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This project provides an Installer for Ruby-2.4 and newer on Windows based on the MSYS2 toolchain. It is the successor to the MSYS1 based RubyInstaller which is used for Ruby-2.3 and older. It is licensed under the 3-clause Modified BSD License.

In contrast to the old RubyInstaller it does not provide its own DevKit, but makes use of the rich set of MINGW libraries from the MSYS2 project. It therefore integrates well into MSYS2 after installation on the target system to provide a build-and-runtime environment for installation of gems with C-extensions. This and more changes are documented in the CHANGELOG.

Using the Installer on a target system

The base ruby installation packaged into the installer file is enough to use pure Ruby gems or fat binary gems for x64-mingw32 or x86-mingw32. However in the last step of the installation wizard the ridk install command can be executed. It downloads and installs all necessary MSYS2 build tools that are typically required to compile C based ruby gems. Some gems require additional packages, which can be installed per pacman. See below.

The ridk command

ridk is a cmd/powershell script which can be used to install MSYS2 components, to issue MSYS commands like pacman or to set environment variables for using MSYS2 development tools from the running shell.

See ridk help for further options:

      C:/Ruby24-x64/bin/ridk.cmd [option]

      install                   Install MSYS2 and MINGW dev tools
      exec <command>            Execute a command within MSYS2 context
      enable                    Set environment variables for MSYS2
      disable                   Unset environment variables for MSYS2
      version                   Print RubyInstaller and MSYS2 versions
      help | --help | -? | /?   Display this help and exit

Setup MSYS2 without ridk

MSYS2 can also be installed manually like so (as an alternative to ridk install):

  • Install the latest MSYS2 for x64 or x86 via installer from
  • Install development tools via MSYS2/MINGW shell window: sh pacman -Sy pacman pacman -S base-devel mingw-w64-i686-toolchain # for 32 bit RubyInstaller pacman -S base-devel mingw-w64-x86_64-toolchain # for 64 bit RubyInstaller

Install gems with C-extensions and additional library dependencies

The base MSYS2 setup includes compilers and other build tools, but doesn't include libraries or DLLs that some gems require as their dependencies. Fortunatelly many of the required libraries are available through the MSYS2 repositories. They can be installed per ridk exec pacman -S mingw-w64-x86_64-libraryname similar to apt-get on Linux. Exchange the prefix mingw-w64-x86_64 by mingw-w64-i686 for the 32-bit RubyInstaller.

For instance these popular gems can be installed like so from the source gem:

  • To install sqlite3 gem: sh ridk exec pacman -S mingw-w64-x86_64-sqlite3 gem install sqlite3 --platform ruby
  • To install nokogiri gem: sh ridk exec pacman -S mingw-w64-x86_64-libxslt gem install nokogiri --platform ruby -- --use-system-libraries

Some gems are properly labeled to install dependent libraries per pacman. See the wiki how such a label can be added to gems. Also refer the FAQ for additional install recommendations.

Building the Installer

This repository provides the packaging tasks to build RubyInstaller setup executables and 7zip files. It doesn't compile any sources, but makes use of the MSYS2-MINGW repository and the RubyInstaller2 pacman repository to download binaries and dependent libraries.

Automatic build on Appveyor

The installer is regularly built on AppVeyor for each push to the github repository. In addition to this, a daily build of the latest ruby development snapshot is compiled and packaged as RubyInstaller and RubyBundle (with integrated MSYS) files. It can be downloaded from AppVeyor as build artifacts as well. AppVeyor also executes the installer and runs all tests on it, so that we are notified about breaking changes.

Build RubyInstaller2 on your own machine:

  • Make sure you have a working RubyInstaller-2.4 and Git installation
  • Install the MSYS2 environment per ridk install with default options
  • Install the latest Inno-Setup (unicode) from
  • Run cmd.exe and add iscc.exe to PATH: sh set PATH=%PATH%;"c:\Program Files (x86)\Inno Setup 5"
  • Clone RubyInstaller2 and build all RubyInstaller versions for x86 and x64: sh git clone cd rubyinstaller2 bundle install bundle exec rake
  • If everything works well, you will find the final setup and archive files:
    • packages/rubyinstaller/recipes/installer-inno/rubyinstaller-<VERSION>-<ARCH>.exe
    • packages/rubyinstaller/recipes/archive-7z/rubyinstaller-<VERSION>-<ARCH>.7z
  • Also try rake -T to see the available build targets.

Known Issues

  • Avoid running this project in a PATH containing spaces.
  • Also refer to the issue list.