Anyone using expressvpn?

Absolutely loving silverblue; takes a little while to grok the concept but I’m definitely bought in.

rpm-ostree install /home/fedora-andrew/Downloads/exp*

and I can see the package installed

[root@localhost ~]# rpm-ostree status
State: idle
● ostree://fedora:fedora/32/x86_64/silverblue
Version: 32.20200809.0 (2020-08-09T01:37:31Z)
BaseCommit: 3a85ef6d7cd203da089c561467d199dde1b02de5fdd8df494c920f5d247e55d8
GPGSignature: Valid signature by 97A1AE57C3A2372CCA3A4ABA6C13026D12C944D0
LayeredPackages: fedora-workstation-repositories gnome-tweak-tool lm_sensors
LocalPackages: expressvpn-

I can see the service running after a reboot

[fedora-andrew@localhost ~]$ ps aux | grep express
root 9136 0.0 0.1 1631332 39136 ? Ssl 09:17 0:00 /usr/sbin/expressvpnd --client-version 2.6.0 --client-build 32
fedora-+ 10657 0.0 0.0 216084 644 pts/0 S+ 09:22 0:00 grep --color=auto express

but can’t complete the next step of setup

[fedora-andrew@localhost ~]$ expressvpn activate
Cannot connect to expressvpnd daemon.

It seems that the expressvpn daemon is not running. Please run “sudo service expressvpn restart” to start it.

If the problem persists, please contact us.

I assume this is silverblue related but I’m at a loss as to what to try next. Any general pointers would be great.



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I do not know this VPN provider nor do I have access to their package so I can only guess and give suggestions:

  • Can you try installing it and running it from a privileged podman container with --net=host?
  • Can you make sure that the daemon has been started via systemd?
  • Maybe the activation step requires elevated privileges / run via sudo?
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Most likely, it relies on OpenVPN or WireGuard.
So, you should be able to configure the connection with NetworkManager.
The easiest way to do it is to import the VPN profile.

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What is the output of systemctl status expressvpn ?

I am not an expressvpn user but maybe you should try using the graphical installer, it seems really simple and I’ve been impressed with what Fedora’s GUI can do. Check it out:

Thanks - that’s actually the process I followed. I’ve used express with Linux for a while and it’s usually straight forward hence me thinking this was an issue with installing in Silverblue via ostree.

systemd believes the service to be running

● expressvpn.service - ExpressVPN Daemon
Loaded: loaded (/etc/systemd/system/expressvpn.service; enabled; vendor preset: disabled)
Active: active (running) since Wed 2020-08-12 08:32:22 BST; 1h 6min ago
Main PID: 1614 (expressvpnd)
Tasks: 26 (limit: 38335)
Memory: 48.1M
CPU: 181ms
CGroup: /system.slice/expressvpn.service
└─1614 /usr/sbin/expressvpnd --client-version 2.6.0 --client-build 32

Aug 12 08:32:22 localhost.localdomain systemd[1]: Started ExpressVPN Daemon.

I can manually setup the connection with OpenVPN; however, I then lose the ability to control the VPN through the firefox plugin which relies on the expressvpn system binary to be installed.

The problem is not insurmountable; it’s just that this usually works very easily on Fedora Workstation.


I am using expressvpn. It’s an old problem.
I use it by “Manual configuration” openvpn.

Got the same issue and reached out to their support, no dice.
Ended up installing the profiles for the 5 destinations I use the most, then connecting from the toolbar.

I’ll subscribe to this topic in case a solution is eventually found.

Actually, same problem on Fedora 33 right now. While on 32 everything was ok.