jq is written in C and has no runtime dependencies, so it should be possible to build it for nearly any platform. Prebuilt binaries are available for Linux, OS X and Windows.
The binaries should just run, but on OS X and Linux you may need to make them executable first using
chmod +x jq.
jq is licensed under the MIT license. For all of the gory details, read the file
COPYING in the source distribution.
For Arch users, a PKGBUILD for jq-1.1 is in the AUR, as well as a PKGBUILD for the HEAD of master (jq-git). You can install them using Yaourt or manually by following instructions on Arch Linux’s Wiki.
jq 1.4 is in Debian
jq 1.3.2 is in the official Fedora repository. You can install using
sudo yum install jq
brew install jq using homebrew
You can build it using the usual
./configure && make && sudo
make install rigmarole.
If you’re interested in using the lastest development version, try:
git clone https://github.com/stedolan/jq.git cd jq autoreconf -i ./configure make sudo make install
To build it from a git clone, you’ll need to install a few packages first:
For Linux systems, these will all be in your system’s package manager, and if you do development on the machine they’re most likely already installed.
On OS X, these are all included in Apple’s command line tools, which can be installed from Xcode. However, you may find that you need a newer version of Bison than the one provided by Apple. This can be found in Homebrew or MacPorts.
bison are used to generate the lexer and parser for jq, and some python scripts generate the UTF8 encoding tables needed for JSON parsing.
jq’s documentation is compiled into static HTML using Bonsai. To view the documentation locally, run
rake serve (or
bundle exec rake serve) from the docs/ subdirectory. To build the docs just
rake build from the docs subdirectory. You’ll need a few Ruby dependencies, which can be installed by following the instructions in
The man page is built by
make jq.1, or just
make, also from the YAML docs, and you’ll still need the Ruby dependencies to build the manpage.