How to install LXD#

The easiest way to install LXD is to install one of the available packages, but you can also install LXD from the sources.

Installing LXD from packages#

The LXD daemon only works on Linux but the client tool (lxc) is available on most platforms.






snap install lxd



choco install lxc



brew install lxc

More instructions on installing LXD for a wide variety of Linux distributions and operating systems can be found on our website.

Install LXD from source#

We recommend having the latest versions of liblxc (>= 4.0.0 required) available for LXD development. Additionally, LXD requires Golang 1.18 or later to work. On Ubuntu, you can get those with:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install acl attr autoconf automake dnsmasq-base git golang libacl1-dev libcap-dev liblxc1 liblxc-dev libsqlite3-dev libtool libudev-dev liblz4-dev libuv1-dev make pkg-config rsync squashfs-tools tar tcl xz-utils ebtables

There are a few storage drivers for LXD besides the default dir driver. Installing these tools adds a bit to initramfs and may slow down your host boot, but are needed if you’d like to use a particular driver:

sudo apt install lvm2 thin-provisioning-tools
sudo apt install btrfs-progs

To run the test suite, you’ll also need:

sudo apt install curl gettext jq sqlite3 socat bind9-dnsutils

From source: Build the latest version#

These instructions for building from source are suitable for individual developers who want to build the latest version of LXD, or build a specific release of LXD which may not be offered by their Linux distribution. Source builds for integration into Linux distributions are not covered here and may be covered in detail in a separate document in the future.

git clone
cd lxd

This will download the current development tree of LXD and place you in the source tree. Then proceed to the instructions below to actually build and install LXD.

From source: Build a release#

The LXD release tarballs bundle a complete dependency tree as well as a local copy of libraft and libdqlite for LXD’s database setup.

tar zxvf lxd-4.18.tar.gz
cd lxd-4.18

This will unpack the release tarball and place you inside of the source tree. Then proceed to the instructions below to actually build and install LXD.

Start the build#

The actual building is done by two separate invocations of the Makefile: make deps – which builds libraries required by LXD – and make, which builds LXD itself. At the end of make deps, a message will be displayed which will specify environment variables that should be set prior to invoking make. As new versions of LXD are released, these environment variable settings may change, so be sure to use the ones displayed at the end of the make deps process, as the ones below (shown for example purposes) may not exactly match what your version of LXD requires:

We recommend having at least 2GB of RAM to allow the build to complete.

user@host:~$ make deps
...make[1]: Leaving directory '/root/go/deps/dqlite'# environment Please set the following in your environment (possibly ~/.bashrc)#  export CGO_CFLAGS="${CGO_CFLAGS} -I$(go env GOPATH)/deps/dqlite/include/ -I$(go env GOPATH)/deps/raft/include/"#  export CGO_LDFLAGS="${CGO_LDFLAGS} -L$(go env GOPATH)/deps/dqlite/.libs/ -L$(go env GOPATH)/deps/raft/.libs/"#  export LD_LIBRARY_PATH="$(go env GOPATH)/deps/dqlite/.libs/:$(go env GOPATH)/deps/raft/.libs/:${LD_LIBRARY_PATH}"#  export CGO_LDFLAGS_ALLOW="(-Wl,-wrap,pthread_create)|(-Wl,-z,now)"
user@host:~$ make

From source: Install#

Once the build completes, you simply keep the source tree, add the directory referenced by $(go env GOPATH)/bin to your shell path, and set the LD_LIBRARY_PATH variable printed by make deps to your environment. This might look something like this for a ~/.bashrc file:

export PATH="${PATH}:$(go env GOPATH)/bin"
export LD_LIBRARY_PATH="$(go env GOPATH)/deps/dqlite/.libs/:$(go env GOPATH)/deps/raft/.libs/:${LD_LIBRARY_PATH}"

Now, the lxd and lxc binaries will be available to you and can be used to set up LXD. The binaries will automatically find and use the dependencies built in $(go env GOPATH)/deps thanks to the LD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variable.

Machine setup#

You’ll need sub{u,g}ids for root, so that LXD can create the unprivileged containers:

echo "root:1000000:1000000000" | sudo tee -a /etc/subuid /etc/subgid

Now you can run the daemon (the --group sudo bit allows everyone in the sudo group to talk to LXD; you can create your own group if you want):

sudo -E PATH=${PATH} LD_LIBRARY_PATH=${LD_LIBRARY_PATH} $(go env GOPATH)/bin/lxd --group sudo


If newuidmap/newgidmap tools are present on your system and /etc/subuid, etc/subgid exist, they must be configured to allow the root user a contiguous range of at least 10M UID/GID.

Upgrade LXD#

After upgrading LXD to a newer version, LXD might need to update its database to a new schema. This update happens automatically when the daemon starts up after a LXD upgrade. A backup of the database before the update is stored in the same location as the active database (for example, at /var/snap/lxd/common/lxd/database for the snap installation).


After a schema update, older versions of LXD might regard the database as invalid. That means that downgrading LXD might render your LXD installation unusable.

In that case, if you need to downgrade, restore the database backup before starting the downgrade.