Desktop App

How do I successfully install the Freelancer Desktop App in Catalina and Big Sur Mac OS?

Users who have the latest two versions of Mac OS, Catalina and Big Sur, will experience an Apple imposed block when attempting to install external apps that haven't been approved by the App Store, like the Freelancer Desktop App.


If you get the error "[file name] can't be opened because Apple cannot check it for malicious software", you need to manually agree to install the app in your device.


To successfully install, go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > General Tab. Click the lock in the bottom left to unlock your System Preferences. Make sure that the radio button App Store and identified developers is selected, and click Open Anyway.


How do I install the Freelancer Desktop App?

You may download the installer for your operating system through the Freelancer Desktop App page. The link to the installer can also be found at the page of your current hourly project.

  • On the modal pop up page, choose your computer’s operating system (Windows, Linux or Mac). Whenever applicable, a dropdown list of installers will appear for each supported version of the operating system.

  • Once downloaded, locate the installer file in your default download folder and double click it to install the application. The Freelancer Desktop App is ready to use once installation is complete.

The Freelancer Desktop App is used by freelancers on hourly projects to track their work hours and have screenshots of their work recorded for their clients to monitor.

How do I start using the app?

Sign In

  • Launch the Freelancer Desktop App - click it from your list of installed programs or through the created desktop shortcut.

  • Sign in with your Freelancer account information.

  • Tick “Automatic Login” if you want to be logged in automatically when you open the app next time.

Freelancer Desktop App Dashboard

Only hourly projects will appear on the Desktop App dashboard. The following tabs will be available on the dashboard:

  • Overview
  • Messages
  • Shared Files
  • Invoices



Shows your weekly limit, tracked hours (if you have a weekly contract), hourly rate and invoice reminder (if applicable).



This tab allows you to message your employer for the selected project, attach files using the paperclip icon, and download files sent by your employer.


Shared Files

This displays all the files you and your employer have uploaded on the app. You can find them more easily here instead of browsing through the message thread.



This displays all the project's invoices. You can view them individually and check their payment status.



Offline Tracking

Offline tracking enables you to track your work hours when the Internet connection becomes unstable. In this case, the Freelancer Desktop App will still take random screenshots as proof of your work. With offline tracking, you can prevent losing records of the hours you’ve worked and their corresponding invoices.

How does offline tracking work?

What are the limits of offline tracking?


You will receive notifications from the app for new messages, awarded projects, created/released milestones, and issued invoices.



If you have a long list of active projects, you can easily search for them in the Search bar. 




Displays the lists of errors that you may encounter in the app.

If you keep encountering an error and need assistance, simply click Collect System Information. This will produce a zip file which includes error logs that we can use when investigating your issue. Please email us with this zip file attached.



What is offline tracking?

Aside from the current time tracking, messaging, and file sharing features of the Freelancer Desktop App, the offline tracking feature enables the freelancer to track their hours and take random screenshots of their work even when there's no stable Internet connection.

Milestone Payments are now automatically generated based on the hours tracked using the Freelancer Desktop App. With offline tracking, you can prevent losing records of the hours you’ve worked. Each Milestone Payment® comes with its own invoice which you can keep for taxation purposes.

How does offline tracking work?

  • Log in to the app in order for your projects to load. You can’t log in to the app without an Internet connection.
  • Select an hourly project.
  • Click the Play button to start tracking your hours.

All your sessions will be saved locally into an encrypted file which is automatically uploaded whenever you're online.

When you lose your Internet connection, the app will be in offline mode and will retry to reconnect automatically.

Once the app goes offline, there will be a notification at the top-right of the screen "You are offline" and a pop-up will also appear to confirm that the app is trying to reconnect. While you're offline, you can still track your hours and your saved sessions will be uploaded as soon as you have an established Internet connection.

Offline Tracking Popup

What are the limits of offline tracking?

  • While tracking offline, you can use the app to take manual screenshots or allow it to randomly save your sessions.

Allowing the app to randomly take screenshots will save an estimate of 4 hours of work. Manually taking screenshots may lessen the sessions you can save on your disk. If you reach this limit, you will be notified that you have exceeded the limit and will need to go back online so that the saved sessions will be uploaded and you can continue to track your hours. 

  • You cannot chat with your contact when you're offline. Check your network connection to go back online.

  • You cannot view other projects that are not loaded when you're offline. Check your network connection to go back online.

How do I uninstall the Freelancer Desktop App?


  • Click Start.

  • Select Control Panel.

  • Follow the steps to uninstall the program.




  • Go to the Ubuntu Software Center.

  • Click the Installed tab and go to the Unknown app category.

  • Follow the steps to uninstall the program.




  • Go to the program menu.

  • Click Administration.

  • Click Software Manager.

  • Click Categories.

