YaCy (http://yacy.net) is one of those projects I've heard about for a while, but never actually checked it out until recently. Unlike centralized search engines like google, bing, and duckduckgo, YaCy is decentralized, and run entirely by a network of users, giving you lots more options, and a greater chance of privacy.

This guide will show you how to install and use it on GNU/Linux systems. If you're using Windows, there's also a simple installer you can download too.

- Youtube link
- Archive.org mirror
- Torrent
- Keybase mirror


Step 1. Before we start, we need to make sure the correct Java environment is installed. Open a terminal and type java -version then press enter.

java -version

Step 2. If it says java is not installed, it'll give a list of possible options. We want to install openjdk 7. Copy that item, then use sudo apt-get install to install it

sudo apt-get install openjdk-7-jre-headless

Step 3. Create a new directory to store yacy in. I'll call mine ‘search'

mkdir search

Step 4. Head over to yacy.net and download the latest GNU/Linux tarball into this new directory.

Step 5. Change to your new directory, then decompress the tarball

cd search
tar xfz yacy_v1.90_20160704_9000.tar.gz

Step 6. Now change to the yacy directroy, then run the startYACY script by typing the following. This will start search engine running on your system.

cd yacy

Step 7. Now open up your browser, navigate to localhost:8090 and you can now use the yacy P2P search engine. If you want to use it regularly, you could save time by setting up a script to run yacy at startup, and changing your browsers homepage to the localhost address.

There are loads of different options to check out, so I'd suggest having a look yourself. You can do things like run it over Tor, or contribute to the search index, but that's outside the scope of this video.


I'm surprised how easy this was to install and use. Sure, it doesn't have the same amount of results compared to Google, but nothing really does. However, it's great to have other options if you're interested in privacy and internet freedom. Thanks for watching.