What is Mozilla VPN

Mozilla VPN is a VPN client developed by Mozilla. It is open source and uses WireGuard. It is available for Linux, Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. To use it, you need to buy a subscription from Mozilla.

Building from source

As usual, Linux binaries are only provided for Debian-based systems. If you want to run Mozilla’s VPN client on e.g., Gentoo, you might want to build from source.

So cloning the repository is the first step:

git clone https://github.com/mozilla-mobile/mozilla-vpn-client

It uses git submodules, so we have to do

git submodule init
git submodule update

The project uses cmake, so it should be easy enough. In theory!

If you do not have rust installed yet, that is the time! Get the toolchain installer and run rustup default stable to get everything set up. Also, you need wireguard and its wireguard-tools installed.

Surprisingly, Gentoo’s Qt is currently too old (Qt6 is required by the vpn client) and even with the qt overlay and after unmasking a bunch of hard-masked stuff I was not able to produce a successful build.

So I figured that I had to compile Qt6 from source first. I was delighted when I found out that in the repository of the vpn client a script is provided for that exact purpose!

Building Qt6

How nice! So downloading and unpacking the qt6 sources and running

scripts/utils/qt6_compile.sh path/to/qt-everywhere-src-6.2.4 path/to/destination

should be all that is needed for that.

However, I learned that my cmake was not built with zstd support and I did not find a quick way to resolve that in Gentoo. So, I added the line


in CMakeLists.txt of the qt6 sources and then everything was fine.

Building Mozilla VPN Client

First, we need to install the python dependencies:

pip install -r requirements.txt --user

Now we can use the compiled qt6 to configure the project:

mkdir build && cmake -S . -B build -DCMAKE_PREFIX_PATH=path/to/qt6/lib/cmake

If everything went well, we compile the vpn client:

cmake --build build -j$(nproc)


sudo cmake --install build

installs everything to /usr/local including a .desktop file in /usr/local/share/applications, so you can start the tool conveniently.