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Manually build Netdata from source

These instructions are for advanced users and distribution package maintainers. Unless this describes you, you almost certainly want to follow our guide for manually installing Netdata from a git checkout instead.

Required dependencies

At a bare minimum, Netdata requires the following libraries and tools to build and run successfully:

  • libuuid
  • libuv version 1.0 or newer
  • zlib
  • CMake 3.13 or newer
  • GCC or Xcode (Clang is known to have issues in certain configurations, see Using Clang)
  • Ninja or Make (Ninja is preferred as it results in significantly faster builds)
  • Git (we use git in the build system to generate version info, you don't need a full install, just a working git show command)

The following additional dependencies are also needed, but will be prepared automatically by CMake if they are not available on the build system.

  • libyaml
  • JSON-C

Additionally, the following build time features require additional dependencies:

  • TLS support for the web GUI:
    • OpenSSL 1.0.2 or newer or LibreSSL 3.0.0 or newer.
  • dbengine metric storage:
    • liblz4 r129 or newer
    • OpenSSL 1.0 or newer (LibreSSL amy work, but is largely untested).
  • Netdata Cloud support:
    • A working internet connection
    • OpenSSL 1.0.2 or newer or LibreSSL 3.0.0 or newer.
    • protobuf (Google Protocol Buffers) and protoc compiler. If protobuf is not available on the system, CMake can be instructed to fetch and build a usable version for Netdata.
  • Netdata Go collectors:
    • Go 1.21 or newer

Preparing the source tree

Netdata uses Git submodules for some of it’s components, which must be fetched prior to building Netdata. If you are using a source tarball published by the Netdata project, then these are included. If you are using a checkout of the Git repository, you may need to explicitly fetch and update the submodules using git submodule update --init --recursive.

Netdata cloud

Building Netdata

Once the source tree has been prepared, Netdata is ready to be configured and built. Netdata uses CMake for configuration, and strongly prefers the use of an external build directory. To configure and build Netdata:

  1. Run cmake -S . -B build -G Ninja in the source tree. build can be replaced with whatever path you want for the build directory. If you wish to use Make instead of Ninja for the build, remove the -G Ninja from the command.
  2. Run cmake --build build, where build is the build directory. CMake’s --parallel option can be used to control the number of build jobs that are used.
  3. Run cmake --install build, where build is the build directory.

Configure options

Netdata’s CMake build infrastructure intentionally does very little auto-detection, and requires most components to be explicitly enabled or disabled. A full list of available configuration options for a given version of Netdata, with help descriptions, can be seen by running cmake -LH in the source tree.

Using Clang

Netdata is primarily developed using GCC, but in most cases we also build just fine using Clang. Under some build configurations of Clang itself, you may see build failures with the linker reporting errors about nonrepresentable section on output. We currently do not have a conclusive fix for this issue (the obvious fix leads to other issues which we haven't been able to fix yet), and unfortunately the only workaround is to use a different build of Clang or to use GCC.

Linking errors relating to OpenSSL

Netdata's build system currently does not reliably support building on systems which have multiple ABI incompatible versions of OpenSSL installed. In such situations, you may encounter linking errors due to Netdata trying to build against headers for one version but link to a different version.

Additional components

A full featured install of Netdata requires some additional components which must be built and installed separately from the main Netdata agent. All of these should be handled after installing Netdata itself.

eBPF collector

On Linux systems, Netdata has support for using the kernel's eBPF interface to monitor performance-related VFS, network, and process events, allowing for insights into process lifetimes and file access patterns. Using this functionality requires additional code managed in a separate repository from the core Netdata agent. You can either install a pre-built copy of the required code, or build it locally.

Installing the pre-built eBPF code

We provide pre-built copies of the eBPF code for 64-bit x86 systems using glibc or musl. To use one of these:

  1. Verify the release version that Netdata expects to be used by checking the contents of packaging/ebpf.version in your Netdata sources.
  2. Go to, select the required release, and download the netdata-kernel-collector-*.tar.xz file for the libc variant your system uses (either rmusl or glibc).
  3. Extract the contents of the archive to a temporary location, and then copy all of the .o and .so.* files and the contents of the library/ directory to /usr/libexec/netdata/plugins.d or the equivalent location for your build of Netdata.

Building the eBPF code locally

Alternatively, you may wish to build the eBPF code locally yourself. For instructions, please consult the README file for our kernel-collector repository, which outlines both the required dependencies, as well as multiple options for building the code.

Do you have any feedback for this page? If so, you can open a new issue on our netdata/learn repository.