Installing the signal-cli on the Raspberry Pi.

At the time of writing this, the signal-cli is at version: 0.11.3 with the libsignal-client being at version: 0.20.0.
The OS that I use is DietPi.

Automatic install

For an automatic install, I provide the following script:

You can use it by running:
sudo wget
Notice! Before running scripts from the Internet, check their code.
cat ./
Now you can run the script:
sudo chmod +x ./ && sudo ./

Manual install


You need to check the size of your /tmp directory with the following command:
df -h

There will be a line that looks like this:
tmpfs 1.0G 1.0M 1023M 1% /tmp

Notice that is reads 1.0G. This is too small as the installation requires about 1.25G.

You can expand the size of your /tmp directory with this command:
sudo mount -o remount,size=2G /tmp/

required tools

For this guide, curl and zip are required. Install them with:
sudo apt install curl zip

(If there is an error try to run sudo apt update)

Basic install

First, we need to set the Version of the signal-cli we are installing. You can find the Version code here.

Set the signal-cli version with:
export VERSION=0.11.3.
After that, we download the signal-cli version:
curl --proto '=https' --tlsv1.2 -o signal-cli-"${VERSION}"-Linux.tar.gz"${VERSION}"/signal-cli-"${VERSION}"-Linux.tar.gz
and unpack it to /opt:
sudo tar xf signal-cli-"${VERSION}"-Linux.tar.gz -C /opt. After extracting the code remove the file:
sudo rm signal-cli-"${VERSION}"-Linux.tar.gz
Finally, we link it to /usr/local/bin so we can use the signal-cli:
sudo ln -sf /opt/signal-cli-"${VERSION}"/bin/signal-cli /usr/local/bin/.

As the last step for the basic install, we install the required Java version:
sudo apt install openjdk-17-jdk


If we try to run signal-cli now, then it will fail! (But only if your system type is not x86_64)

Building the

To fix the problem, we need to build the “native lib for libsignal”.

Notice! If you have a 1GB Raspberry Pi then please read #1-gb-ram.


First, we need to install some dependencies:


sudo apt install protobuf-compiler clang libclang-dev cmake make


sudo curl -sSf | sudo sh -s -- --default-toolchain nightly-aarch64-unknown-linux-gnu -y

Build libsignal

Let’s create a temporary directory to store files:
sudo mkdir /tmp/signal-cli-install && cd /tmp/signal-cli-install

Before starting to download the libsignal source-code, we need to find the matching version code:
export LIBVERSION=$(find /opt/signal-cli-"${VERSION}"/lib/ -maxdepth 1 -mindepth 1 -name 'libsignal-client-*' | sed -E 's/\/opt\/signal-cli-[0-9]{1,}.[0-9]{1,}.[0-9]{1,}\/lib\/libsignal-client-*//g' | sed -E 's/.jar//g')

After that, we download the source code:
sudo curl --proto '=https' --tlsv1.2 -o /tmp/signal-cli-install/v"${LIBVERSION}".tar.gz"${LIBVERSION}".tar.gz

And now we need to unpack the downloaded code:
sudo tar xf /tmp/signal-cli-install/v"${LIBVERSION}".tar.gz -C /tmp/signal-cli-install/ && mv libsignal-"${LIBVERSION}" libsignal

After extracting the code remove the archive as it is no longer needed: sudo rm /tmp/signal-cli-install/v"${LIBVERSION}".tar.gz

Change into the java directory of the downloaded code:
cd libsignal/java

We disable some android stuff as we don`t want to build for android:
sudo sed -i "s/include ':android'//" /tmp/signal-cli-install/libsignal/java/settings.gradle

1 GB Ram

While building libsignal I ran into a problem with the ram usage on the Raspberry Pi 3b, because eventually, the 1 GB of ram would be full. This would result in a locked-up Pi that I had to hard reset. We can work around this problem by limiting the CPU usage to 1 Core.
(I don’t know if a 2 GB Raspberry Pi 4 can run all 4 Cores.)

sudo sed -i "s/cargo build /cargo build -j ${CORE_COUNT} /" /tmp/signal-cli-install/libsignal/java/

Update 08.10.2022

I could not get libsignal to compile on a Raspberry Pi with 1GB of ram.

Starting the Build

We can start the build with: sudo /tmp/signal-cli-install/libsignal/java/ desktop

We need to remove the bundled from /opt/signal-cli-${VERSION}/lib/libsignal-client-*.jar:
sudo zip -d /opt/signal-cli-${VERSION}/lib/libsignal-client-*.jar
and add our own:
sudo zip /opt/signal-cli-${VERSION}/lib/libsignal-client-*.jar /tmp/signal-cli-install/libsignal/target/release/

Since Version 0.11.3 the replacing is not working for me, because of that we add the to the default Java library path.
For that create it if it dosen`t exist: sudo mkdir -p /usr/java/packages/lib
and finally copy the file to that folder:
sudo cp /tmp/signal-cli-install/libsignal/target/release/ /usr/java/packages/lib

Now we can remove the temporary files:
sudo rm -r /tmp/signal-cli-install

We should set the permissions for the new files:
sudo chown root:root /usr/java/packages/lib/
sudo chmod 755 /usr/java/packages/lib/
sudo chmod 755 -R /opt/signal-cli-${VERSION}
sudo chown root:root -R /opt/signal-cli-${VERSION}

Now we should be able to use the signal-cli command with no problems.

Finally the signal-cli should report its version with: signal-cli –version`