Install Pinegrow on Linux

Instructions for running Pinegrow on Ubuntu and tips for troubleshooting on other Linux systems.

Please note that because of limited resources we are not able to provide instructions and support for installing Pinegrow on all Linux-based system. At this time, we provide instructions for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS, 18.04 LTS, 20.04 & 22.04 LTS, and some pointers for troubleshooting issues on other systems.

If you run into any issues with running Pinegrow on Linux and manage to solve them, please let us know so that we can include this information here.

In this guide we will provide:

  • General Ubuntu Desktop tips
  • Instructions for Ubuntu Desktop 16.04 LTS
  • Instructions for Ubuntu Desktop 18.04 LTS
  • Instructions for Ubuntu Desktop 20.04 LTS and 22.04 LTS
  • Known issues
  • Tips and pointers to troubleshoot issues on other Linux systems

General Ubuntu Desktop tips

Pinegrow is validated on Ubuntu Desktop 16.04 LTS (Pinegrow 4 and <) and Ubuntu Desktop 18.04 LTS & Ubuntu Desktop 20.04 & 22.04 LTS (Pinegrow 5 and >).

Since Pinegrow 4.2, In case Pinegrow doesn’t start on Linux, this is probably because the libnss system library needs to be updated with:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install libnss3

More info on

Installation instructions for Ubuntu Desktop 16.04 LTS

To install Pinegrow 4 and < the recommended process is the following:

  • Unzip the ZIP file to your preferred location on your hard drive
  • Double click on the Pinegrow icon (or Run Pinegrow from the terminal).

From the community: here is an Unofficial and Not Supported method of installing Pinegrow 3.0 on Ubuntu Linux 16.04.2

Installation instructions for Ubuntu Desktop 18.04 LTS

To install Pinegrow 5 and > the recommended process is the following:

  • VERY IMPORTANT: Proceed to all available updates for your 18.04 LTS system. Without this, the rest of the process – especially the installation of libgconf2-4 – will FAIL. Check the Bionic Beaver release notes here. (currently, as of April 15,2020, the very last version is 18.04.4 LTS)
  • Unzip the ZIP file to your preferred location on your hard drive
  • Open a terminal
  • Enter the command sudo apt -y install libgconf2-4 or sudo apt -y install libgconf-2-4 if you receive a message indicating that the package is unknown.
  • Double click on the Pinegrow.desktop icon
  • Select Trust and Launch

Why is it necessary to install the libgconf package?

In Ubuntu 16.10 and below, the libgconf package is a requirement of the ubuntu-desktop package, which means that it’s always available. However in Ubuntu 17.04 and higher versions, libgconf isn’t required by the ubuntu-desktop package, which means that it isn’t installed by default anymore.

We use NWJS as a foundation of the Pinegrow application and recently, libgconf has become a requirement for running on Linux.

Installation instructions for Ubuntu Desktop 20.04 LTS > 22.04 LTS

To install Pinegrow 5.x and > the recommended process is the following (please, watch the video and read the instructions):

  • Download Pinegrow from the application homepage.
  • Extract the content of the archive then put the application folder at your preferred location on your hard-drive.
  • From the application folder, right click at an empty space inside and choose Open In Terminal.
  • From the Terminal window, execute the following command:
  • Keep the terminal open, you’ll need to copy the output later
  • Now, open Pinegrow.desktop with the text editor and change the content of the Exec line from: 
Exec=sh -c "$(dirname %k)/PinegrowLibrary"



You should get something like:

  • Right click on Pinegrow.desktop and choose Copy to
  • Choose to copy the file on the Desktop.
  • From the Desktop, Right click on Pinegrow.desktop and choose Allow Launching.
  • Now close the terminal and double click on the launcher.

Pinegrow for users of NixOS

The following instructions are proposed by Florian Brandes.

Pinegrow is now packaged and ready for users of NixOS

For users of NixOS, the package just needs to be added to the system configuration.

For users who use the nix package manager on another distro, entering

nix-env -iA nixpkgs.pinegrow

will do the trick. For more info, users can have a look at the quick-start guide for nix.

Known issues

Drag & drop doesn’t work when running Ubuntu Desktop 16.04 LTS through VMWARE

This not “an issue” that we can fix with code but a technical constraint from one of the component we use to build Pinegrow.

Currently, the only workaround is to use the application on the host system instead of a Virtual machine.

Permission issues

Embedded Chromium (which is a component included in Pinegrow) is writing to /tmp which – according to our knowledge – should usually be open to all users, not just root.

For some templates Pinegrow crashes when opening the file

The crash doesn’t happen if Javascript is turned off while editing the page, so we suspect that the crash is connected by Firebase JS code.

For now, the solution is to uncheck Enable Javascript in Support -> Settings.

Install Pinegrow on Ubuntu interim releases > 20.04.x LTS

It has been brought to our attention that the installation of libatomic1 may be necessary for the proper functioning of Pinegrow on Ubuntu versions > 20.04.2 LTS

To proceed, type the following command from the terminal.

sudo apt install libatomic1

Troubleshooting Pinegrow on non-Ubuntu Linux systems

Here is a collection of tips. Please let us know if you find and solve any issues and we’ll include the information here.

Disable GPU

Try to start Pinegrow from the command line using the following options:

/PinegrowLinux64.6/PinegrowLibrary --disable-gpu --disable-software-rasterizer

Try running NW.JS

Pinegrow uses NW.JS to run as a desktop app. Under the hood it is a pure web application, packaged with NWJS, a desktop engine combining embedded Chromium browser and Node.

That means that if you can get NW.JS to run on your system, Pinegrow will also run. You can download NW.JS (SDK build) and try running it on your system.

Searching online for “Run NW.JS on <your system>” might offer some solutions.

Install Chromium

Often the cause of problems are missing system libraries required by Chromium browser. So, you can try to install Chromium on your system. As a part of the installation the missing libraries might be installed as well.

Run Pinegrow from command line

Run ./PinegrowLibrary from the command line to see any error messages about missing libraries. Users have reported that using the –disable-gpu command line argument causes NW.JS to display more detailed messages about the missing libraries.