  • Search for the Freelancer Desktop App. Once shown, click Remove.

  • Follow the steps to uninstall the program.



Alternatively, use the hardcore Linux way through a command line:
dpkg -r freelancer-desktop-app

Then delete the configuration package for the app:
# rm -rf .freelancer-desktop-app



  • Use the command line:
    # yum remove freelancer-desktop-app

Mac OS

  • Open Finder.

  • Go to Applications.

  • Click the Freelancer Desktop App and drag it to the TRASH icon of the desktop interface.



What are the system requirements for the Freelancer Desktop?

In order to use the Freelancer Desktop App software, the minimum requirements are:


Operating System:  Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10
Processor:  Any modern dual core CPU
Memory:  512MB of RAM
Disk Space:  at least 100 MB


Operating System:  Ubuntu 12.04, 12.10, 13.04, 13.10 and 14.04
Processor:  Any modern dual core CPU
Memory:  512MB of RAM
Disk Space:  at least 300 MB


Operating System:  Maya, Petra
Processor:  Any modern dual core CPU
Memory:  512MB of RAM
Disk Space:  at least 300 MB


Operating System:  Fedora 20
Processor:  Any modern dual core CPU
Memory:  512MB of RAM
Disk Space:  at least 300 MB

Mac OS

Operating System:  10.7.x, 10.8.x, 10.9.x, 10.10
Processor:  Any modern dual core CPU
Memory:  512MB of RAM
Disk Space:  at least 300 MB

I am encountering this bug, what do I do?

Here are some problems freelancers may encounter while using the Desktop App:

  • When installing, it says the installer is corrupted

Re-download the app using a different browser using private or incognito mode.

The file size of the installer should be no less than 50MB.

  • Cannot install Desktop App in 64-bit Linux

Use the 64-bit installer for Linux.

  • Displays error: The setup files are corrupted. Please obtain a new copy of the program.

Check the file size of the installer. Be sure it is 56.3MB for Windows, 68.2MB for Linux 32-bit, 66.4MB for Linux 64-bit, and 71.2MB for Mac. If not, download the installer again using a different browser.

    • Displays error: [file name] can't be opened because Apple cannot check it for malicious software

Go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > General Tab. Click the lock in the bottom left to unlock your System Preferences. Make sure that the radio button App Store and identified developers is selected, and click Open Anyway.


  • App is not displaying after running

Look for the running process of freelancer-desktop-app and kill the process then run again.

Check the antivirus and firewall if they are blocking the app from running.

Due to hardware and software compatibility, sometimes you need to wait for a longer time.

  • Cannot see my project

Check if there is an ongoing hourly project (the account should be that of a freelancer). 

Note that fixed-price projects are no longer shown in the app.

  • Messages are not delivered or received

Check network connectivity. Restart the App.

Check if the chat/messaging on the site is working.

  • Screenshot that produced black screen in Linux

If the Desktop App is in a virtual machine, turn off 3D Acceleration. Note that this in turn will produce a white border in Desktop App for Linux Mint. (Desktop App functionalities will not be affected.)

If you are using a physical machine, update the graphics driver.

Use up-to-date Linux OS.

  • Screenshot that produced only desktop background in MacOS

Check if you have any unchecked items in "Settings -> Security & Privacy -> Screen Recording". Grant the Screen Recording permission for "env", restart the Freelancer Desktop App. Check if screenshot is working

  • Screenshot not displaying in Project Page/Uploading of Screenshot Failed

Get your logs file and data folder, then contact Support by clicking the Chat Now! button here.

  • Lost/Missing hours

Verify that it is not related to the issue ‘Screenshot not displaying in Project Page’

Check your project page and confirm that there are no deleted screenshots. If there are no deleted screenshots, contact Support here.

Deleted screenshots reduce the time that can be invoiced. If there are deleted screenshots, check if they are equal to the number of lost hours. If not, contact Support here.

  • Hours displayed in the app doesn’t match hours shown in PVP

The value of tracked hours shown in the app may be different from what is shown on the project page due to several factors:

- If there is a screenshot deleted, the hours that can be invoiced will be deducted as well.
- If the app was tracking offline, screenshots will not get uploaded in the server. However, it will be uploaded once the app is online.
- Uploading screenshots to the server depends on the connection speed of the freelancer.
- You need to refresh the PVP page in order for the list of sessions to update.

  • Login fail after reinstalling the app.

Verify if your account is not suspended nor limited. If your account has no issues and your login works, contact Support here.

Will the desktop app work in a virtual machine environment?

Desktop App will work in virtual machines (VM) as long as the operating system is supported. However, we recommend that you let the Desktop App run on the VM's host machine as much as possible. VMs are simulated environments; there are subtle differences when running on an actual machine. This sometimes causes issues with the Desktop App.

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