Extension Manager: Search And Install GNOME Shell Extensions Without Using A Web Browser

Extension Manager is a new, unofficial application to browse and install GNOME Shell extensions from your desktop, without having to use a web browser. 

Besides allowing users to search and install extensions from extensions.gnome.org, the tool can also enable or disable extensions (and display a list of installed extensions), access the extension settings, and uninstall extensions.

The application is very new, having its first (0.1.0) release only a couple of days ago, so it's still lacking in features. 

[[Edit]] Since writing the article, the application has received a few updates which have added the missing features I mentioned in the original article. The tool now supports updating GNOME Shell extensions, though it's important to note that on GNOME 40 and certain older versions of GNOME 41 and 42 require having the official GNOME Extensions app installed to be able to update extensions using Extension Manager. The application now also lists more than the first 10 search results.

The application also includes support for extension screenshots, ratings, and comments.

Other features include:

  • shows extension details, supported GNOME Shell versions, etc.
  • shows extension errors to the user
  • allows installing unsupported extensions
  • handle 'out of date' extensions
  • adaptive, mobile-friendly user interface
  • supports the new gnome-extensions:// URI scheme

Extensions Manager solves the issue of having to install a browser extension and connector, and use a supported web browser to install GNOME Shell extensions. For example, using Chromium or Firefox installed from Flathub or the Snap Store can't be used to install GNOME Shell extensions from the official website as far as I know, at least right now.

How to install Extension Manager for GNOME Shell

Arch Linux / Manjaro users can install Extension Manager from AUR.

[[Edit]] The tool is now available on Flathub, so it can be easily installed on most Linux distributions. If you haven't installed Flatpak and added the Flathub repository already, see the instructions from this page.

Debian 10 and Unstable / Ubuntu 22.04, 22.10 and 23.04 (and Linux distributions based on it, like Pop!_OS) can install Extension Manager from the official repositories, using the following command:

sudo apt install gnome-shell-extension-manager