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ejabberd Community Edition

CI Coverage Status Translation status Hex version

ejabberd is a distributed, fault-tolerant technology that allows the creation of large-scale instant messaging applications. The server can reliably support thousands of simultaneous users on a single node and has been designed to provide exceptional standards of fault tolerance. As an open source technology, based on industry-standards, ejabberd can be used to build bespoke solutions very cost effectively.

Key Features

  • Cross-platform
    ejabberd runs under Microsoft Windows and Unix-derived systems such as Linux, FreeBSD and NetBSD.

  • Distributed
    You can run ejabberd on a cluster of machines and all of them will serve the same XMPP domain(s). When you need more capacity you can simply add a new cheap node to your cluster. Accordingly, you do not need to buy an expensive high-end machine to support tens of thousands concurrent users.

  • Fault-tolerant
    You can deploy an ejabberd cluster so that all the information required for a properly working service will be replicated permanently on all nodes. This means that if one of the nodes crashes, the others will continue working without disruption. In addition, nodes also can be added or replaced on the fly.

  • Administrator-friendly
    ejabberd is built on top of the Open Source Erlang. As a result you do not need to install an external database, an external web server, amongst others because everything is already included, and ready to run out of the box. Other administrator benefits include:

    • Comprehensive documentation.
    • Straightforward installers for Linux.
    • Docker packaging to help with deploy / development on Linux, Windows or MacOS.
    • Deb and RPM packaging to support most Linux distributions.
    • Web administration.
    • Shared roster groups.
    • Command line administration tool.
    • Can integrate with existing authentication mechanisms.
    • Capability to send announce messages.
  • Internationalized
    ejabberd leads in internationalization. Hence it is very well suited in a globalized world. Related features are:

    • Translated to 25 languages.
    • Support for IDNA.
  • Open Standards
    ejabberd is the first Open Source XMPP server claiming to fully comply to the XMPP standard.

    • Fully XMPP-compliant.
    • XML-based protocol.
    • Many protocols supported.

Additional Features

Moreover, ejabberd comes with a wide range of other state-of-the-art features:

  • Modularity

    • Load only the modules you want.
    • Extend ejabberd with your own custom modules.
  • Security

    • SASL and STARTTLS for c2s and s2s connections.
    • STARTTLS and Dialback s2s connections.
    • Web Admin accessible via HTTPS secure access.
  • Databases

    • Internal database for fast deployment (Mnesia).
    • Native MySQL support.
    • Native PostgreSQL support.
    • ODBC data storage support.
    • Microsoft SQL Server support.
  • Authentication

    • Internal authentication.
    • PAM, LDAP and ODBC.
    • External authentication script.
  • Others

    • Support for virtual hosting.
    • Compressing XML streams with Stream Compression (XEP-0138).
    • Statistics via Statistics Gathering (XEP-0039).
    • IPv6 support both for c2s and s2s connections.
    • Multi-User Chat module with support for clustering and HTML logging.
    • Users Directory based on users vCards.
    • Publish-Subscribe component with support for Personal Eventing.
    • Support for web clients: HTTP Polling and HTTP Binding (BOSH).
    • Component support: interface with networks such as AIM, ICQ and MSN.

Quickstart guide

0. Requirements

To compile ejabberd you need:

  • GNU Make.
  • GCC.
  • Libexpat ≥ 1.95.
  • Libyaml ≥ 0.1.4.
  • Erlang/OTP ≥ 19.3.
  • OpenSSL ≥ 1.0.0.
  • Zlib ≥ 1.2.3, for Stream Compression support (XEP-0138). Optional.
  • PAM library. Optional. For Pluggable Authentication Modules (PAM).
  • ImageMagick's Convert program and Ghostscript fonts. Optional. For CAPTCHA challenges.
  • Elixir ≥ 1.10.3. Optional. Alternative to build ejabberd

If your system splits packages in libraries and development headers, you must install the development packages also.

1. Compile and install on *nix systems

To compile ejabberd, execute the following commands. The first one is only necessary if your source tree didn't come with a configure script (In this case you need autoconf installed).


To install ejabberd, run this command with system administrator rights (root user):

sudo make install

These commands will:

  • Install the configuration files in /etc/ejabberd/
  • Install ejabberd binary, header and runtime files in /lib/ejabberd/
  • Install the administration script: /sbin/ejabberdctl
  • Install ejabberd documentation in /share/doc/ejabberd/
  • Create a spool directory: /var/lib/ejabberd/
  • Create a directory for log files: /var/log/ejabberd/

2. Start ejabberd

You can use the ejabberdctl command line administration script to start and stop ejabberd. For example:

ejabberdctl start

For detailed information please refer to the ejabberd Documentation

3. Use ejabberd locally

Alternatively, you can setup ejabberd without installing in your system:

./configure --with-rebar=./rebar3
make dev

Or, if you have Elixir available and plan to develop Elixir code:

./configure --with-rebar=mix
make dev

Check the full list of targets:

make help


In order to assist in the development of ejabberd, and particularly the execution of the test suite, a Vagrant environment is available at https://github.com/processone/ejabberd-vagrant-dev.

To start ejabberd in development mode from the repository directory, you can type a command like:

EJABBERD_CONFIG_PATH=ejabberd.yml erl -pa ebin -pa deps/*/ebin -pa test -pa deps/elixir/lib/*/ebin/ -s ejabberd


Using any gettext editor, you can improve the translation files found in priv/msgs/*.po, and then submit your changes.

Alternatively, a simple way to improve translations is using our Weblate project: https://hosted.weblate.org/projects/ejabberd/ejabberd-po/