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[[!meta title="How Tails works"]]
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Leave no trace on the computer
[[!img anywhere.svg link="no" alt=""]]
<i class="metaphor">Like a tent, you can carry Tails with you and use it anywhere.</i>
Your secure computer anywhere
To use Tails, shut down the computer and start on your Tails USB stick instead of starting on Windows, macOS, or Linux.
You can temporarily <strong>turn your own computer into a secure machine</strong>. You can also <strong>stay safe while using the computer of somebody else</strong>.
Tails is a [[!inline pages="inc/stable_amd64_iso_size" raw="yes" sort="age"]] download and takes ½ hour to install. Tails can be installed on any USB stick of 8 GB minimum. Tails works on most computers less than 10 years old. You can start again on the other operating system after you shut down Tails.
You don't have to worry about the computer having viruses because Tails runs independently from the other operating system and never uses the hard disk. But, Tails cannot always protect you if you install it from a computer with viruses or if you use it on a computer with malicious hardware, like keyloggers.
See also:
[[Warnings: Tails is safe but not magic!|doc/about/warnings]]
[[Download and install Tails|install]]
[[System requirements and recommended hardware|doc/about/requirements]]
[[!img amnesia.svg link="no" alt=""]] <i class="metaphor">Like a tent, Tails is amnesic: it always starts empty and leaves no trace when you leave.</i>
Tails always starts from the same clean state and <strong>everything you do disappears</strong> automatically when you shut down Tails.
Without Tails, almost everything you do can leave traces on the computer:
Websites that you visited, even in private mode
Files that you opened, even if you deleted them