How to Install VSCodium on Pop!_OS

For Pop!_OS users seeking a privacy-centric integrated development environment (IDE), this guide on “How to Install VSCodium on Pop!_OS” is your go-to resource. While VSCodium and the renowned Visual Studio Code (VS Code) share many similarities, there are pivotal differences that set them apart:

  • Open-Source Nature: VSCodium is a fully open-source version of VS Code.
  • Privacy Focus: Telemetry and tracking, often concerned with VS Code, are entirely removed in VSCodium.
  • Stable Environment: VSCodium’s updates are less frequent than VS Code’s, ensuring a more consistent developer experience.
  • Extension Marketplace: Instead of Microsoft’s marketplace, VSCodium taps into the open-vsx registry from the Eclipse Foundation.

Given Pop!_OS’s emphasis on privacy, security, and open-source values, VSCodium aligns perfectly with its philosophy, making it a compelling choice for developers on this platform.

Let’s dive into the installation process of VSCodium on Pop!_OS.

Section 1: InstallVSCodium on Pop!_OS

Step 1: Ensuring Pop!_OS System Packages are Up-to-date

The preliminary step before installing VSCodium is to verify and update your Pop!_OS system’s package listings. This process aims to avoid possible conflicts during the installation. Execute the following command to refresh your package list:

sudo apt update

After the package list update, the next step is to upgrade outdated packages on your system. An upgrade ensures your installed software is current, enhancing system stability. Run the following command to perform the upgrade:

sudo apt upgrade

Step 3: Installation of Essential Packages

For the smooth operation of VSCodium, your system needs certain dependencies. These dependencies are vital for the proper functioning of VSCodium. Use the following command to install these prerequisites:

sudo apt install dirmngr software-properties-common apt-transport-https curl -y

When these packages are installed, this command ensures they are updated to their latest versions.

Step 4: Addition of the VSCodium Repository

The subsequent step involves importing the GPG key and the VSCodium repository into our Pop!_OS system. This process is necessary for system recognition and trust establishment with the VSCodium source.

First, the GPG key is imported. The GPG key is a security measure that validates the authenticity of the downloaded packages. This command retrieves and installs the key:

curl -fSsL | sudo gpg --dearmor | sudo tee /usr/share/keyrings/vscodium.gpg > /dev/null

With the GPG key in place, we import the VSCodium repository. The repository is the package source for VSCodium. Run the following command to add the repository:

echo deb [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/vscodium.gpg] vscodium main | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/vscodium.list

Step 5: Updating the APT Packages Index

After the new VSCodium repository addition, another APT update is required. This update is for your system to acknowledge the newly added VSCodium repository and include it in the package listings. Use the following command to update the APT packages index:

sudo apt update

Step 6: VSCodium Installation

Install the stable release of VSCodium using this command:

sudo apt install codium -y

Section 2: Launching VSCodium on Pop!_OS

After successfully installing VSCodium, you might be excited to get it up and running. There are two primary ways to launch the VSCodium application on Pop!_OS: via the command-line terminal or the Graphical User Interface (GUI).

Command Line Terminal Method

For individuals who prefer engaging with the terminal for quick and efficient interaction, VSCodium can be effortlessly launched by executing the codium command. This command initiates the stable release of VSCodium that you installed:


Executing these commands brings VSCodium to life, primed to support your coding requirements.

Graphical User Interface Method

If you are more at ease using the GUI or trying to get the hang of the Pop!_OS interface, VSCodium can be launched with just a few clicks.

From your desktop, follow the pathway below:

  • Direct your attention to “Show Applications.” It is symbolized by a grid of dots usually located at the dock’s bottom.
  • Here, amongst your installed applications, you will locate VSCodium. A simple click on it sets it into motion.

Example of VSCodium application icons on Pop!_OS applications menu:

Screenshot showing how to launch VSCodium from the 'Show Applications' menu icon on Pop!_OS.Pin
Accessing VSCodium from the ‘Show Applications’ menu on Pop!_OS.

Section 3: Getting Started with VSCodium on Pop!_OS: Tips and Tricks

So, you’ve successfully installed VSCodium on your Pop!_OS system. Now what? While diving right in and exploring the interface is practical, a few tips and tricks can significantly enhance your initial experience. Here’s some advice to get you off to a flying start with VSCodium.

Understanding the Layout

VSCodium has an intuitive layout designed with ease of use in mind. As a new user, it’s beneficial to familiarize yourself with this layout. You’ll notice a sidebar on the left with five main options: Explorer, Search, Source Control, Run, and Extensions. Each button opens a panel that houses relevant functionalities and tools.

Configuring Your Environment

The power of VSCodium lies in its ability to adapt to your specific needs. Go to File > Preferences > Settings, where you’ll find an extensive list of customizable options. These settings let you adjust how the editor behaves and appears. Take some time to tweak these preferences and tailor your VSCodium environment to your comfort.

Taking Advantage of Extensions

Extensions expand the functionality of VSCodium. They can support additional languages, debuggers, and other tools to streamline your development workflow. Access the Extensions panel (the last button on the sidebar) and search for extensions that align with your programming needs.

Using the Integrated Terminal

VSCodium has a built-in terminal that you can access without leaving your workspace. You can access the terminal from the top menu (View > Terminal) or using the shortcut `Ctrl+“. This built-in terminal follows the same rules as your default system terminal and is excellent for running scripts or command-line tasks while you’re coding.

Learning the Keyboard Shortcuts

The key to efficiency in VSCodium is knowing your keyboard shortcuts. Open the Keyboard Shortcuts editor (File > Preferences > Keyboard Shortcuts) to see a list of all the available shortcuts. You can even customize these to suit your workflow better.

Screenshot of VSCodium successfully launched and operational on Pop!_OS.Pin
A live example of VSCodium running smoothly on Pop!_OS.

Section 4: Overseeing VSCodium on Pop!_OS

This part aims to guide you through fundamental management tasks associated with your VSCodium installation on Pop!_OS. We will walk you through how to update your installed packages and how to remove VSCodium from your system, should the need arise.

Refreshing VSCodium on Pop!_OS

Maintaining the most recent versions of VSCodium and other installed software is crucial for system stability and security. Pop!_OS offers a straightforward way to perform this task utilizing its Advanced Package Tool (APT).

The command to update all APT packages is:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

Running the command above fetches the package list from the repository, thus updating the APT package cache. Afterward, the upgrade command takes over, updating all installed packages to their latest versions, VSCodium included.

Uninstalling VSCodium from Pop!_OS

Should you decide to remove VSCodium from your system, Pop!_OS offers a clear and simple way to achieve this.

The command to remove the stable version of VSCodium is:

sudo apt remove codium

Once you’ve uninstalled VSCodium, removing the VSCodium repository from your system is recommended. This will keep your package list clean.

To remove the VSCodium repository, use this command:

sudo rm /etc/apt/sources.list.d/vscodium.list

Lastly, as an extra step towards clean management and security, you might want to remove the GPG key related to VSCodium.

You can do this with the following command:

sudo rm /usr/share/keyrings/vscodium.gpg

Wrapping Up

To sum up, we’ve journeyed through installing VSCodium on Pop!_OS, a venture essential for developers seeking an open-source, lightweight, and feature-rich code editor. We’ve covered the initial installation process, understanding the layout, configuring your environment, utilizing extensions, accessing the integrated terminal, learning keyboard shortcuts, and harnessing the command palette. We’ve also discussed how to keep VSCodium updated and the steps to uninstall it. It’s recommended to regularly check for updates to ensure optimal software performance and security.

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