elinks: The best web browser for Linux terminal

In these last days, my connectivity problems have grown in an accelerated way, currently counting on a free connection from the municipality, with the speed and security limitations that it entails. This limitation has forced me to reuse internet browsers for the Linux terminal, indeed, now I do my research from the console and using elinks, which I consider the best of its kind.

This of seeing myself in the obligation to navigate through a terminal, which is a practical way to access information for many, has reminded me of my times when I learned to configure servers without a graphical interface and that the only way we had to researching something was through these excellent tools. internet browsers

What is elinks?

elinks is an advanced web browser for terminal, open source, written by Mikulas Patocka and text-based for UNIX-based operating systems, with functions (HTTP / FTP / ..), as well as support for frames and tables.

This tool is highly customizable and its functionalities can be extended through applications written in Lua, Perl, Ruby o Guile. It was born with the intention of improving its predecessor Links and little by little different functionalities were added, among which the use of tabs to navigate, the incorporation of bookmarks and the possibility of downloading stand out. elinks-features

Elinks features

  • Support for CSS y ECMAScript.
  • Tabbed browsing.
  • Muchos protocolos disponibles (local files, finger, http, https, ftp, smb, ipv4, ipv6).
  • Autenticación (Autenticación HTTP, Autenticación de Proxy).
  • Cookies persistentes.
  • Interfaz  de Menús y cuadros de diálogo bastante amigable.
  • Soporte para scripts (Perl, Lua, Guile).
  • Visualización de Tablas y Marcos.
  • Colores.
  • Descargas en Background.
  • Translated into many languages.
  • History, Bookmarks, Keyboard Shortcuts, Search Engine.
  • Widely customizable.
  • Easy installation and use.
  • Among many other features.

How to install elinks?

The installation of elinks is easy and is present in almost all the repositories of the most popular distributions. You can access the official source with the following commands:

# git clone http://elinks.cz/elinks.git # cd elinks

Install elinks on Debian and derivatives.

# apt-get install elinks

Install elinks on Red Hat and derivatives.

# yum -y install elinks

Install elinks on Arch Linux and derivatives

# yaourt -S elinks

How to use elinks?

You can start elinks with

$ elinks

or, start the browser directly on the web you want:

$ elinks blog.fromlinux.net


Due to all these characteristics, its easy handling, the advantages of being able to extend them according to my requirements, its high degree of customization and its easy installation is what has made me consider elinks"Best web browser for Linux terminal«.

Have you used this web browser before? How about?

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  1.   tenshalite said

    What I haven't found in both Debian and Archlinux yet is how to enable tabbed browsing.

    1.    Luigys toro said

      As @federico comments, these are the steps:

      inside Elinks, press ESC and go to the menu option File -> Open new tab, or press the t key, and it automatically asks you for a new URL

    2.    Smint19 said

      For those of us who still connect with dial up modems it is the best option because with download speeds lower than 10 kb / s I have access to all the information. I only regret that it does not allow to open emails because it does not have javascript support but it has nothing to envy to the most pop browsers. What is ugly or simple is replaced quickly and with low consumption.

  2.   federico said

    Very complete and good this article, Luigys. Regarding the question asked by @tenshalito, inside Elinks, you press ESC and go to the menu option File -> Open new tab, or press the t key, and it automatically asks you for a new URL. Like Luigys, I use Links2 and Elinks a lot, behind a Squid Proxy with authentication.

    1.    Luigys toro said

      Thank you very much Federico, exactly that is the answer to the tenshalite problem

  3.   ice said

    in Archlinux it is in the community repository. using pacman, not yaourt. 🙂

  4.   Francisco said

    Does it work in tty?

    1.    Luigys toro said


  5.   Ces912 said

    Excellent article, very interesting.

  6.   linuxito said

    How do I enable https they do not open pages