Comprehensive Guide to Installing Discord on Windows and Linux from the Command Line

Since its launch in 2015, Discord has rapidly risen to become the #1 communication platform for over 150 million gamers and online communities worldwide. Originally built for gamers looking to chat without the lag of other VoIP apps, Discord’s free voice, video, and text chat services have attracted all types of communities from hobbyists to enterprise teams.

Especially during the work-from-home conditions of 2020 and remote learning mandates for students, Discord saw massive growth as people looked to stay connected. Business Insider Intelligence reports that Discord’s user base grew 46% year-over-year in 2021.

With privacy and security being more critical than ever, platforms like Discord aim to keep communication channels protected. Discord allows servers to be individually configured with permission levels, moderation tools, and optional end-to-end encryption powered by the open-source Signal protocol.

In this comprehensive guide, we will cover recommended methods for installing Discord across Windows and Linux systems. Going beyond the graphical installers, we look at the command line and automation approaches favored by system administrators, developers and technology enthusiasts.

Why Secure Communication Matters

During remote work or e-learning, your conversations, data and credentials are constantly at risk of compromise from bad actors. Just as enterprises invest heavily in endpoint security, encryption and identity services for their workforce, individuals must also consider threats like:

  • Malware or viruses spying through unsecured apps
  • Snooping while connected to public WiFi hotspots
  • Identity theft if credentials are reused or leaked
  • Phishing attempts targeted at private data

Platforms like Discord take your privacy seriously with voice/video data transmitted directly between endpoints without storage. Text chat supports end-to-end encryption for DMs and secret channels. Globally distributed server infrastructure prevents any one party from accessing conversations.

For classroom servers, teacher-only administrator permissions allow governance of channels, content moderation and removal of disruptive members. Student data like names, emails and messages are kept private from unauthorized access.

Whether collaborating with co-workers or relaxing with friends in your personal time, Discord aims to provide a virtual place to hang out securely.

Installing the Discord Desktop App on Windows

Installing Discord on a Windows PC is simple whether you use the graphical installer or automated command line method. Here are the steps to get started:

System Requirements

To use Discord, make sure your Windows machine meets these minimum specs:

  • Windows 7 SP1 or higher (Windows 8, 10, 11)
  • Intel Core i3-2100 or AMD FX 4350 CPU
  • 4 GB RAM
  • DirectX v9.0c compatible graphics card
  • At least 500 MB storage space

Newer Windows versions like 10 or 11 running on relatively modern hardware should have no issues. Discord works even on lower powered machines like the Raspberry Pi.

Install using Graphical Wizard

  1. Download installer from Discord‘s website.
  2. Launch the .exe and proceed through the setup prompts.
  3. By default installs under C:\users\[your user]\AppData\Local\Discord.
  4. Launcher added to Start Menu for opening Discord.

Automated Command Line Install

For centralized deployment across multiple computers, administrators can automate installs silently via:

discord.exe /S

This will install without needing to click through prompts. Additional parameters exist to customize like /D= to set install directory.

Registry keys are written to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Discord and data stored under AppData folder mentioned earlier.

Installing Discord on Linux from the Command Line

While Windows enjoys a dedicated Discord desktop app, Linux users can choose from the distro-agnostic AppImage or popular Snap package. Both offer quick headless install ideal for servers, Docker containers, and automation.

AppImage – Works on Any Linux Distro

Download the .AppImage installer from Discord‘s Linux download page matching your system architecture. Then make the file executable and launch:

chmod +x discord-*.AppImage 

As AppImage bundles all the required libraries, Discord will launch immediately without needing to install any dependencies.

Snap – For Ubuntu, Debian and More

Snap packages enjoy tight integration on Ubuntu, Debian, Linux Mint and other distributions built atop them. Install the snapd service if you don‘t already have it:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install snapd

Then install the Discord snap available in distro repos:

sudo snap install discord

Launch via discord &. Snap handles auto-updates in the background when new Discord versions are released.

Initial Discord Account Configuration

Once launched, Discord will open your browser to complete a few initial steps to start chatting:

  1. Register for new account or use Google/Facebook SSO login
  2. Set a strong password and enable Two-factor authentication
  3. Customize your profile by adding a bio, avatar, chat banners
  4. Adjust notification preferences under User Settings

Two-factor authentication via apps like Google Authenticator or Authy adds an extra security layer, requiring your phone to signin. Be sure to back up recovery codes in case you lose device access later.

Start Chatting and Customize Activity Status

The + icon lets you join existing servers via invite link or create new ones. Servers contain multiple text and voice channels for hanging out casually or focused topics.

Toggle your activity status while on Discord to: online, idle, do not disturb, invisible mode and offline. Statuses sync across mobile and desktop apps.

Key Discord Features for Every Community

Once setup, it‘s easy meeting new friends in public servers or creating your own private space. Discord packs great features like:

  • Media integration – YouTube watch parties, Reddit chat feed channels
  • Chat bots – 100,000+ bot options. Code your own in JavaScript/Python
  • Granular user roles and permissions – Manage access by person
  • Easy voice chat – Low latency for natural conversations
  • Message search – Find old images/files exchanged

For server administrators, convenient moderation tools help govern communities by restricting spam, banning violating individuals, deleting objectionable message history if needed to adhere to codes of conduct.

Stay Secure While Connecting with Friends

That wraps up our guide to getting Discord installed across popular desktop platforms like Windows 10 and Ubuntu Linux. Whether opting for graphical simplicity or automated CLI methods, Discord makes it easy to get chatting securely.

We invite readers to join Discord’s own official server housing over 600k members geeking out over gaming, making bots, APIs, moderated community management and more.

Update us in the comments if this guide helped you get Discord running smoothly or if you have alternative install tips to share!