Can your phone or tablet run Linux?
To run Linux on Android, you have several options, depending on whether your Android device is rooted or not.
In almost all cases, your phone, tablet, or even Android TV can run the Linux desktop environment.
You can also install a Linux command-line tool on Android. It does not matter if your phone is rooted or not.
The following options are available for installing Linux on your Android tablet or phone:
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To install Linux on not rooted Android:
- Debian No root
To install Linux on a rooted Android device:
- Use Linux Deploy.
- Install Kali Linux for penetration testing.
There are several other ways to give you the experience of working with Linux or the same desktop experience in Android. We will examine them in the following.
Install Linux on Android without root
First, we will look at three ways to install Linux on your Android phone or tablet without rooting the device.
How to run Linux on Android devices with Debian No root
The best way to run Linux on your phone with minimal hassle is with Debian No root. You need Android 4.1 or higher to run this app.
The benefit of Debian No root is that it installs Debian Buster on your phone with a compatibility layer.
This allows you to run Debian applications without having to root Android. Given the difficulty of rooting for some devices, this is useful.
Performance with Debian Neurot is not great, but it can be used. For best results installing Linux for Android, root your device first.
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Download: Debian Norut (free)
Get Linux on Android with UserLAnd
Replacing Debian No root, UserLAnd is an Android app from the Play Store that offers the option of your choice. In addition to Alpine, Arch, Debian, Kali, and Ubuntu, this tool allows you to install applications.
Before installing Linux on Android, you can install tools such as GIMP, Firefox, and LibreOffice. Simply run the program, agree to the permissions, and select Install to install. There is an option to view the installed version of Linux on SSH (command line) or use the VNC program (for desktop).
The setting and use is amazing. So, if you are looking for a solution to run Linux on Android, give it a try.
Download: UserLAnd (free)
AndroNix installs Linux on Android
With eight distances, this handy tool also offers modified versions of some Linux operating systems to improve performance. The distribution of the eight standards are:
Arc Fedora Manjaro Alp
Parrot OS Among these, Ubuntu, Debian, Ubuntu and Manjaro have modified versions available for Android devices with ARMv8 chipsets and later.
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To install a Linux operating system on Android with AndroNix, tap the button you want, then tap Install. To copy commands in a Termux terminal window as well as select a desktop environment, you must follow the steps.
The video above provides more details. Just make sure Termux and a VNC viewer (like VNC Viewer) are installed. You need VNC to use the selected Linux desktop.
AndroNix is free but has a premium version that removes ads and introduces additional (non-critical) features. This includes support for offline downloads of operating systems.
Download: AndroNix (free and in-app purchases available)
3 other ways to run Linux on rootless Android
While we’ve covered some good options for running Linux on your Android device, other methods are available:
DeX: If you own a modern Samsung device, you can switch your hardware to DeX mode with DeX mode. Although not exactly a Linux operating system, it is a desktop environment with a Linux kernel.
Remote desktop to a system running Linux, using the Splashtop program.
Termux: This command line-based Linux environment allows you to run Linux applications on Android. So, it is literally Linux on Android!
Rooted Android and Linux installation
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For rooted Android users or people who want to root their Android devices for the first time, installing Linux is much easier and faster.
How to run Linux on rooted Android devices
If you have a rooted device, you can install different versions of Linux on Android using the Linux Deploy tool.
Then, do Linux. On the first run, tap Start to enable root permissions, then tap Settings in the lower-right corner.
Use the displayed options menu to select your desired distribution. Debian, Ubuntu, Gentoo, Fedora, and more are available for installation. We used Arch Linux.
To view a Linux desktop on your phone, you need to check the Enable box under GUI. Also, make sure VNC is selected for the Graphics subsystem. Next, check the screen resolution under the GUI settings and make sure you are satisfied with the Desktop environment.
Finally, find the username and password. Either take notes of them or turn them into something more memorable that you will remember better.