Balsamiq is one of the best tools for quick wireframes creation. It allows you to efficiently and quickly create mockups that give you an idea of how design elements fit in the page.
Some years ago there was a package available for the most popular Linux distributions, but since Adobe dropped support for Linux and Balsamiq is built on top of Adobe Air, nowadays they don’t support Linux neither.
As you can see from the downloads page of Balsamiq, though, it luckily works well with wine.
Install Balsamiq with WINE
First things first: install wine.
sudo apt-get install wine
Now, let’s proceed with an easy step-by-step guide.
- Download the Balsamiq Bundle that includes Adobe Air (if the link does not work, head on to Balsamic Downloads and download the version With Adobe Air bundled)
- Open a terminal, unzip the bundle and move it to
/opt(change the Downloads directory name according to your setup)
cd Downloads unzip Balsamiq* sudo mv Balsamiq* /opt
- To make life easier, rename the .exe to simply
cd /opt/Balsamiq_Mockups_3/ mv Balsamiq\ Mockups\ 3.exe balsamiq.exe
- Now you can run Balsamiq Mockups by running it with wine
Add Balsamiq as an application
The last optional step can save you a lot of time in launching Balsamiq, because it saves you the hassle of writing the command in point 4 above every time you want to launch it (and remembering the Balsamiq executable location). This simply consists in creating a new desktop entry for Balsamiq, which will add it to the applications list of your operating system.
Create the file
~/.local/share/applications/Balsamiq.desktop with the following content:
[Desktop Entry] Encoding=UTF-8 Name=Balsamiq Mockups Icon=/opt/Balsamiq_Mockups_3/icons/mockups_ico_48.png Exec=wine /opt/Balsamiq_Mockups_3/balsamiq.exe Type=Application Categories=Graphics; MimeType=application/x-xdg-protocol-tg;x-scheme-handler/tg;
If you are on Ubuntu with Unity, you can add the following lines too:
StartupNotify=false StartupWMClass=balsamiq.exe X-UnityGenerated=true
Now, just save and have a look at your Dash or Activity Panel to see if it works.