How to Create a Web App in Linux Mint

<p class="heading_excerpt">Missing a much-wanted app on Linux? Use Linux Mint's new Web App Manager to run websites as standalone apps.</p>

        If you haven't heard, Linux Mint 20.1 "Ulyssa" just dropped, and it comes prepackaged with a new utility called Web App Manager. In short, it allows you open and use a website, such as Twitter, Facebook, or Discord, as if it were a standalone app.

        Here's how Mint's Web App Manager works and how to put it to use.

                Turn a Website Into an App

        Mint's new Web App Manager uses your preferred web browser to host an instance of the website you'd like to use, but with the navigation bar and other browser features hidden from view. Contained within its own resizable window, you can then use the website like an app.

        Firefox, Chrome, and Chromium are the officially supported browsers right now, so you'll need to have one of those browsers installed for Web App Manager to work.

                Why Use Web Apps?

        Web apps are a great workaround for apps that don't have official desktop applications, or no support for Linux.

        Related: How to Install Microsoft Office on Linux

        A web app can also make multi-tasking easier, particularly if you utilize workspaces in your workflow, since the websites you frequently use are in separate windows instead of tabs inside of one window.

                Installing and Using Web App Manager

        It should be already installed on your system if you've installed or upgraded to Mint 20.1. If you don't have Web App Manager on your system, just enter this command to install it:

                    sudo apt install webapp-manager

        If you're running a different distro or Mint version, you can install the DEB file from this link.

        Once it's installed, find the Web Apps launcher in your start menu and open it. You'll see an empty list and a few controls. Click the + button to begin creating your first web app.

        After giving it a Name and the Address for the web app's location, an appropriate icon may automatically appear. If it doesn't, click the Icon download button to the right of the address box to try to find icons online.

        Selecting a Category determines how the web app launcher is organized in your start menu and other launcher applications.

        Click OK to save your web app. After saving it, your web app should now appear in your start menu. You can also place that launcher in your Plank or taskbar, and it will look and feel like a real app installed on your PC.

                Web App Extensions and Shortcuts

        Certain browser extensions might make your web app experience better. You can choose and modify them in your browser's settings.

        Related: Productivity Chrome Extensions That Secretly Help Your Security

        To do this with Chrome or Chromium, you'll have to open a regular instance of the app on its own and modify extensions there. Then, reload the web app.

        If you're running your web app with Firefox, however, you can simply open the web app and press Alt to show the main menubar. Then, click Tools > Add-Ons to control your extensions.

                Linux Mint: One of the Best?

        The new web app manager is just one reason you might pick Linux Mint as your distro of choice. There are many others worth considering, however, and you just might find a new favorite.

        What Is the Best Linux Distro for Laptops?
                        <p class="">Old laptop? New laptop? There is a Linux distro for every laptop type, so here are some of the best options.</p>

About The Author

        Jordan Gloor
                                (14 Articles Published)

            Jordan is a tutor and journalist who's passionate about making Linux accessible and stress-free for everyone. He has a BA in English and a thing for hot tea. During the warm seasons, he enjoys cycling the hills of the Ozarks where he lives.

                From Jordan Gloor

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