Welcome to the Embark documentation. If you encounter any problems when using Embark, have a look at the troubleshooting guide, raise an issue on GitHub or ask in the Gitter Chatroom.

What is Embark?

Embark is a fast, simple and powerful framework to develop and deploy Decentralized Applications (DApps).

Embark currently integrates with EVM blockchains (Ethereum), Decentralized Storages (IPFS), and Decentralized communication platforms (Whisper and Orbit). Swarm is supported for deployment.

With Embark you can:

Blockchain (Ethereum)

  • Automatically deploy contracts and make them available in your JS code. Embark watches for changes, and if you update a contract, Embark will automatically redeploy the contracts (if needed) and the dapp.
  • Contracts are available in JS with Promises.
  • Do Test Driven Development with Contracts using Javascript.
  • Keep track of deployed contracts; deploy only when truly needed.
  • Manage different chains (e.g testnet, private net, livenet)
  • Easily manage complex systems of interdependent contracts.

Decentralized Storage (IPFS)

  • Easily Store & Retrieve Data on the DApp through EmbarkJS. Including uploading and retrieving files.
  • Deploy the full application to IPFS or Swarm.

Decentralized Communication (Whisper, Orbit)

  • Easily send/receive messages through channels in P2P through Whisper or Orbit.

Web Technologies

  • Integrate with any web technology including React, Foundation, etc..
  • Use any build pipeline or tool you wish, including grunt, gulp and webpack.


It only takes a few minutes to set up Embark. If you encounter a problem and can’t find the solution here, please submit a GitHub issue and We’ll try to solve it.


Installing Embark is quite easy. However, you do need to have a couple of other things installed first:

We recommend installing node using NVM

After installing nodejs you can install embark with:

$ npm -g install embark
Do not use sudo

Avoid using sudo to install NodeJS or Embark as it can cause permission errors down the line.

With Ethereum Support

If you want to use Embark with Ethereum and want embark to run a node for you (with the embark blockchain command), then you need to install Go-Ethrereum 1.6.7 or higher.

On macOS:

$ brew tap ethereum/ethereum
$ brew install ethereum

On linux:

$ sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:ethereum/ethereum
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install ethereum

Alternatively you can also install a simulator such as testrpc:

$ npm -g install ethereumjs-testrpc

With IPFS Support

To use IPFS you need first to install a IPFS node and run it. There two available, go-ipfs and js-ipfs.


Installation instructions are available here.

Once installed and setup you will need to make sure the headers are setup
properly for your app.

$ ipfs config --json API.HTTPHeaders.Access-Control-Allow-Origin "[\"\"]"
$ ipfs config --json API.HTTPHeaders.Access-Control-Allow-Credentials "[\"true\"]"
$ ipfs config --json API.HTTPHeaders.Access-Control-Allow-Methods "[\"PUT\", \"POST\", \"GET\"]"

You would want to launch it with: ipfs daemon --enable-pubsub-experiment