For Linux you need development packages for:

  • Wayland
  • x11, xkbcommon
  • libXcursor

Depending on your distribution, you may also need to install a Vulkan driver for best performance. Distributions like Arch do not do this automatically. You can check if you have working Vulkan support with the vulkaninfo command.

Fedora 35+

On Fedora 35 and newer, install the dependencies with the command:

dnf install gcc pkg-config wayland-devel libX11-devel libxkbcommon-x11-devel mesa-libGLES-devel mesa-libEGL-devel libXcursor-devel vulkan-headers

Ubuntu 18.04+

On Ubuntu 18.04 and newer, use:

apt install gcc pkg-config libwayland-dev libx11-dev libx11-xcb-dev libxkbcommon-x11-dev libgles2-mesa-dev libegl1-mesa-dev libffi-dev libxcursor-dev libvulkan-dev


On a system with Nix 2.4 or later, Gio includes a Nix flake for setting up a development environment:

alias nix='nix --extra-experimental-features "nix-command flakes"'
nix develop sourcehut:~eliasnaur/gio

The environment can also be applied to the current shell, which is useful in combination with direnv:

source <(nix print-dev-env sourcehut:~eliasnaur/gio)


To test whether the installation works, run:

go run

You can build Gio programs without X11 support with the nox11 build tag:

go run --tags nox11

To build Gio programs without Wayland support use nowayland build tag:

go run --tags nowayland