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Install Lens Desktop#

Lens Desktop is lightweight and simple to install on all major platforms. You can find all installation options on the official Lens website.

System requirements#

Before installing Lens Desktop, verify that your computer meets the system requirements.

Minimum hardware requirements:

  • 2 GHz or faster processor
  • 1 GB of RAM
  • 1 GB of disk space

Supported operating systems:

  • macOS
  • Windows
  • Linux


Lens Desktop may work on operating systems that are beyond their end-of-life date. However, we recommend staying on supported versions of the operating system. See details about support lifecycles of various operating systems on

Install Lens Desktop on macOS#

  1. On, select and download a suitable .dmg file.
  2. Double-click the .dmg file and drag to the Applications folder, making it available in Launchpad.
  3. Control-click the Lens Desktop icon and choose Options > Keep in Dock.


Lens Desktop requires entry to Keychain Access to securely store the user credentials. Authorize Lens Desktop to store your credentials in Keychain Access.

Install Lens Desktop on Windows#

  1. On, download the Lens Desktop installer for Windows.
  2. Install Lens Desktop by running the Lens-Setup-<version>.exe installer. The default Lens Desktop installation path is C:\users\<username>\AppData\Local\Programs\Lens.

Silent installation#

Lens Desktop supports silent installation. The silent mode allows installing the application without user interaction through command-line parameters.

To complete silent installation, open the folder with the installer and run the Lens.Setup.<release-id>.exe file using the following options:

Parameter Description
/S Required to specify. Specifies the silent mode.
/allusers Installs Lens Desktop for all users of the computer. Requires the Administrator user to perform the action.
/currentuser Installs Lens Desktop for the current user. This option is default, and you can skip specifying it.
/D="path" Specifies the installation directory.

To install Lens Desktop with the default parameters, run:

Lens.Setup.<release-id>.exe /S

Lens.Setup.<release-id>.exe /S /currentuser
The application can be found by the following path:

To install Lens Desktop for all users of the computer, run:

Lens.Setup.<release-id>.exe /S /allusers
The application can be found by the following path:

C:\Program Files\Lens

Installation options on Linux#

Lens Desktop for Linux is available for the AMD64 (x86_64) architecture. You can choose from the following installation options:

  • Debian (APT) repository
  • RPM repository
  • AppImage file
  • .snap file


For the Debian and RPM repository options the name of the installed Lens Desktop executable is now lens-desktop

Install Lens Desktop from the APT repository#

  1. Get the Lens Desktop public security key and add it to your keyring:

    curl -fsSL | gpg --dearmor | sudo tee /usr/share/keyrings/lens-archive-keyring.gpg > /dev/null
  2. Add the Lens Desktop repo to your /etc/apt/sources.list.d directory.

    Specify the stable channel:

    echo "deb [arch=amd64 signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/lens-archive-keyring.gpg] stable main" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/lens.list > /dev/null

    Specify the bionic channel:

    echo "deb [arch=amd64 signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/lens-archive-keyring.gpg] bionic main" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/lens.list > /dev/null
  3. Install or update Lens Desktop:

    sudo apt update
    sudo apt install lens
  4. Run Lens Desktop:


Install Lens Desktop from the RPM repository#

  1. Configure your system to use the Lens Desktop RPM repository with the DNF package manager:

    sudo dnf config-manager --add-repo

    If DNF is not available, use the YUM package manager:

    sudo yum-config-manager --add-repo
  2. Install or update Lens Desktop using DNF:

    sudo dnf install lens

    If DNF is not available, use the YUM package manager:

    sudo yum install lens
  3. Run Lens Desktop:

  1. Configure your system to use the Lens Desktop RPM repository:

    sudo yum-config-manager --add-repo
  2. Install or update Lens Desktop.

    sudo yum install lens-el7
  3. Run Lens Desktop:


Install Lens Desktop with Snap#

  1. Optional. Download and install snap. Find Linux distributions that do not have pre-installed snap and installation instructions in Snap tutorials: Installing snapd.
  2. Install the Lens Desktop snap:

    sudo snap install kontena-lens --classic

Install Lens Desktop from the AppImage#

  1. Download the AppImage file.
  2. Navigate to the directory where you have the file downloaded and right-click the AppImage file and select Properties > Permissions.
  3. Select the Allow executing file as a program check box.


    Some file managers might offer to unselect the Is executable check box or other similar actions.

  4. In the Linux command line, navigate to the directory where you have the file downloaded and type the following commands:

    chmod +x <file-name.AppImage>

Configure protocol handling#

Protocol handling enables external programs to open Lens Desktop. For AppImage or other manually installed Lens Desktop instances, protocol handling must be enabled separately. Protocol handling is not required to run Lens Desktop but some Lens extensions may rely on it.


It assumed that your Linux distribution uses xdg-open and the xdg-* suite of programs for determining which application can handle custom URIs.

  1. Create a file called lens.desktop in one of the following directories:



  2. In lens.desktop, specify the absolute path to the unpacked Lens executable. Specify other parameters as follows:

    [Desktop Entry]
    Exec=<path/to/executable> %U
    Comment=Lens - The Kubernetes IDE
  3. Set the default handler:

    xdg-settings set default-url-scheme-handler lens lens.desktop

    If the operation exits with the 0 code, then Lens Desktop is set up to handle lens:// URIs.

Updating Lens Desktop#

Lens Desktop supports auto-updating. When a new release is available, a notification appears in the application.

In-app auto-updates are available only for exe, dmg, and AppImage installations. The Snap instances are automatically updated through the snapd daemon. Update other Lens Desktop distributions manually.

See Lens Desktop release notes for more information about features, maintenance updates, and other updates.

Backup and restore data#

When updating to a major Lens Desktop version, user data such as clusters, preferences, and other configurations migrates to new data structures. However, we recommend you to back up user data. Find default user data locations below:

OS Path
macOS ~/Library/Application Support/Lens/
Windows %APPDATA%\Lens\
Linux ~/.config/Lens/ or $XDG_CONFIG_HOME/Lens

Launch Lens Desktop