The Vivaldi browser is a powerful and feature-rich alternative to the default Firefox Extended Support Release (ESR) version that comes pre-installed on Debian distributions. It is developed by Vivaldi Technologies, a company founded by the former CEO of Opera Software. Vivaldi offers a wide range of customization options and unique features, making it an attractive choice for Debian users who are looking for an alternative to Firefox ESR. This introduction will delve into the key differences between Vivaldi and Firefox ESR and why Debian users may prefer Vivaldi as their go-to browser.
Key differences between Vivaldi and Firefox ESR:
- Customizability: Vivaldi is well-known for its high degree of customization options. Users can tailor the browser to their preferences by changing themes, modifying toolbars, and adjusting tab management. This level of personalization sets Vivaldi apart from Firefox ESR, which has limited customization options.
- Tab Management: Vivaldi offers advanced tab management features, such as tab stacking, tab hibernation, and split-screen views. These features allow users to organize and navigate their browsing sessions better, whereas Firefox ESR provides only basic tab management functionality.
- Built-in Tools: Vivaldi comes with several built-in tools, including a note-taking feature, an image capture utility, and a sidebar for quick access to bookmarks, history, and downloads. Firefox ESR, on the other hand, requires the installation of separate extensions for these functionalities.
- Performance: While both browsers are relatively fast, Vivaldi is known to be more resource-efficient than Firefox ESR. Vivaldi’s adaptive interface and background tab hibernation features help reduce system resource usage, which can be beneficial for users with limited hardware resources.
- Privacy and Security: Vivaldi puts a strong emphasis on user privacy and security. It does not track user activity and offers a built-in ad blocker and tracker blocker. Although Firefox ESR also prioritizes privacy and security, some users may prefer Vivaldi’s approach to these matters.
- Frequent Updates: Unlike Firefox ESR, which focuses on stability and receives updates less frequently, Vivaldi follows a rapid release cycle. This means that new features and improvements are introduced more often, providing users with an up-to-date browsing experience.
Considering these differences, the Vivaldi browser stands out as an appealing alternative to Firefox ESR for Debian users who value customization, enhanced tab management, and built-in tools. The following guide will demonstrate how to install the Vivaldi browser on your Debian 12 Bookworm, Debian 11 Bullseye, or Debian 10 Buster system.
Table of Contents
Section 1: Import Vivaldi Repository
Step 1: Update Debian
Before starting the installation process, update your Debian system to ensure all existing packages are up to date. This will minimize potential conflicts during the installation. Execute the following command in your terminal:
sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
Step 2: Install Required Packages
To complete the installation, you will need to install specific software packages. These packages are commonly found on most Linux distributions and are necessary for the installation process. Run the following command in your terminal:
sudo apt install software-properties-common apt-transport-https curl ca-certificates -y
Running this command will only install packages that are not already present on your system.
Step 3: Import Vivaldi Repository
First, download the GPG key, which is used to verify the authenticity of the packages you are downloading and installing. Run the following command in your terminal:
curl -fsSL https://repo.vivaldi.com/archive/linux_signing_key.pub | gpg --dearmor | sudo tee /usr/share/keyrings/vivaldi.gpg > /dev/null
Next, add the Vivaldi repository by executing the following command:
echo deb [arch=amd64,armhf signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/vivaldi.gpg] https://repo.vivaldi.com/archive/deb/ stable main | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/vivaldi.list
Step 4: Update Package List
After importing the repository, update your repository list to reflect the new repository changes. Run the following command in your terminal:
sudo apt update
Step 5: Install Vivaldi Browser
You can now install either the stable or snapshot (nightly) version of the Vivaldi Browser. Note that you can install both versions simultaneously.
Install Vivaldi Browser Stable:
Run the following command to install the stable version of Vivaldi Browser:
sudo apt install vivaldi-stable
Verify the version and build of the installed Vivaldi Browser using the following command:
Optional – Install Vivaldi Snapshot (Nightly):
For users or developers who want to test Vivaldi’s development version, run the following command:
sudo apt install vivaldi-snapshot
Step 6: Verify Vivaldi Installation
Confirm the version and build of the Vivaldi Browser installed on your operating system using the appropriate command:
For the stable version:
For the snapshot (nightly) version:
Keep in mind that the stable version is recommended for daily browsing. The development version should not be used for any serious browsing or transactions.
Section 2: Launch Vivaldi Browser
After successfully installing the Vivaldi Browser, you can launch it in several ways.
Step 1: Launch Vivaldi from the Terminal
To launch the Vivaldi Browser directly from the terminal, use the appropriate command for the version you have installed:
For the stable version:
For the snapshot (nightly) version:
Running these commands will open the Vivaldi Browser immediately.
Step 2: Launch Vivaldi from the Desktop
For most desktop users, you can launch the Vivaldi Browser through the graphical user interface (GUI) by following these steps:
- Open the Activities menu (usually located in the top-left corner of the screen).
- Click on Show Applications (represented by a grid of dots icon).
- Search for “Vivaldi” in the search bar, or scroll through the list of installed applications.
- Click on the Vivaldi icon corresponding to the version you want to launch (either Vivaldi for the stable version or Vivaldi Snapshot for the nightly version).
Example of launching Vivaldi browser stable or snapshot on Debian Linux:
Section 3: Getting Started with Vivaldi Browser on Debian
In this section, we will explore some tips and tricks to help you get started with the Vivaldi Browser on Debian Linux. We will cover general tips, customizations, and other helpful insights to enhance your browsing experience.
