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Here's how you can install Crow on your favorite GNU/Linux distro.

Getting Crow


  • C++ compiler with at least C++11 support.
  • boost library & development headers (1.64 or later).
  • (optional) ZLib for HTTP Compression.
  • (optional) OpenSSL for HTTPS support.
  • (optional) CMake and Python3 to build tests and/or examples.


Crow's CI uses g++-9.3 and clang-7.0 running on AMD64 (x86_64) and ARM64v8 architectures.

Using a package Manager

You can install Crow on GNU/Linux as a pre-made package

Simply download Crow's .deb file from the release section and Install it.

Crow is available for Arch based distros through the AUR package crow.

Release package

Crow provides an archive containing the framework and CMake files, just copy the include folder to /usr/local/include and lib folder to /usr/local/lib.

You can also download the crow_all.h file and simply include that into your project.

Installing from source

Using CMake

  1. Download Crow's source code (Either through github's UI or by using
    git clone
  2. Run mkdir build inside of crow's source directory.
  3. Navigate to the new "build" directory and run the following:
  4. Run make install.


You can ignore -DCROW_BUILD_EXAMPLES=OFF -DCROW_BUILD_TESTS=OFF if you want to build the Examples and Unit Tests.


Crow can be installed manually on your Linux computer.

Multiple header files

Copy Crow's include directory to your project's include directory.

Copy Crow's include directory to the /usr/local/include directory.

Single header (crow_all.h)


crow_all.h is recommended only for small, possibly single source file projects, and ideally should not be installed on your system.

navigate to the scripts directory and run ./ ../include crow_all.h. This will generate a crow_all.h file that you can use in your projects.


You can also include or exclude middlewares from your crow_all.h by using -i or -e followed by the middleware header file names separated by a comma (e.g. ../include crow_all.h -e cookie_parser to exclude the cookie parser middleware).

Compiling your project

Using CMake

In order to get your CMake project to work with Crow, all you need are the following lines in your CMakeLists.txt:

target_link_libraries(your_project PUBLIC Crow::Crow)
From there CMake should handle compiling and linking your project.

Directly using a compiler

All you need to do is run the following command:

g++ main.cpp -lpthread
You can use arguments like -DCROW_ENABLE_DEBUG, -DCROW_ENABLE_COMPRESSION -lz for HTTP Compression, or -DCROW_ENABLE_SSL -lssl for HTTPS support, or even replace g++ with clang++.


If you're using a version of boost prior to 1.69, you'll need to add the argument -lboost_system in order for you Crow application to compile correctly.