Microsoft to Linux developers: We want your help to bring Edge browser to Linux

Microsoft might build Edge for Linux because doing so could attract web developers.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer on

Microsoft has already said there's nothing technically stopping it from bringing its Chromium-based Edge browser to one-time Windows foe Linux. But the company now appears to be actually doing it and is seeking out feedback from Linux developers to help with "some assumptions". 

"We on the @MSEdgeDev team are fleshing out requirements to bring Edge to Linux, and we need your help w/ some assumptions," wrote Sean Larkin, a member of Microsoft's Edge team.

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"If you're a dev who depends on Linux for dev, testing, personal browsing, please take a second to fill out this survey," he added.

Chrome, of course, is already available for Linux, so Microsoft should be able to deliver Chromium-based Edge to Linux distributions with minimal fuss.

However, so far Microsoft has only committed to bringing Edge to Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and macOS. It is building the browser independently of Windows 10, which it ships with.  

But in June Microsoft Edge developers said there are "no technical blockers to keep us from creating Linux binaries" and that it is "definitely something we'd like to do down the road".

Despite Chrome's availability on Linux, the Edge team noted there is still work to be done on the installer, updaters, user sync, and bug fixes, before it could be something to commit to properly. Microsoft rolled out previews of the new browser in June.  

The developer survey is hosted on Microsoft's Forms for Office platform and targets people who use Linux as a device for web development and testing. 

Microsoft is keen to know the flavor of Linux that developers are using for web development, whether it's Redhat, Debian, Ubuntu, openSUSE, Fedora, or another distribution. 

It also wants to know whether web developers use multiple distributions of Linux for different development scenarios and how users would expect to install Edge on Linux devices, such as through a native package manager or an installer. 

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And Microsoft is keen to understand whether developers use a browser on Linux for automated testing, web development, personal browser or "other purposes". 

Despite Microsoft's apparent interest in supporting Edge for Linux, some Linux users aren't that interested, partly because there's no shortage of browsers that already support it. 

Besides Chrome, there's already Chromium-based Opera, Vivaldi and Falkon, as well as WebKit-based GNOME Web, and of course Mozilla Firefox.  

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