Login to browser extensions when logging into desktop app and vice versa

I don’t see how sync pin from desktop app to browser plugin on the same system should be a security issue. Can’t both the plugin and the app best set up to access the same data files ? As to sharing across the cloud, actually Windows lets you enter a pin and syncs that across the cloud. Any data passing from the bitwarden server to the mobile app would be strongly encrypted, plus the master password would need to be entered first, so that’s probably strong enough security in my case. I don’t think I need to go to those extremes to log into my account to order a pizza at the local pizza place lol

Not only from a security-perspective, but also from a usability-perspective, this seems much better. I’ve used keepass this way and it’s a much nicer user-experience. I also wondered why I have to authenticate again after I logged into the desktop already. I’m an it-person, so I know how it works, but from a user-perspective, I’ve identitified myself already, why do I have to do it over and over? Wasn’t it clear it was me?

Of couse, I don’t mind reauthenticating to bitwarden as it’s the main keeper of the passwords, but not in every application that I would like to use it …

So, I’m a big supporter of this.

Off topic a bit, but the usability of keepass needs to drastically improve for family-usage. I bought a family- and premium-bitwarden license, but I can’t see bitwarden currently being used by my family to the usability-issues, although I like its architecture and opensource/security-perspective. So, I hope it will improve. I’ll probably switch to Lastpass untill then.


I agree with you. My point is that this is the type of improvement that most common people won’t fully understand. For that reason, it will be hard to gain votes for this request and see it realized. I already wrote to Kyle Spearrin to explain my point, but I haven’t got an answer… I will try to ask him what he think about it soon.
By now, if you know a way to promote this thread, I’ll be really interested to know.

I don’t think that requiring the desktop app to be installed would be a great benefit.
Some users, mainly in corporate environment, are not allowed to install arbitrary executables on their computer. I’m currently in one of those environments, and I can use BW because it just takes the form of a browser extension which my company doesn’t enforce any control on.

Though, I do feel like allowing the desktop app and the extension to talk if they’re both installed would be very nice. That would allow to unlock once and use both apps for example.

There are already some feature requests related to this, see:

Also, I’m out of votes but I do support the idea :slightly_smiling_face:


Same with me! I switched to “Bitwarden” because I’m able to only use the browser extension at work. I’m not allowed to install any software on my laptop at work. That’s why I’m not able to use “Sticky Password”. Because I need to have the desktop app installed to use the browser extension.

“1Password” has got 2 browser extensions - the legacy extension needs the desktop app to be installed and the new extension is able to work without desktop app.

At home I’m using the Bitwarden desktop app and the browser extension for Vivaldi. I would love to only have to unlock one instance to unlock the other instance too. Actually I have to unlock the desktop app and the browser extension. :slight_smile:

Very nice idea! :+1:


Maybe having an extension that allows 2 working methods: one standalone and one attached to main application if detected and/or chosen. Roboform’s Firefox add-on works this way. Or making 2 different extensions, but it will add complexity in my opinion.

I still believe that it isn’t efficient to open the database twice, but at the same time, I agree with you that it’s also important to be able to work with the extension alone.


aren’t you able to install an application as a normal user? Maybe it’s blocked too, but I know environments where this is possible as it runs as your user and doesn’t require administrative privileges to be installed.

I’m not sure, but I think it’s possible from Microsoft’s Store. I didn’t test it though. Maybe it could be allowed or blocked by admin too.

By the way, my point is that the extension should works with desktop’s app and as a standalone one if there is need to. Or, offering 2 extensions that works in the 2 needed scheme. The way I see it, it could be as simple as a switch directly on main extension’s frame that turns it to one another. If app is chosen, it ask for a paring code (for example). If standalone is chosen, it acts the same way as actually.

I’m able to install but I’m not allowed! I’m only allowed to install software which is on our firm whitelist. And Bitwarden is not on this whitelist. :wink:

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I’d like to see such a feature too, but not because I think it’s actually necessary. My current “problem” (it’s more of a nuisance) is that unlocking the browser extensions takes incredibly long. As far as I can tell, it downloads the entire database on every unlock, and that is what it’s taking so long. If it would use the desktop app to get the information, it wouldn’t have to download all of it on unlock first. So my request is slightly different in: either “make the extensions work faster” or “use the cached information of the desktop apps better”.

