Package your Electron app into OS-specific bundles (
Electron Packager is a command line tool and Node.js library that bundles Electron-based application source code with a renamed Electron executable and supporting files into folders ready for distribution.
For creating distributables like installers and Linux packages, consider using either Electron Forge (which uses Electron Packager internally), or one of the related Electron tools, which utilizes Electron Packager-created folders as a basis.
Note that packaged Electron applications can be relatively large. A zipped, minimal Electron
application is approximately the same size as the zipped prebuilt binary for a given target
platform, target arch, and Electron version
Electron Packager is known to run on the following host platforms:
- Windows (32/64 bit)
- macOS (formerly known as OS X)
- Linux (x86/x86_64)
It generates executables/bundles for the following target platforms:
- Windows (also known as
win32, for x86, x86_64, and arm64 architectures)
- macOS (also known as
darwin) / Mac App Store (also known as
mas)* (for x86_64 and arm64 architectures)
- Linux (for x86, x86_64, armv7l, arm64, and mips64el architectures)
* Note for macOS / Mac App Store target bundles: the
.app bundle can only be signed when building on a host macOS platform.
This module requires Node.js 10.0 or higher to run.
npm install --save-dev electron-packager
It is not recommended to install
Building Windows apps from non-Windows platforms
Building an Electron app for the Windows target platform requires editing the
Currently, Electron Packager uses
node-rcedit to accomplish
this. A Windows executable is bundled in that Node package and needs to be run in order for this
functionality to work, so on non-Windows host platforms (not including WSL),
Wine 1.6 or later needs to be installed. On macOS, it is installable
From the Command Line
Running Electron Packager from the command line has this basic form:
npx electron-packager <sourcedir> <appname> --platform=<platform> --arch=<arch> [optional flags...]
npx can be substituted for
npm exec depending on what package manager and
the version you have installed.
- Find or download the correct release of Electron
- Use that version of Electron to create an app in
<out>/<appname>-<platform>-<arch>(this can be customized via an optional flag)
--arch can be omitted, in two cases:
- If you specify
--allinstead, bundles for all valid combinations of target platforms/architectures will be created.
- Otherwise, a single bundle for the host platform/architecture will be created.
appname is omitted, this will use the name specified by "productName" or "name" in the nearest package.json.
Characters in the Electron app name which are not allowed in all target platforms' filenames
/), will be replaced by hyphens (
You should be able to launch the app on the platform you built for. If not, check your settings and try again.
Be careful not to include
node_modules you don't want into your final app. If you put them in
devDependencies section of
package.json, by default none of the modules related to those
dependencies will be copied in the app bundles. (This behavior can be turned off with the
prune: false API option or
--no-prune CLI flag.) In addition, folders like
node_modules/.bin will be ignored by default. You can use
--ignore to ignore files and folders
via a regular expression (not a glob pattern).
Let's assume that you have made an app based on the electron-quick-start repository on a macOS host platform with the following file structure:
foobar ├── package.json ├── index.html ├── […other files, like the app's LICENSE…] └── script.js
…and that the following is true:
electron-packageris installed locally
package.jsonhas been set to
electronmodule is in the
package.json, and set to the exact version of
npm installfor the
Foo Barapp has been run at least once
When one runs the following command for the first time in the
npx electron-packager .
electron-packager will do the following:
- Use the current directory for the
- Infer the
- Infer the
- Infer the
archfrom the host, in this example,
- Download the darwin x64 build of Electron 1.4.15 (and cache the downloads in
- Build the macOS
foobar/Foo Bar-darwin-x64/(since an
outdirectory was not specified, it used the current working directory)
The file structure now looks like:
foobar ├── Foo Bar-darwin-x64 │ ├── Foo Bar.app │ │ └── […Mac app contents…] │ ├── LICENSE [the Electron license] │ └── version ├── […other application bundles, like "Foo Bar-win32-x64" (sans quotes)…] ├── package.json ├── index.html ├── […other files, like the app's LICENSE…] └── script.js
Foo Bar.app folder generated can be executed by a system running macOS, which will start the packaged Electron app. This is also true of the Windows x64 build on a system running a new enough version of Windows for a 64-bit system (via
Foo Bar-win32-x64/Foo Bar.exe), and so on.
- Electron Forge - creates, builds, and distributes modern Electron applications
- electron-packager-interactive - an interactive CLI for electron-packager
- grunt-electron - grunt plugin for electron-packager
- electron-installer-zip - creates symlink-compatible ZIP files
- electron-winstaller - Squirrel.Windows-based installer from the Electron maintainers group
- electron-windows-store - creates an AppX package for the Windows Store
- electron-wix-msi - creates traditional MSI installers
- electron-installer-windows - alternative Squirrel.Windows-based installer
- electron-installer-dmg - creates a DMG
- electron-installer-debian - creates a DEB file
- electron-installer-redhat - creates an RPM
- electron-installer-flatpak - creates a Flatpak file
- electron-installer-snap - creates a Snap file
These Node modules utilize Electron Packager API hooks:
- electron-packager-languages - sets the locales available to Electron when packaged, which is used by the Mac App Store, among other places
- electron-packager-plugin-non-proprietary-codecs-ffmpeg - replaces the normal version of FFmpeg in Electron with a version without proprietary codecs
- electron-rebuild - rebuilds native Node.js modules against the packaged Electron version