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Installing Gaia

This guide will explain how to install the gaiad binary and run the cli. With this binary installed on a server, you can participate on the mainnet as either a Full Node or a Validator.

Build Requirements

At present, the SDK fully supports installation on linux distributions. For the purpose of this instruction set, we'll be using Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. It is also possible to install gaiad on Unix, while Windows may require additional unsupported third party installation. All steps are listed below for a clean install.

  1. Update & install build tools
  2. Install Go
  3. Install Gaiad binaries

Build Tools

Install make and gcc.


sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install -y make gcc

Install Go


Go 1.21+ is required.

We suggest the following two ways to install Go. Check out the official docs and Go installer for the correct download for your operating system. Alternatively, you can install Go yourself from the command line. Detailed below are standard default installation locations, but feel free to customize.

Go Binary Downloads


At the time of this writing, the latest release is 1.21.7. We're going to download the tarball, extract it to /usr/local, and export GOROOT to our $PATH

curl -OL

sudo tar -C /usr/local -xvf

export PATH=$PATH:/usr/local/go/bin

Remember to add GOPATH to your $PATH environment variable. If you're not sure where that is, run go env GOPATH. This will allow us to run the gaiad binary in the next step. If you're not sure how to set your $PATH take a look at these instructions.

export PATH=$PATH:$(go env GOPATH)/bin

Install the binaries

Next, let's install the latest version of Gaia. Make sure you git checkout the correct released version.

git clone -b <latest-release-tag>
cd gaia && make install

If this command fails due to the following error message, you might have already set LDFLAGS prior to running this step.

flag provided but not defined: -L
usage: link [options] main.o
make: *** [install] Error 2

Unset this environment variable and try again.

LDFLAGS="" make install

NOTE: If you still have issues at this step, please check that you have the latest stable version of GO installed.

That will install the gaiad binary. Verify that everything installed successfully by running:

gaiad version --long

You should see something similar to the following:

name: gaia
server_name: gaiad
version: v15.0.0
commit: 682770f2410ab0d33ac7f0c7203519d7a99fa2b6
build_tags: netgo,ledger
go: go version go1.21.7 linux/amd64

Build Tags

Build tags indicate special features that have been enabled in the binary.

Build TagDescription
netgoName resolution will use pure Go code
ledgerLedger devices are supported (hardware wallets)

Work with a Cosmos SDK Clone

To work with your own modifications of the Cosmos SDK, make a fork of this repo, and add a replace clause to the go.mod file. The replace clause you add to go.mod must provide the correct import path:

  • Make appropriate changes
  • Add replace => /path/to/clone/cosmos-sdk to go.mod
  • Run make clean install or make clean build
  • Test changes


Now you can join the mainnet, the public testnet.