How to Install Tor Browser in Ubuntu 20.04

Tor is known as the most secure browser for protecting your online privacy. Tor is a free and open-source Web browser based on Firefox. Your connection is encrypted and protected from trackers and network surveillance.

In this tutorial, we are going to walk you through the complete installation process of Tor in Ubuntu 20.04 or later but this is also applicable to other Ubuntu-based Distributions such as Pop_OS, Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Linux Mint, Elementary OS, and many more.

What makes Tor Special?

When you are surfing websites using your standard Browser such as Chrome, you are directly connected to the website without any Encryption and that makes your IP known to the trackers and network surveillance tools.

On the other hand, Tor adds multiple layers of encryption to your connection and redirects your traffic to multiple relays which are known as nodes. When your information passes from node to node, each node will only decrypt the data that specifies the next node.

Throughout the process of bouncing from node to node, your main IP and end node remain unknown till the end node. Your final node will be also unknown to your primary IP and location and just passes the required information. 

Because of this complex process, none of the surveillance trackers will get your original Data at any node or final destination. You get a slower experience because your request will go through many nodes before reaching its End destination. 

Key features of Tor Browser

  1. It is free and open-source
  2. Guarantees you complex encryption that is hard to break
  3. Keeps your identity safe and secure over the internet
  4. Allows you to visit restricted websites

Installing Tor Browser in Ubuntu 20.04

There are many ways to install the software in Ubuntu but we are going for specific 4 methods that are easy to understand and can be applied without being a Linux expert.

Method 1: Installing Tor Browser From Ubuntu Software Centre

This is the easiest method of all because you don’t have to use your Terminal and doesn’t involve any complexity. Just some clicks here and there and have Tor installed on your Ubuntu Machine.

Click on Activities and search for Ubuntu Software and hit Enter for the first result.

1. search ubuntu software

Search Tor browser by clicking on the search bar. You will get the first result for the Tor Browser launcher. Click on that option.

2. search and open tor browser

Click on the Install button. It would ask for your password. Enter your password and it will start downloading.

3. click on install

Once the installation is complete, search for the Tor browser by clicking on Activities. Click on the Tor browser and it will start downloading the browser.

4. searching tor browser in app menu

5. showing downloading tor for the first time

After the installation, Tor will be launched. Click on Always connect automatically and then click on connect. 

6. always connect to tor and accept

That’s it. Tor is installed and configured for your daily usage.

7. final results

Method 2: Installing Tor Browser using GUI

This is another beginner-friendly method to install Tor on your Ubuntu Machine. In this method, we will be downloading Tor from its official website. 

Open any of your favorite browsers and go to the download page of Tor. Click on Download for Linux and it will start downloading Tor.

1. Click on download for Linux

Open your File Manager and click on Downloads. You will find the downloaded Tor file.

2. search files in activities

3. go to downloads and locate tor browser

Right-click on Download file and click on extract here. And you will see the new folder created.

3. extracting

Tor has been downloaded but we are required to Register Tor as App so that we can access it through the App menu. Open your Terminal and follow the given commands:

 cd Downloads/tor-browser-linux64-11.0.6_en-US/tor-browser_en-US/ 

4. cd downloads

You may have a newer version so check your folder’s name accordingly.

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

5. register app

And that’s it. Tor has been installed on your Ubuntu machine.

Method 3: Installing Tor Browser using Terminal

We all know the efficiency you can get using Terminal and if you are a bit familiar with Terminal, you can easily. Just follow the given commands and you will get your privacy-centric browser installed.

Click on Activities and search terminal. Open Terminal and use the following code to add a Repository for downloading Tor Browser.

1. Search terminal

 sudo add-apt-repository ppa:micahflee/ppa 

2. Adding Repository

Once the required repository has been added to our System, we have to update all the repositories to get the latest software.

 sudo apt update 

3. sudo apt update

After updating Repositories, we can download Tor by the given command:

 sudo apt install torbrowser-launcher 

4. sudo apt install torbrowser-launcher

Tor has been downloaded to your System. 

Uninstallation of Tor from Ubuntu 20.04

Having Tor installed on your Ubuntu Machine won’t harm your System but if you are running out of space, you can remove it easily from your system. 

Method 1: Uninstalling Tor from Ubuntu using Ubuntu Software

This is the easiest method to remove From your System. If you have followed the 1st method to install Tor, you can use this method. 

Open Ubuntu Software and search for Tor browser. You will get the first result with written “Installed” over it. Click on that Result.

1. search tor browser and click on installed

Once you click on that result, you will be given details of Tor with the remove button. Click on the Remove button.

2. click on remove

It will ask for your surely. Click on remove again and that’s it. Tor has been removed.

3. click on final remove

Method 2: Uninstalling Tor from Ubuntu using GUI

If you have installed Tor by downloading packages from their official site similar to our 2nd method of installation, you can use this method.

Open your file manager and locate the folder which you have extracted. In our case, it was in Downloads. Delete that folder.

1. remove folder

We have removed Tor but it will still show you the Tor icon in the App gallery. Because we registered that App. To remove the icon of Tor, we are required to remove that entry. Open your Terminal and use the following commands:

This command is used to get up the path where we have registered our app.

 cd .local/share/applications/ 

1. cd to directories

Now use the given command to remove the entry:

 rm start-tor-browser.desktop 

2. final removal

Method 3: Uninstalling Tor from Ubuntu using Terminal

This is the method is for those who have to download Tor by adding repositories to their Systems which is similar to 3rd method which we have shown to install Tor using Terminal.

This command will remove all the configurations which can be helpful for the reinstallation process. Open your Terminal and use this given command:

 sudo apt purge torbrowser-launcher tor 

1. sudo apt purge torbrowser-launcher tor

Tor has been removed from Ubuntu successfully.

Frequently asked questions related to Tor browser

Is it safe to use the Tor browser on Linux?

Yes, it is the safest browser you can get. Because it gives you advanced Encryption and Tor Relays to enhance your privacy. You can use it without worrying.

Does Tor keep history?

No. It does not store your history and will only store cookies for singes sessions. Once you close Tor, all the cookies will be removed.

Why is Tor so slow?

Because it does not connect you to the website instead, it will add multiple layers of encryption and your request will go through multiple nodes. This is the reason why it feels slower than your traditional browser.

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Conclusion

Tor is developed to protect your online privacy so that you can anonymously surf the web. You just have to install Tor in Ubuntu 20.04 System and you are ready for being anonymous on the Web.

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Sagar Sharma

Sagar always uses Linux to its core and loves to write the technical side of system administration! While he's not writing, you can always find him exploring new Linux distros!

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