Neurodesk App

A cross-platform desktop application for Neurodesk: The easiest way to use Neurodesktop

Minimum System Requirements

  1. At least 5GB free space for neurodesktop base image
  2. Docker requirements.

Installing Docker

The Neurodesk App requires Docker to be installed on your computer. If you already have Docker installed, you can skip this step.

After installation, open a terminal (Linux/macOS) or command prompt (Windows) and run the following command to verify that Docker is working correctly:

docker --version
docker run hello-world

Downloading Neurodesk App

Installing Neurodesk App

If you have an existing Neurodesk App installation, please first uninstall it by following the uninstall instructions here. Then, install the app for your system:

  • Debian, Ubuntu Linux Installer: sudo apt install -f ./NeurodeskApp-Setup-Debian.deb
  • Red Hat, Fedora, SUSE Linux Installer: sudo rpm -i NeurodeskApp-Setup-Fedora.rpm
  • Arch-based package via AUR: yay neurodesk (or follow instructions here)
  • macOS Installer: Double click the downloaded dmg file, then drag the to the Applications folder; for starting the app: Right click on the and select “Open”. For Apple Silicon systems (M1/M2): Make sure to enable Rosetta support in the docker settings for best performance!
  • Windows Installer: Double click the downloaded exe file; Accept to install from an unknown publisher with Yes; then accept the license agreement and click finish at the end.

Launching Neurodesk App

The Neurodesk App can be launched directly from your operating system’s application menu, or by running the neurodeskapp command in the command line.

Note that the Neurodesk App will set the File Browser’s root directory based on the launch method used. The default working directory is the user’s home directory - this can be customized from the Settings dialog.

Sessions and Projects

Sessions represent local project launches and connections to existing Neurodesk servers. Each Neurodesk UI window in the app is associated with a separate session and sessions can be restored with the same configuration later on.

Session start options

You can start a new session by using the links at the Start section of the Welcome Page.


  • Open Local Neurodesk.. creates a new session in the default working directory.
  • Connect to remote Neurodesk server.. creates a session by connecting to a remote Neurodesk server.

Previously opened sessions are stored as part of application data and they are listed on the Welcome Page. Clicking an item in the Recent sessions list restores the selected session.

Connecting to local Neurodesk

Neurodesk App creates new Neurodesk sessions by launching a locally running Neurodesk server and connecting to it. To open a local instance, click the Open Local Neurodesk.. button in the Start section of the Welcome Page.

This will show a Jupyterlab interface. There are two options to interact with Neurodesk through this interface:

  • By clicking the NeurodeskApp icon on the right. This will launch a new window to start a Neurodesk interface.
  • By module loading containers on the left bar. You can interact with loaded modules through the command line interface.


Connecting to a remote Neurodesk Server

It can also connect to an existing Neurodesk server instance that is running remotely. In order to connect to a server, click the Connect to remote Neurodesk server.. button in the Start section of the Welcome Page.


This will launch a dialog that automatically lists the remote Neurodesk server instances.

Select a server from the list or enter the URL of the Neurodesk application server. If the server requires a token for authentication, make sure to include it as a query parameter of the URL as well (/lab?token=<token-value>). After entering a URL hit Enter key to connect.

If the Persist session data option is checked, then the session information is stored and Neurodesk App will re-use this data on the next launch. If this option is not checked, the session data is automatically deleted at the next launch and servers requiring authentication will prompt for re-login.

You can delete the stored session data manually at any time by using the Clear History option in the Privacy tab of Settings dialog.


Configuration and data files

Neurodesk App stores data in ~/neurodesktop-storage for Linux and Mac, or C:/neurodesktop-storage for Windows, as default.

Add a Custom Data Directory

Neurodesk App stores its data in the following locations:

  • By default, /home/jovyan/neurodesktop-storage in the app (which is bound with local directory ~/neurodesktop-storage in Unix or C:/neurodesktop-storage in Windows)

  • By choice, in the settings window below, select Additional Directory on the left side bar, click Change button to select the local directory, then click Apply & restart. The next time you start the app, the data from the local directory can be found in /home/jovyan/data.

Additional Directory

Uninstalling Neurodesk App

Debian, Ubuntu Linux

sudo apt-get purge neurodeskapp # remove application
sudo rm /usr/bin/neurodeskapp # remove command symlink
rm -rf ~/.config/neurodeskapp # to remove application cache

Red Hat, Fedora, SUSE Linux

sudo rpm -e neurodeskapp # remove application
sudo rm /usr/bin/neurodeskapp # remove command symlink
rm -rf ~/.config/neurodeskapp # to remove application cache

Arch-based Linux distributions

sudo pacman -Rs neurodeskapp-bin


Find the application installation in Finder (in /Applications or ~/Applications) and move to Trash by using CMD + Delete. Clean other application generated files using:

rm -rf ~/Library/neurodeskapp # to remove application cache
rm -rf ~/Library/Application\ Support/neurodeskapp # to remove user data


On Windows, go to Windows Apps & Features dialog using Start Menu -> Settings -> Apps and uninstall Neurodesk App as shown below.

In order to remove application cache, delete C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\neurodeskapp directory.