- Quick Commands: Vivaldi offers a powerful feature called Quick Commands, which allows you to access various browser functions quickly using keyboard shortcuts. Press
F2to open the Quick Commands menu, and type in your desired action (such as opening a new tab, searching your browsing history, or managing your bookmarks).
- Web Panels: Vivaldi’s Web Panels enable you to view multiple websites simultaneously in a split-screen view. To add a new Web Panel, click the “+” button on the sidebar, and enter the URL of the website you want to add. This feature is particularly useful for monitoring social media feeds, news websites, or chat applications while browsing other sites.
- Mouse Gestures: Vivaldi supports Mouse Gestures, which allow you to perform common browser actions using simple mouse movements. To enable this feature, go to
Settings > Mouse > Mouse Gestures, and toggle the feature on. You can also customize your own gestures or modify the default ones.
- Themes: Personalize your Vivaldi Browser by applying a custom theme. Go to
Settings > Themes, and choose from the available presets or create your own unique theme by selecting the “Create New Theme” button.
- Tab Management: Vivaldi offers various ways to manage your open tabs, including Tab Stacking, Tab Tiling, and Tab Hibernation. To stack tabs, simply drag one tab over another. To enable Tab Tiling, right-click on a tab stack and select “Tile Tab Stack.” For Tab Hibernation, right-click on a tab and choose “Hibernate Background Tabs” to save system resources.
- Customizing Toolbars: Rearrange, add, or remove buttons from the Vivaldi toolbars to suit your preferences. Right-click on any toolbar, and select “Customize.” From there, you can drag and drop buttons or access additional customization options.
Other Helpful Tips
- Built-in Note-taking: Vivaldi has a built-in note-taking feature that allows you to save notes, links, and screenshots directly in the browser. To create a new note, click the “Notes” icon in the sidebar, and then click the “+” button.
- Capture Tool: Vivaldi’s built-in Capture Tool lets you take screenshots of entire web pages or selected areas. To use this feature, click the “Capture” icon in the status bar at the bottom-right corner of the browser window, and choose your desired capture option.
- Privacy and Security: Vivaldi offers various privacy and security features, such as a built-in ad and tracker blocker. To enable this feature, go to
Settings > Privacy > Tracker and Ad Blocking, and choose your preferred blocking level (none, moderate, or strict).
These tips should help you get started with the Vivaldi Browser on Debian Linux and make the most of its unique features and customizations. Remember to explore the various settings and options available to tailor your browsing experience to your preferences.
Example of Vivaldi Browser first-time configuration screen on Debian Linux:
Section 4: Additional Commands & Tips
This section will cover how to update and remove the Vivaldi Browser on your Debian system using terminal commands. We will also discuss the removal of the Vivaldi repository and GPG key if you no longer plan to use the Vivaldi Browser on your system.
How to Update Vivaldi Browser
Although most desktop users rely on automatic updates or auto-update notifications, you can also update the Vivaldi Browser manually using terminal commands. This method allows you to check for updates for your entire system.
Step 1: Check for Updates
To check for updates, run the following command in your terminal:
sudo apt update
Step 2: Upgrade Vivaldi Browser
If an update is available, you can upgrade the Vivaldi Browser by executing the following command:
sudo apt upgrade
How to Remove Vivaldi Browser
If you decide to uninstall the Vivaldi Browser, follow these steps:
Step 1: Remove Vivaldi Browser Stable
To remove the stable version of the Vivaldi Browser, execute the following terminal command:
sudo apt remove vivaldi-stable
Step 2: Remove Vivaldi Browser Snapshot
To remove the snapshot version of the Vivaldi Browser, use the following command:
sudo apt remove vivaldi-snapshot
Note: Unused dependencies will also be removed during this process.
How to Delete Vivaldi Repository and GPG Key
If you no longer plan to use or install the Vivaldi Browser on your system, follow these steps to remove the Vivaldi repository and GPG key:
Step 1: Delete the Vivaldi Repository
To remove the Vivaldi repository, run the following command:
sudo rm /etc/apt/sources.list.d/vivaldi.list
Step 2: Delete the GPG Key
Finally, delete the GPG key by executing this command:
sudo rm /usr/share/keyrings/vivaldi.gpg
By following these steps, you can keep your Vivaldi Browser up to date, remove it if necessary, and delete the Vivaldi repository and GPG key if you no longer plan to use the browser on your Debian system.
Conclusion: Installing Vivaldi on Debian
In conclusion, installing the Vivaldi Browser on Debian Linux is a straightforward process that provides you with a powerful and customizable alternative to the default Firefox ESR browser. Vivaldi offers many features, such as Quick Commands, Web Panels, and Mouse Gestures, and advanced customization options, like themes, tab management, and toolbar adjustments. Following the steps outlined in this guide, you can easily install, update, and remove the Vivaldi Browser on your Debian system, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable browsing experience.
Additional Resources and Links
To further enhance your knowledge and understanding of the Vivaldi Browser, we have compiled a list of official resources and links below:
- Vivaldi Official Website: The official homepage of the Vivaldi Browser, where you can find the latest news, updates, and downloads. https://vivaldi.com/
- Vivaldi Help: The official Vivaldi Help center which provides extensive documentation on various topics, including installation, customization, and troubleshooting. https://help.vivaldi.com/
- Vivaldi Blog: The official Vivaldi Blog, featuring articles on product updates, feature highlights, and browser tips. https://vivaldi.com/blog/
- Vivaldi Community: The official Vivaldi Community, where you can participate in forums, share your knowledge, and interact with other Vivaldi users. https://forum.vivaldi.net/
- Debian Wiki: The official Debian Wiki contains comprehensive information on Debian Linux, including installation, package management, and system administration. https://wiki.debian.org/