Source & Binary

Installing Substrate and Terraform

Most steps in the getting started guide only need to be performed once. This step is the exception. Everyone who’s going to be running Substrate commands, writing Terraform code, or really interacting with AWS in any but the most superficial ways, should follow these steps.


Substrate is distributed directly to customers. You’ll have access to a feed of releases which includes links to download tarballs. Download the latest one for your platform. Then extract it by running a command like this from your downloads directory:

tar xf substrate-version-commit-OS-ARCH.tar.gz

This will create substrate-version-commit-OS-ARCH, which contains bin/substrate (typically all you need), opt/bin/ with some optional extra programs that are part of the Substrate distribution, and src/ with the complete source code for this release of Substrate.

To simply install Substrate in ~/bin in a single command, run a command like this:

tar xf substrate-version-commit-OS-ARCH.tar.gz -C ~/bin --strip-components 2 substrate-version-commit-OS-ARCH/bin/substrate

Each released version and commit is offered in four binary formats; choose the appropriate one for your system. OS is one of “darwin” or “linux” and ARCH is one of “amd64” or “arm64”.

You can install Substrate wherever you like. If ~/bin doesn’t suit you, just ensure the directory where you install it is on your PATH.


Substrate currently requires exactly Terraform 1.2.3. (Substrate asks for Terraform to be upgraded every few releases to stay nearly current with Terraform.)

You can download Terraform 1.2.3 from Hashicorp, with the filenames being parameterized with OS and ARCH the same as Substrate itself. Download and unzip the appropriate build. Move terraform into a directory on your PATH. (It doesn’t have to be the same directory where you placed substrate.)

Opening a fresh AWS account

Configuring Substrate shell completion