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After a long time not feeding that request, I decided to feed it with an argument that matters for the power surfers more than other probably. Maybe not… there may be some other reasons than mine to do so. I always use 2 browsers at the same time for better compartmentalization of security level. To me, it means using one browser for common surfing and lesser private use and the other for job, banking, buying, etc. It allows better handling of privacy and security.

So, even if only security maniacs like me do so or someone that needs a specific browser to work but doesn’t like it at its usual one. I believe that a solid passwords manager like the one we adore (not to mention it :slightly_smiling_face: ), should help that kind of use to be easier. If the user only needs to unlock the main application to use it and all the linked extensions, it helps a lot to fasten browsing.

Also, I noticed that there’s a bug with Vivaldi’s browser extension. The Bitwarden’s extension isn’t working flawlessly when it comes to locking (not very cool for security though :fearful: ). So if the locking happens at the main application, it become less difficult to manage different browsers extensions coding, considering that the differences specific to each browsers wont need a lot of code to adjust.

And, for those who need an extension in a controlled environment where it’s not possible to install the main app, the only thing needed, is to make the extension works in a minimal (to make it lighter and easier to update) or complete autonomous mode when there’s no application to back it.

So, to resume the benefits :

  1. Stronger security at the OS level than in a browser’s environment for encryption/decyption;
  2. Faster (only one authentication) and easier unlocking of many instances of Bitwarden;
  3. Live syncing of the opened instances of the same OS done instantly as they are using the same database;
  4. Less RAM and CPU needed for all these instance (again, one database opened in RAM);
  5. Easier use of the OS features for both security and authentication capacities;
  6. Lesser risks of syncing conflicts;
  7. Easier and “probably”, lighter coding and updating of the extensions;
  8. Lighter extension means lighter browser if someone works with a lot of extensions opened;
  9. Less possibilities that some new flaws in one or many browsers (all Chromium based for example) break the extension’s security by making such flaws weaken Bitwarden’s extension. Less code, less weaknesses;
  10. and maybe other benefits I just don’t know…

Sure, there’s cons, feel free to share those, but don’t speak about the amount needed as one of these because it can’t be a good reason to make the decision to stop working forward. That way, Bitwarden will miss its purpose for my part.

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:eyes: :eyes: :eyes:



Yeah! It’s great to see this really going on the road. This improvement of Bitwarden system can boost it in many ways as I have a said for a while. I will keep my fingers crossed :blush:
And thanks for the info.

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You are logged into the Bitwarden Desktop app, but you have to type in your password each time you restart your browser.

Solution? :thinking:

One login solves it all (like in Dashlane :deer:): Connection between desktop app and browser extension(s).


Having the browser apps and desktop app share login, session time-outs, locking, etc would be a real time saver, I’m often logging in on a browser extension only to find I have to log in on the desktop app seconds later.
If I log in on the desktop app, it would be great if all my browser extensions were logged in automatically at the same time, and when one was locked, or logged out of, all of them were then similarly safe.


+1 for this as a user thinking of switching from dashlane premium to bitwarden premium.

The MacOS browser experience just seems a bit disjointed to me.

The extensions should use the desktop app as a vault to pull from so we don’t have to log into each browser.

log in once and it works in all browsers.

At least thats my expectations. Seems more intuitive.


+1 to the request to sync lock/unlock states between browser and desktop app. This is currently keeping me moving to bitwarden from 1password. Very slick app, great work guys!

That’s a must have feature!

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I use both Chrome and Firefox browsers all the time on my notebook, in addition to the desktop Bitwarden app. I also have a couple of different versions and instances of Firefox running as well (with different profiles).

If I unlock the vault in any one of these places, I want to have the vaults in all the other browsers automatically unlocked. Please add this capability as a configurable option.

This feature would be especially useful now, as a workaround to the lack of biometric support in the Firefox extension.

My vault key is a 64 byte sentence, so fingerprint unlocking is obviously important.


I too usually work with a couple of browsers, sometimes 3, so having a single log-in that works across all browsers simultaneously would be a massive help. don’t really need the desktop app at all as long as the browsers can communicate and there’s a single log in process to log into all extensions simultaneously

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