Debian 12 (Bookworm) was released on June 10, 2023 and it has been 2 months since its release and we still don’t have an official release of MongoDB for it. It’s the same issue that we faced with Ubuntu 22.04 which was dependence on the old LibSSL 1.1 which was dropped with Debian 12 release.

MongoDB Team is working on adding support for Debian 12 but it will only support v7.0 for now with no plans to support the older versions. You can check the progress on MongoDB’s issues page.

Till the official package is available, we will have to use workarounds to get around the limitation.

Install MongoDB using Docker

This is probably the simplest way to get MongoDB up and running on your machine without using any workarounds. Also, even when Debian 12 is officially supported, Docker method will be the only way to install an older version(<7.0) of MongoDB.

The first step is to install Docker. Refer to the official Docker documentation for the instructions. Run the following command post installation to add your system user to the dockers group. This way you won’t have to use sudo with your docker commands.

sudo usermod -aG docker ${USER}

Log out and log back in for the change to take affect.

Run the following command to start the MongoDB’s docker container using the latest version.

docker run -dp 27017:27017 -v local-mongo:/data/db --name local-mongo --restart=always mongo:latest

Check the status of the running container by running docker ps.

CONTAINER ID   IMAGE          COMMAND                  CREATED          STATUS          PORTS                                           NAMES
adca52fdf919   mongo:latest   "docker-entrypoint.s…"   43 seconds ago   Up 42 seconds>27017/tcp, :::27017->27017/tcp   local-mongo

If you want to use v4.4 of MongoDB, use the following command instead.

docker run -dp 27017:27017 -v local-mongo:/data/db --name local-mongo --restart=always mongo:4.4

To connect to the MongoDB container, use the following command.

docker exec -it local-mongo bash

To check the container logs, use the following command. The -follow argument allows you to watch the logs in real-time. Press Ctrl+C to return to the terminal.

docker logs local-mongo --follow

To configure your MongoDB server, pass the location to the configuration file using the --config flag.

docker run -d
    --name local-mongo
    -v local-data:/data/db
    -v ./mongo.conf:/etc/mongo/mongo.conf
    mongo:latest --config /etc/mongo/mongo.conf

You can set username and password by passing environment variables using the -e flag.

docker run -d
    -p 27017:27017
    --name local-mongo
    -v local-mongo:/data/db

The above command will create a database with the provided credentials. To learn more, check the MongoDB Docker hub page.

Install MongoDB using a workaround

Note: This method is not recommended for production environments.

If you don’t want to use Docker, you can use a workaround to installing MongoDB on Debian 12. The reason MongoDB doesn’t work on Debian 12 is because of the missing libssl1.1 library. Debian 12 is using libssl3 instead which doesn’t work with the MongoDB’s debian packages.

The workaround involves using the Debian 11 MongoDB package and manually installing the older version of the library.

Download the libssl1.1 library.


Install the library.

sudo dpkg -i libssl1.1_1.1.1n-0+deb11u5_amd64.deb

Install MongoDB’s GPG key.

curl -fsSL | \
   sudo gpg --dearmor -o /usr/share/keyrings/mongodb-server-6.0.gpg

Create the MongoDB repository file. We will use Debian 11(bullseye) release for the repository.

echo "deb [ signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/mongodb-server-6.0.gpg] bullseye/mongodb-org/6.0 main" | \
   sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/mongodb-org-6.0.list

For 7.0 and 5.0 versions, replace 6.0 in the above commands with 7.0 and 5.0.

Install MongoDB server.

sudo apt update
sudo apt install mongodb-org

Enable and start MongoDB server.

sudo systemctl enable mongod --now

This concludes our tutorial on installing MongoDB on a Debian 12 machine. To find out more, go through the following resources.