4.4 KiB

PyBitmessage Installation Instructions

For an up-to-date version of these instructions, please visit the Bitmessage Wiki.

PyBitmessage can be run in either one of two ways:

  • straight from source


  • from an installed package.


Before running PyBitmessage, make sure you have all the necessary dependencies installed on your system.

Here's a list of dependencies needed for PyBitmessage

  • python2.7
  • python2-qt4 (python-qt4 on Debian/Ubuntu)
  • openssl
  • (Fedora & Redhat only) openssl-compat-bitcoin-libs

Running PyBitmessage

PyBitmessage can be run in two ways:

  • straight from source


  • via a package which is installed on your system. Since PyBitmessage is Beta, it is best to run PyBitmessage from source, so that you may update as needed.


To update PyBitmessage from source (Linux/OS X), you can do these easy steps:

cd PyBitmessage/src/
git fetch --all
git reset --hard origin/master

Voilà! Bitmessage is updated!


Some recent Linux distributions don't support QT4 anymore, hence PyBitmessage won't run with a GUI. However, if you build PyBitmessage as a flatpak, it will run in a sandbox which provides QT4. See the Linux flatpak instructions in the Creating a package for installation section of this document.

To run PyBitmessage from the command-line, you must download the source, then run src/

git clone git://
cd PyBitmessage/ && python src/

That's it! Honestly!


On Windows you can download an executable for Bitmessage here.

However, if you would like to run PyBitmessage via Python in Windows, you can go here for information on how to do so.


First off, install Homebrew.

ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL"

Now, install the required dependencies

brew install git python openssl cartr/qt4/pyqt@4 

Download and run PyBitmessage:

git clone git://
cd PyBitmessage && python src/

Creating a package for installation

If you really want, you can make a package for PyBitmessage, which you may install yourself or distribute to friends. This isn't recommended, since PyBitmessage is in Beta, and subject to frequent change.


First off, since PyBitmessage uses something nifty called packagemonkey, go ahead and get that installed. You may have to build it from source.

Next, edit the script to your liking.

Now, run the appropriate script for the type of package you'd like to make - create a package for Arch Linux - create a package for Debian/Ubuntu - create a package for Gentoo - create a package for OS X - create a package for Puppy Linux - create a RPM package - create a package for Slackware

Linux flatpak

First make sure you have flatpak and flatpak-builder installed. Follow the instructions for your distribution on flathub. The instructions there only cover the installation of flatpak, but flatpak-builder should be the same.

Once you have flatpak and flatpak-builder installed:

git clone git://
cd PyBitmessage/
git submodule add
flatpak-builder --install build/_flatpak -install-deps-from=flathub --force-clean --user org.bitmessage.PyBitmessage.json

This will install PyBitmessage to your local flatpak user repository, but it takes a while to compile because QT4 and PyQt4 have to be build, among others.

When done you can launch PyBitmessage via: flatpak run -v org.bitmessage.PyBitmessage

If you want to free up disk space you can remove the Sdk runtime again: flatpak uninstall org.freedesktop.Sdk//18.08


Please refer to this page on the forums for instructions on how to create a package on OS X.

Please note that some versions of OS X don't work.


TODO: Create Windows package creation instructions