DebianDebian Based

How To Install Zsh on Debian 12

Install Zsh on Debian 12

In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Zsh on Debian 12. The Z Shell (Zsh) is a powerful command-line interpreter for Unix operating systems. It offers significant improvements over its predecessors, such as Bash, with features designed to enhance user productivity and interactive use. Zsh combines the best aspects of various other shells, including Bash, ksh, and tcsh, offering extensive customization options, themes, and plugins.

This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of Zsh on a Debian 12 (Bookworm).


  • A server running one of the following operating systems: Debian 12 (Bookworm).
  • It’s recommended that you use a fresh OS install to prevent any potential issues.
  • SSH access to the server (or just open Terminal if you’re on a desktop).
  • An active internet connection. You’ll need an internet connection to download the necessary packages and dependencies for Zsh.
  • A user account with sudo privileges to execute administrative commands.

Install Zsh on Debian 12 Bookworm

Step 1. Before installing any new software, it’s crucial to update your Debian system to ensure compatibility and security. Open your terminal and enter the following commands:

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade

Step 2. Installing Zsh on Debian 12.

With your system up to date, you can now install Zsh using Debian’s package manager, apt. Run the following command:

sudo apt install zsh

After installation, you can verify that Zsh has been installed correctly by checking its version. This also confirms that Zsh is accessible through your terminal:

zsh --version

If you’re satisfied with Zsh and want to make it your default shell, use the chsh command. You’ll need to log out and log back in for the changes to take effect:

chsh -s $(which zsh)

Step 3. Customizing the Zsh Environment.

To customize Zsh, edit the .zshrc file in your home directory. Some common customizations include:

  • Enabling Plugins: Add plugins like syntax highlighting, auto-suggestions, etc.
  • Setting Themes: Choose from various prompt themes to customize the look and feel.
  • Aliases: Create aliases for commonly used commands.
  • Environment Variables: Set environment variables such as $PATH.

There are also helpful frameworks like Oh My Zsh that make customizing and managing Zsh easier.

Congratulations! You have successfully installed Zsh. Thanks for using this tutorial to install the latest version of the Zsh on Debian 12 Bookworm. For additional help or useful information, we recommend you check the official Zsh website.

VPS Manage Service Offer
If you don’t have time to do all of this stuff, or if this is not your area of expertise, we offer a service to do “VPS Manage Service Offer”, starting from $10 (Paypal payment). Please contact us to get the best deal!


r00t is a seasoned Linux system administrator with a wealth of experience in the field. Known for his contributions to, r00t has authored numerous tutorials and guides, helping users navigate the complexities of Linux systems. His expertise spans across various Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, CentOS, and Debian. r00t's work is characterized by his ability to simplify complex concepts, making Linux more accessible to users of all skill levels. His dedication to the Linux community and his commitment to sharing knowledge makes him a respected figure in the field.
Back to top button