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8 Best Screen Recorders For Linux In 2017

Brief: In this article, we list you the best screen recorders for Linux. This list also includes software that let you record your Linux desktop as gif.

Often we need to record our desktop screen for various purposes, like broadcasting gaming session online, making video tutorials etc. Today, we are going to present various screen recording applications for Linux.

This list is divided into two parts:

  • Recording screen as video
  • Recording screen as gif

All the softwares mentioned here are free and open source (FOSS).

Before we see the list of best screen recorders, I would like to mention asciinema. It’s a desktop tool that lets you record your terminal session and uploads to its website. You can grab the URL and send it to friends. Best thing is that the commands in recorded terminal session can be copied. That helps a lot if you used plenty of commands, no need of manual entering those commands.

For clarification, these applications are not listed in any specific order and the features mentioned here are not all-inclusive. The features mentioned are compiled either from their respective official websites or from my personal experience using them.

Best Screen Recorders for Linux

1. Kazam

Kazam is a minimal and nifty tool for screencasting. It includes screenshot support too. Kazam is most suitable for beginners and for getting the task done quickly without going too much into various options.

Kazam Interface

Main Features

  • Simple and compact user interface
  • Supports multiple video output format
  • Audio recording from suitable source (microphone or speaker)
  • Support for recording a single window or selected screen area
  • Delay timer support


  • Simple and minimal, easy to use.


  • Very few options for tweaking configuration settings
  • Lack of WebCam recording support

Installation on Ubuntu

Open a terminal window and enter the following command:

sudo apt install kazam

N.B. The latest version — which adds a bunch more features to Kazam — is not available through the official PPA or Ubuntu Universal repositories.


2. Open Broadcaster Software Studio

OBS Studio is, without doubt, the most feature-rich and advanced screencasting application available for Linux.

OBS Studio Interface

Main Features

  • Multiple Scenes to switch between seamlessly via custom transitions
  • Filters for video sources
  • Audio mixer with filters
  • Powerful and easy to use configuration options
  • Streamlined Settings panel for tweaking configurations
  • Live streaming support


  • Everything you will possibly need is within this single application


  • You’ll need a while to figure out its terminologies (…but it’s worth it)

Installation on Ubuntu

OBS Studio is available for Ubuntu via PPA. You can enter the following commands in the terminal for installing it:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:obsproject/obs-studio
sudo apt update
sudo apt install obs-studio

Open Broadcast Software

3. SimpleScreenRecorder

SimpleScreenRecorder — as the name implies — is a simple application for screen recording on Linux. Its interface is Qt-based.

SimpleScreenRecorder Interface

Main Features

  • Supports multiple video output format
  • Audio recording from suitable source
  • Support for recording selected screen area
  • Provides statistics while recording
  • Live preview while recording
  • Optimized to work smoothly on slow machines
  • Hotkey support


  • Sufficient tweaking options to fine tune the output video.


  • User interface is not very appealing
  • No built-in support for WebCam recording

Installation on Ubuntu

SimpleScreenRecorder is available for Ubuntu via PPA. Run the following commands on after another in a terminal window:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:maarten-baert/simplescreenrecorder
sudo apt update
sudo apt install simplescreenrecorder


4. recordMyDesktop

recordMyDesktop is mainly a command-line tool for screen recording written in C. It has two separate graphical user interface based on GTK and QT4.

recordMyDesktop Interface

Main Features

  • Lightweight tool
  • Support for recording a single window
  • Video output tweaking options


  • You can also use it from command-line with recordmydesktop command.


  • Interface is not quite polished
  • No WebCam recording feature
  • No options for alternative video output formats

Installation on Ubuntu

recordMyDesktop is available for installation via official Ubuntu repository. Just run the following command:

sudo apt install gtk-recordmydesktop


5. VokoScreen

VokoScreen is an easy to use screencast creator. This simplicity could earn it the label of one of the best desktop recorders for Linux, in my opinion.

VokoScreen Interface

Main Features

  • Supports multiple video output format
  • Audio recording from suitable source
  • Support for recording a single window or selected screen area
  • WebCam preview support
  • Delay timer support
  • Hotkey support


  • Various preference options for tweaking the video output


  • User interface can be better

Installation on Ubuntu

VokoScreen is available via official Ubuntu repository. For installing, enter the following command in terminal:

sudo apt install vokoscreen


6. ScreenStudio

ScreenStudio is a cross-platform screen recording application written in Java.

ScreenStudio Interface

Main Features

  • Supports multiple video output format
  • Audio recording from suitable source
  • Stream support for various services like – Hitbox, Twitch.tv etc.
  • Various advanced configuration options
  • WebCam recording support
  • Overlay layer support while recording (image and text layers)


  • Being a cross-platform application, you can use it everywhere.


  • Dependency size is rather large — Requires JRE 8.0

Installation on Ubuntu

ScreenStudio can be installed on Ubuntu from PPA. Enter the following commands in a terminal for installation:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:soylent-tv/screenstudio
sudo apt update
sudo apt install screenstudio


Best Linux software to record screen as GIF

7. Peek

Peek is a simple tool for recording animated gif from your desktop screen.

Peek Interface

Main Features

  • Framerate setting
  • Delay timer support


  • Modern and slick interface


  • Currently, only Linux with X11 is supported (which most of us are currently using)

Installation on Ubuntu

For installation, DEB packages are available on its GitHub project’s release page. You can also install it from command-line with the following commands:

wget https://github.com/phw/peek/releases/download/v0.8.0/peek-0.8.0-Linux.deb
sudo apt install libsdl1.2debian ffmpeg libavdevice-ffmpeg56
sudo dpkg -i peek-0.8.0-Linux.deb


8. Gifine

Gifine is a tool for recording and stitching together a short gifs or videos.

Gifine Interface

Main Features

  • Supports both GIF and MP4 video output.
  • Supports editing and trimming the output before saving


  • Provides additional features than Peek


  • Interface is not as nice as Peek

Installation on Ubuntu

Installing Gifine is a bit lengthy process. Open a terminal window and carefully enter the following commands for installing Gifine on Ubuntu:

git clone --depth 1 https://github.com/lolilolicon/xrectsel.git
cd xrectsel
./bootstrap && ./configure
sudo make install
sudo apt install gifsicle luarocks libgirepository1.0-dev
sudo luarocks install --server=http://luarocks.org/dev gifine

And you are done. For running Gifine, enter the following command:



Your choice?

Did I miss out your favorite screen recorder application? Which desktop recorder do you use in Linux? Do share your views. And please do take a moment to share this article. It does help us 🙂


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