4.3 Getting the source code

Downloading the Git repository

In general, developers compile LilyPond from within a local Git repository. Setting up a local Git repository is explained in Setting up.

Downloading a source tarball

Packagers are encouraged to use source tarballs for compiling.

The tarball for the latest stable release is available on the Source page.

The latest source code snapshot is also available as a tarball from the GNU Savannah Git server.

All tagged releases (including legacy stable versions and the most recent development release) are available here:


Download the tarball to your ‘~/src/’ directory, or some other appropriate place.

Note: Be careful where you unpack the tarball! Any subdirectories of the current folder named ‘lilypond-2.23.82/’ are overwritten if there is a name clash with the tarball.

Unpack the tarball with this command:

tar -xzf lilypond-2.23.82.tar.gz

This creates a subdirectory within the current directory called ‘lilypond-2.23.82/’. Once unpacked, the source files occupy about 66MB of disk space.

Windows users wanting to look at the source code may have to download and install the free-software 7zip archiver to extract the tarball.

LilyPond — Contributor’s Guide v2.23.82 (development-branch).