Getting Started Edit

Gutenberg is a Node.js-based project, built primarily in JavaScript.

The first step is to install the latest active LTS release of Node. The easiest way (on macOS, Linux, or Windows 10 with the Linux Subsystem) is by installing and running nvm. Once nvm is installed, you can install the correct version of Node by running nvm install in the Gutenberg directory.

Once you have Node installed, run these scripts from within your local Gutenberg repository:

Note: The install scripts require Python to be installed and in the path of the local system.

npm install
npm run build

This will build Gutenberg, ready to be used as a WordPress plugin!

If you don’t have a local WordPress environment to load Gutenberg in, we can help get that up and running, too.

Local Environment Local Environment

Step 1: Installing a Local Environment Step 1: Installing a Local Environment

Quickest Method: Using Docker Quickest Method: Using Docker

The quickest way to get up and running is to use the provided Docker setup. If you don’t already have it, you’ll need to install Docker by following their instructions for Windows 10 Pro, all other version of Windows, macOS, or Linux.

Once Docker is installed and running, run this script to install WordPress, and build your local environment:

npm run env install

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Alternative Method: Using an Existing Local WordPress Install Alternative Method: Using an Existing Local WordPress Install

WordPress will be installed in the wordpress directory, if you need to access WordPress core files directly, you can find them there.

If you already have WordPress checked out in a different directory, you can use that installation, instead, by running these commands:

export WP_DEVELOP_DIR=/path/to/wordpress-develop
npm run env connect

This will use WordPress’ own local environment, and mount your Gutenberg directory as a volume there.

In Windows, you can set the WP_DEVELOP_DIR environment variable using the appropriate method for your shell:

CMD: set WP_DEVELOP_DIR=/path/to/wordpress-develop
PowerShell: $env:WP_DEVELOP_DIR = "/path/to/wordpress-develop"

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Step 2: Accessing and Configuring the Local WordPress Install Step 2: Accessing and Configuring the Local WordPress Install

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Accessing the Local WordPress Install Accessing the Local WordPress Install

Whether you decided to use Docker or an existing local WordPress install, the WordPress installation should now be available at http://localhost:8889 (Username: admin, Password: password).
If this port is in use, you can override it using the LOCAL_PORT environment variable. For example running the below command on your computer will change the URL to
http://localhost:7777 .

Linux/macOS: export LOCAL_PORT=7777
Windows using Command Prompt: setx LOCAL_PORT "7777"
Windows using PowerShell: $env:LOCAL_PORT = "7777"

If you’re running e2e tests, this change will be used correctly.

To shut down this local WordPress instance run npm run env stop. To start it back up again, run npm run env start.

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Toggling Debug Systems Toggling Debug Systems

WordPress comes with specific debug systems designed to simplify the process as well as standardize code across core, plugins and themes. It is possible to use environment variables (LOCAL_WP_DEBUG and LOCAL_SCRIPT_DEBUG) to update a site’s configuration constants located in wp-config.php file. Both flags can be disabled at any time by running the following command:

Example on Linux/MacOS:

LOCAL_SCRIPT_DEBUG=false LOCAL_WP_DEBUG=false npm run env install

By default, both flags will be set to true.

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Troubleshooting Troubleshooting

You might find yourself stuck on a screen stating that “you are running WordPress without JavaScript and CSS files”. If you tried installing WordPress via npm run env install, it probably means that something went wrong during the process. To fix it, try removing the /wordpress folder and running npm run env install again.

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On A Remote Server On A Remote Server

Open a terminal (or if on Windows, a command prompt) and navigate to the repository you cloned. Now type npm install to get the dependencies all set up. Once that finishes, you can type npm run build. You can now upload the entire repository to your wp-content/plugins directory on your web server and activate the plugin from the WordPress admin.

You can also type npm run package-plugin which will run the two commands above and create a zip file automatically for you which you can use to install Gutenberg through the WordPress admin.

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Storybook Storybook

Storybook is an open source tool for developing UI components in isolation for React, React Native and more. It makes building stunning UIs organized and efficient.

The Gutenberg repository also includes Storybook integration that allows testing and developing in a WordPress-agnostic context. This is very helpful for developing reusable components and trying generic JavaScript modules without any backend dependency.

You can launch Storybook by running npm run storybook:dev locally. It will open in your browser automatically.

You can also test Storybook for the current master branch on GitHub Pages: