Installing Ubiquiti Unifi Controller on Debian Linux

The Ubiquiti UniFi controller is pre-packaged for installation on Debian and Ubuntu.


Download the latest version from

At the time of writing this is “UniFi v4.8.15 Controller for Debian/Ubuntu Linux”

Using the command prompt:

cd ~/Downloads

Install the downloaded file:

sudo dpkg -i unify_sysvinit_all.deb

This will fail due to missing dependancies, fix with

sudo apt-get -f install

Then re-install with

sudo dpkg -i unify_sysvinit_all.deb

Check the Unify service is running:

sudo service unify status

Screen Shot 2016-04-30 at 07.13.10

You should now be able to access the controller from a web browser on the local machine (ignore security warnings due to self-signed certificate):


After completing the initial setup wizard you will be able to log in to the controller web interface as usual:

Screen Shot 2016-04-30 at 07.14.11


Installing Google Chrome on Debian Linux with Remote Desktop

Login as a normal user (who  as sudo rights).

Open the default Debian Iceweasle web browser and navigate to the Chrome Download site:


Click Download

Select 64bit .deb (For Debian/Ubuntu)


Click Accept and Install

This will actually download the installation file


Choose to save the file.

Open Terminal

cd ~/Downloads

sudo dpkg -i google-chrome-stable_current_amd64.deb

This will fail.. so next get the missing dependancies with:

sudo apt-get -f install

Now repeat:

sudo dpkg -i google-chrome-stable_current_amd64.deb

Chrome will now be installed (note that cannot use the browser when logged in as root??)


Install Chrome Remote Desktop on Debian

Open the Chrome browser and sign in to the account.

Add the “Chrome Remote Desktop” app into Chrome if not already installed.

Download the Chrome Remote Desktop from:

Open Terminal

cd ~/Downloads

sudo dpkg -i ~/Downloads/chrome-remote-desktop_current_amd64.deb

This will probably fail due to missing dependancies, fix with:

sudo apt-get -f install
sudo dpkg -i ~/Downloads/chrome-remote-desktop_current_amd64.deb

Next we need to create a file that defines the graphical environment. I’m using LXDE.

Create a file called .chrome-remote-desktop-session in your home directory.

cd ~
nano .chrome-remote-desktop-session

Add the following:

exec /usr/bin/startlxde

See for details of getting other desktop environment settings.

Reboot the computer.

Open the Chrome Browser a remote Desktop

Click the “My Computers” -> “Access your own computers from anywhere” -> “Get started”

Scroll down to the bottom of the page and you should see “Enable remote connections”


Click and enter the remote access PIN number.

You will now be able to access the machine from any other Chrome Remote Desktop app when signed into your Google Chrome account.


Installing Debian in a VirtualBox Virtual Machine

These are the basic steps need to install Debian Virtual Machine running in Virtualbox. May 2016.

Note: This VM will be used for hosting the Ubiquiti Networks Unifi Controller software – so the VM hard drive is bigger than generally required.

Install Debian

Create the Virtual Machine with a virtual drive of 64GB (required by the Mongo DB used by Unifi – see another post about this).

Download the latest Debian ISO – in this case debian-8.2.0-amd64-netinst.iso

Mount the Debian ISO as a CD withing the storage manager of the VM.

Set the LAN adapter to be BRIDGED

Boot the machine and proceed with the install with the following settings:

Hostname: unifyNode

Create user & passwords : root, jon

Partition: Guided – use entire disk

Package manager: United Kingdom /

Software Selection: Debian Desktop environment, LXDE, SSH Server, standard system utilities.

Install the GRUB boot loader on the VBOX drive (/dev/sda (ata-VBOX_HARDDISK_xxxxx)

Boot Debian and Install Update

Login as root

apt-get update

apt-get upgrade


Add user to the sudoer list

# User privilege specification

Next Up… Installing Chrome with Remote Desktop on Debian Linux,

Installing Ubiquiti Unifi Controller on Debian Linux