Install the relayer

There are two main approaches for obtaining Hermes:

  1. Installation:

    1. If you are running on a Unix machine (Linux/MacOS), then the simplest option is to download the latest binary.
    2. You can also install via Cargo.
  2. Alternatively, build Hermes directly from source.

Install by downloading

Simply head to the GitHub Releases page and download the latest version of Hermes binary matching your platform:

  • MacOS: hermes-v0.9.0-x86_64-apple-darwin.tar.gz (or .zip),
  • Linux: hermes-v0.9.0-x86_64-unknown-linux-gnu.tar.gz (or .zip).

The step-by-step instruction below should carry you through the whole process:

  1. Make the directory where we'll place the binary:

    mkdir -p $HOME/.hermes/bin
  2. Extract the binary archive:

    tar -C $HOME/.hermes/bin/ -vxzf $ARCHIVE_NAME
  3. Update your path, by adding this line in your .bashrc or .zshrc shell configuration file:

    export PATH="$HOME/.hermes/bin:$PATH"

NOTE: The binary may be initially prevented from running if you're on MacOS. See the "Open Anyway" instructions from this support forum if that is the case.

You should now be able to run Hermes by invoking the hermes executable.

hermes version
hermes 0.9.0

Install via Cargo

NOTE: This approach assumes you have installed all the pre-requisites on your machine.

Hermes is packaged in the ibc-relayer-cli Rust crate. To install the latest release of Hermes, run the following command in a terminal:

cargo install ibc-relayer-cli --bin hermes --locked

This will download and build the crate ibc-relayer-cli, and install the hermes binary in $HOME/.cargo/bin.

If you have not installed Rust and Cargo via, you may need to add the $HOME/.cargo/bin directory to your PATH environment variable. For most shells, this can be done by adding the following line to your .bashrc or .zshrc configuration file:

export PATH="$HOME/.cargo/bin:$PATH"

You should now be able to run Hermes by invoking the hermes executable.

hermes version
hermes 0.9.0

Build from source

Clone the repository

Open a terminal and clone the ibc-rs repository:

git clone

Change to the repository directory

cd ibc-rs

Checkout the latest release

Go to the ibc-rs releases page to see what is the most recent release.

Then checkout the release, for example if the most recent release is v0.9.0 then execute the command:

git checkout v0.9.0

Building with cargo build

This command builds all the crates from the ibc-rs repository, namely: the ibc modules crate, ibc-relayer crate, ibc-proto crate, and the ibc-relayer-cli crate. The last of these crates contains the hermes binary.

cargo build --release --bin hermes

By default, Hermes bundles a telemetry service and server. To build Hermes without telemetry support, and get a smaller executable, supply the --no-default-features flag to cargo build:

cargo build --release --no-default-features --bin hermes

If the build is successful, the hermes executable will be located in the following location:


Troubleshooting: In case the cargo build command above fails, as a first course of action we recommend trying to run the same command with the additional locked flag:

cargo build --release --bin hermes --locked

Running for the first time

If you run the hermes without any additional parameters you should see the usage and help information:

hermes 0.9.0
Informal Systems <>

    hermes <SUBCOMMAND>

    help       Get usage information
    config     Validate Hermes configuration file
    keys       Manage keys in the relayer for each chain
    create     Create objects (client, connection, or channel) on chains
    update     Update objects (clients) on chains
    upgrade    Upgrade objects (clients) after chain upgrade
    start      Start the relayer
    query      Query objects from the chain
    tx         Create and send IBC transactions
    listen     Listen to and display IBC events emitted by a chain
    misbehaviour Listen to client update IBC events and handles misbehaviour
    version    Display version information

Creating an alias for the executable

It might be easier to create an alias for hermes so you can just run it by specifying the executable name instead of the whole path. In order to create an alias execute the following command:

alias hermes='cargo run --release --bin hermes --'

Next Steps

Go to the Configuration section to learn how to create a configuration file to be used by Hermes.