Install Elixir

In order to start learning Elixir, you need the ability to play with Elixir. Please make sure you have Elixir installed on your system before you continue.

Read here for the Official documentation for installing Elixir.

Follow my guide to installing Elixir using asdf-vm.

Asdf is a version manager tool on MacOS and Linux that installs and manages multiple versions of Elixir and Erlang. I recommend this to ensure you have compatible versions of Elixir and Erlang to give you the best development experience.

With Elixir installed your machine, from a command terminal, you should be able to execute the -v or “version” command to see that it is ready to go.

$ elixir -v
Erlang/OTP 22 [erts-10.5.5] [source] [64-bit] [smp:4:4] [ds:4:4:10] [async-threads:1] [hipe]

Elixir 1.9.4 (compiled with Erlang/OTP 22)

The exact version isn’t important. Your’s will likely be newer than this one which is awesome!

Need a code editor?

Do you need an editor to use for writing your new Elixir code? If you don’t already have an editor in mind, check out this post to get you started!


  1. javanoclaw on March 21, 2020 at 3:12 am


    • brainlid on March 21, 2020 at 7:19 am

      Yes. The Atom Editor is also a text editor option. I don’t directly recommend it because I don’t stay current on how to do Elixir development with it. I’ve written previously about Atom but that information is out of date now. Since both VS Code and Atom are owned by Github, both are Electron based, both are free, and VS Code appears to be getting more focused development, I chose to focus on VS Code. Of course you are free to choose any editor you like! I have friends that use Vim, Emacs, Atom, VS Code, and JetBrains. Options are good! However when someone is coming new to Elixir, too many options are overwhelming.

  2. Maksym Kosenko on October 18, 2021 at 3:11 pm

    I use VS code with Elixir_ls extension and I wonder if I need to exclude ‘.elixir_ls’ from git in my projects, i.e. to add it to ‘.gitignore’ file?!

    • Mark Ericksen on October 18, 2021 at 3:14 pm

      Yes, ignoring the `.elixir_ls` directory is a good idea! I do that too.

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