Question about installing software with the terminal

I’m probably trying to do something that is not recommended but I’ll ask anyway.

I want to install firefox (but this question could apply to more software) in my (cloned) anon-whonix qube. I can do it without a problem with “sudo install firefox-esr” and then launch it with “firefox” in the terminal. So it works fine. But my question is how do I get it to show in qube settings>applications? I’d like to have it as a launch option with the other apps.

I haven’t mucked around with any templates. I’m just feeling my way here and doing these sort of experiments in things that I can break without a problem. I have previously used whonix in virtualbox and had a few things installed like firefox, gajim, veracrypt etc so I am looking to install some other things in my qubes whonix. I am mindful of deviating too far from the supplied qubes and introducing problems by doing too much.

If there is some reading I can be pointed to, or a quick tip I’d appreciate it.

Installing software in whonix is fine. There are applications for firefox in whonix.
Just be advised, that using Firefox over Tor will severely limit your anonymity against the sites you browse with it.

Regarding installing stuff in anon-whonix:
anon-whonix is an AppVM. This means that only your home directory and some minor others are persistent between reboots. The applications will be inherited by your template.

Installed software will be uninstalled on the next reboot because of this.

To install applications permanently, you have to either:

  • Create a standaloneVM based on whonix-ws-16 and install it there
  • Install in the template (whonix-ws-16)


  • Strongly recommended way: Clone the whonix-ws-16 template to something like whonix-ws-16-firefox, install your software there, shutdown the template and change the template of anon-whonix to whonix-ws-16-firefox.

You can then refresh the appmenus of your “new” anon-whonix and add firefox.

How to add applications to the menu

In the GUI of the settings under the “Application” tab there is a button “Refresh applications”. This will start your qube and read all the applications installed.
After doing that you can move it from the “Available” list to the “Selected” list.

The update of your actual menu might take a couple of seconds. If it does not show, you can issue qvm-sync-appmenus anon-whonix in your dom0.


See Installing Software in Qubes (all methods) and Adding shortcut to start menu.