ZeroBrane Studio can be installed in three different ways:

  1. Download and install one of the packages provided on the download page.
  2. Download the snapshot of the repository.
  3. Clone the repository.

The IDE can be installed into and run from any directory. No additional installation steps are needed for repository clones and snapshots (you only need to unpack the files into a destination directory). No compilation is needed as the binary components are already included, although the scripts to compile required libraries for Windows, macOS, and Linux platforms are available in the build/ directory.


The setup script installs the IDE into the specified directory. The only modification that is done to the system outside of the installation directory is adding a link to the executable to the startup menu.

To uninstall the IDE you can simply remove the directory where it was installed and delete the link added to the startup menu.


The IDE can be installed by dragging its directory icon from the downloaded dmg installer file into /Applications or any other directory. You can also execute the IDE directly from the mounted dmg file, but you will not be able to make modifications to the sample scripts in the myprograms directory.

To uninstall the IDE you can move the application ( from the Applications directory to the Trash.

Upgrade warning

Make sure to save your ZeroBrane Studio system settings (Edit | Preferences | Settings: System) before upgrading as those are saved inside the application directory and will be lost during the upgrade. As an alternative, you can move those system settings to user settings (Edit | Preferences | Settings: User) as those are not affected by the upgrade process.


The installation using the setup script requires administrative privileges. You need to execute the downloaded script as a shell script to install the IDE. If you want to install the IDE into a user directory, use the second or third option.

To uninstall the IDE you can run zbstudio-uninstall command.

If you don’t have sudo installed on your system, or the installation fails for some other reason, run the installer with the --keep option, and move the resulting extracted files to the desired directory. Then update the cd (change directory) command in the script to match the directory where you moved the program. You may need to adjust permissions and create desktop entries manually.

If you are using a server version of Ubuntu, you may need to run sudo apt-get install libgtk2.0-0 xdg-utils. If you are using RedHat Enterprise Linux version, you may need to run sudo yum install xdg-utils dejavu-lgc-sans-fonts.

what a breath of fresh air. (doctorbling)

IMHO, ZBS is the fastest, most-flexible, best-thought-out IDE AND Debugger I've used since I began coding professionally in 1980. (Michael Berlyn)

Love ZeroBrane Studio. Lightweight. Works. Powerful. (Ross Berteig)

Love the debugger, saving my life. (Troy Sandal)

Thanks again for your awesome IDE. I've moved over to it, forsaking my previous investment in Decoda! (Stephen Nichols)

my kids love ZeroBrane. (Phil Hagelberg)

ZBS is beautiful experience. I am using it usually 10 hrs every day w/o problems. (Srdjan Markovic)

...heartily recommend it. (stun)

I love ZBS. I use it for all of the work I’ve started doing in Lua...! This IDE is fantastic! (Eddie Dover)

ZeroBrane Studio has got a working debugger, full IDE feature set, small footprint, and is completely customizable in lua. You have no idea how excited I was to find this little gem! (Jonathan Shieh)

It's a joy to use;... totally rock solid. (Jeff Smith)

Complaining about Zerobrane is like complaining that a beautiful spring day is a couple degrees too warm. (Jim Burnes)