linux user or new to the platform, these steps should enhance your experience with Tor Browser, keeping your online journey both secure and enjoyable. Keep exploring, stay safe, and enjoy the unique benefits that Tor Browser offers on Manjaro Linux!

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