Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Wednesday, January 22, 2020 at 22:51

elementary is a very popular modern operating system even non-technical people want to use it. It's not strange if some of them felt difficulty in downloading the OS. But it is highly beneficial to help them because by doing so we have more people using it and big chance also more donations can go to empower the development. Beyond that, I saw the internet at the moment lacks step-by-step tutorial to do this important thing. For that reason, I make this simple guide in how to download elementary OS for new users by using standard and alternative methods everyone may choose. I hope this article helps you a lot and let's go use elementary!

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  • Free storage space 2GB or more. 
  • Internet access.
  • Web browser.
  • BitTorrent client program, if you want alternative way to download.

1. Where To Download

Go to and you should see "Pay What You Want" section with "Purchase" button. That is the download area. Please note that I write this in January 2020 when elementary reached version 5.1 "Hera" so all screenshots here are from this time and some may change in the future.

Picture 1.1
(Download section on elementary OS official website)

2. Download It

There are two ways to download, either by donating or not. For most people, you can use not donating. For people who love to help fund the development, go ahead by donating. However, even if you download without donating, you can still donate to the project by Funding Page or purchase merchandises by the Store.

Without donating:
  1. Select custom price
  2. Type 0
  3. Click download button
  4. The dialog 'Choose a Download' appears and click 'Download' button.
  5. You download an ISO image file
  6. Wait some time as the file size is big
Picture 2.1
(The dialog 'Choose a Download')

With donating:
  1. Select $10, $20, or $30 from options available
  2. Alternatively, select custom and type amount you wish, for example $5 or $100
  3. Click 'Purchase elementary OS' button
  4. Wait a minute
  5. A small dialog appears from elementary, Inc. asking for your debit/credit card information
  6. Enter your card information
  7. Click "Pay" button
  8. The dialog 'Choose a Download' appears and click Download button.
  9. You download an ISO image file

Picture 2.2
(This payment form is provided by Stripe Checkout service --an alternative to PayPal-- and if you want there is a video explanation)

3. Wait

With a standard broadband connection, for example 5MB/s, the download process should finish in under 10 minutes. However, internet access is sometimes slow so wait patiently until it's finished completely.

Picture 3.1
(Firefox web browser downloading the ISO file)

4. Result

The file downloaded should be named elementaryos-[version]-[stable]-[release_date].iso with size no less than 1GB. Up to this step, you downloaded elementary OS successfully. Congratulations!

Picture 4.1
(The operating system stored as a file with .iso extension just like any other OSes)

5. Alternative Download

Technically, above mentioned way of downloading is called "HTTP Download". That is standard. But there is an alternative download method, called "BitTorrent Download", that is far more faster and reliable, you can resume download at any time and make sure the file downloaded will never be corrupted. To download in BitTorrent way, you need a BitTorrent client program, for example Transmission (Ubuntu, Mint, Manjaro) or KTorrent (Kubuntu), both are free software. If you are using Windows or macOS, I recommend Transmission. If you want alternative method instead, follow these:
  1. Go to
  2. Repeat above steps to download until 'Choose a Download' dialog appears
  3. Click 'U' button next to 'Download' button (it is called 'Torrent Magnet Link')
  4. Your BitTorrent client appears with folder options to store the file
  5. Click OK
  6. Your download starts in the BitTorrent client window
Picture 5.1
(The dialog 'Choose a Download' with a torrent magnet link button)

Picture 5.2
(KTorrent, a bittorrent client program, downloading the same elementary OS but with faster speed)

Happy downloading!

Further Readings

This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.