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Developer setup for Mattermost mobile apps

The following instructions apply to the mobile apps for iOS and Android built in React Native. Download the iOS version here and the Android version here. Source code can be found at the GitHub Mattermost Mobile app repository.

If you run into any issues getting your environment set up, check the Troubleshooting section of the product docs for common solutions.

Environment setup 

The following instructions apply to both iOS and Android mobile apps. On macOS, we recommend using Homebrew as a package manager.

Install NodeJS and NPM 

We recommend using NodeJS v18 and npm v8. Many of our team use nvm to manage npm and NodeJS versions.

To install NVM using Homebrew, open a terminal and execute:

brew install nvm

To install NodeJS v18 LTS using NVM, open a new terminal and execute:

nvm install --lts=hydrogen

There are three available options for installing NodeJS on Linux:

  • Using NVM by following the instructions here.
  • Install using your distribution’s package manager.
  • Download and install the package from the NodeJS website.

Install Watchman 

Watchman is a file watching program. When a file changes, Watchman triggers an action, such as re-running a build command if a source file has changed.

The minimum required version of Watchman is 4.9.0.

To install Watchman using Homebrew, open a terminal and execute:

brew install watchman

Download the latest package from here.

Install react-native-cli tools 

npm -g install react-native-cli

Install Git 

To install Git using Homebrew, open a terminal and execute:

brew install git
Some distributions come with Git preinstalled but you’ll most likely have to install it yourself. For most distributions the package is simply called git.

Additional setup for iOS (macOS) 

Install XCode 

Install Xcode to build and run the app on iOS. The minimum required version is 11.0.

Install Ruby 

A version of Ruby is automatically installed on macOS, but React Native development requires Ruby 2.7.6. You can check the current version of Ruby by running the following command.

ruby --version

If it isn’t, we recommend using Ruby Version Manager or your preferred package manager to install the required version. The steps below are for using RVM.

  1. Install the GPG keys for RVM using the command found here.
    1. If you don’t have the gpg command, you can install it using Homebrew by running.
      brew install gnupg
  2. Install the stable version of RVM using the following command.
    \curl -sSL https://get.rvm.io | bash -s stable --ruby
  3. To load RVM, either open a new terminal or run the following command.
    source ~/.rvm/scripts/rvm
  4. Install the required version of Ruby
    rvm install 3.0.6
  5. (Optional) If you don’t need to use a different version of Ruby for anything else, you’ll want to change the default version of Ruby. Without this, you’ll need to run rvm use 3.0.6 any time you want to work on the mobile app.
    rvm alias create default 3.0.6

Additional setup for Android 

Download and install Android Studio or Android SDK CLI tools 

Download and install the Android Studio app or the Android SDK command line tools

Environment variables 

Make sure you have the following environment variables configured for your platform:

  • Set ANDROID_HOME to where Android SDK is located (likely /Users/<username>/Library/Android/sdk or /home/<username>/Android/Sdk)
  • Make sure your PATH includes ANDROID_HOME/tools and ANDROID_HOME/platform-tools

On Mac, this usually requires adding the following lines to your ~/.bash_profile file:

export ANDROID_HOME=$HOME/Library/Android/sdk
export PATH=$ANDROID_HOME/emulator:$ANDROID_HOME/platform-tools:$ANDROID_HOME/tools:$PATH

Then reload your bash configuration:

source ~/.bash_profile

On Linux the home folder is located under /home/<username> which results in a slightly different path:

export ANDROID_HOME=/home/<username>/Android/Sdk
export PATH=$ANDROID_HOME/platform-tools:$PATH

Then reload your configuration

source ~/.bash_profile

Install the SDKs and SDK tools 

In the SDK Manager using Android Studio or the Android SDK command line tool, ensure the following are installed:

  • SDK Tools (you may have to select Show Package Details to expand packages):

    • Android SDK Build-Tools 31
    • Android Emulator
    • Android SDK Platform-Tools
    • Android SDK Tools
    • Google Play services
    • Intel x86 Emulator Accelerator (HAXM installer)
    • Support Repository
      • Android Support Repository
      • Google Repository


  • SDK Platforms (you may have to select Show Package Details to expand packages)

    • Android 12 or above
      • Google APIs
      • SDK Platform
        • Android SDK Platform 31 or above
      • Intel or Google Play Intel x86 Atom_64 System Image
    • Any other API version that you want to test


Obtain the source code 

In order to develop and build the Mattermost mobile apps, you’ll need to get a copy of the source code. Forking the mattermost-mobile repository will also make it easy to contribute your work back to the project in the future.

  1. Fork the mattermost-mobile repository on GitHub.

  2. Clone your fork locally:

    a. Open a terminal

    b. Change to a directory you want to hold your local copy

    c. Run git clone https://github.com/<username>/mattermost-mobile.git if you want to use HTTPS, or git clone git@github.com:<username>/mattermost-mobile.git if you want to use SSH

  3. Change the directory to mattermost-mobile.

    cd mattermost-mobile
  4. Install the project dependencies with npm install

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