1. Platform packages
  2. Linux
    1. Arch Linux
    2. Debian Linux
    3. Fedora Linux (and RHEL derivatives, via EPEL)
    4. Ubuntu Linux
    5. Gentoo Linux
    6. OpenSUSE
    7. Mageia
    8. Embedded Linux
      1. Yocto/OpenEmbedded
      2. OpenMoko
      3. Maemo 5
  3. Mac OS X
    1. MacPorts
      1. Installing the readline egg
      2. Fixing libchicken.dylib
    2. Homebrew
  4. BSD
    1. FreeBSD
    2. NetBSD
    3. OpenBSD
    4. DragonFly BSD
  5. Haiku
    1. HaikuPorts
  6. Other platforms/cross-platform support
    1. pkgsrc
    2. Microsoft Windows
    3. User survey

Platform packages

This aims to provide a comprehensive listing of all platforms where CHICKEN is available in pre-packaged form (whether as a distribution package or a binary).

To see on which platforms CHICKEN is supported, see portability.

In order to enable software written using CHICKEN to be effectively distributed, it is important that CHICKEN (or at least the CHICKEN libraries) be included in as many of the various packaging systems as possible, so that it can always be relied on as an available dependency.


Arch Linux

 pacman -S chicken

Debian Linux

For a complete CHICKEN install on Debian, you need to

# aptitude install chicken-bin libchicken-dev

Debian page for the CHICKEN source package.

Fedora Linux (and RHEL derivatives, via EPEL)

Fedora officially includes a fairly recent version of CHICKEN. To install, just use yum:

 sudo yum install chicken

There is also an unofficial RPM repository located at home:zilti:chicken with up-to-date Fedora packages.

Ubuntu Linux

Gentoo Linux

Gentoo users can install chicken the normal way:

 emerge -auv chicken

This will download, compile and install the latest version of CHICKEN (if it is not already installed).

CHICKEN's Portage ebuild is maintained by Marijn Schouten.


There are currently two unofficial builds of CHICKEN for OpenSuSE, which are built and kept updated using OpenSuSE's build service facility OBS. They can be obtained by adding the corresponding repository home:zilti:chicken to zypper's repository list and installing from there.

You need something along the lines of

# zypper addrepo 'http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/home:/zilti:/chicken/openSUSE_42.3/'
# zypper refresh
# zypper install chicken chicken-devel chicken-doc

for a complete installation of the CHICKEN scheme system. Please remember to replace the release number by the release you're actually using.


Embedded Linux


meta-chicken is a layer for Yocto/OpenEmbedded which can be used to cross-compile CHICKEN and eggs.


This package consists of the runtime library plus interpreter. The version of CHICKEN is 2.733.

ipkg install http://zedstar.org/ipk/chicken-scheme-interpreter_2.733_armv4t.ipk

Package maintained by john moore.

Maemo 5

Instructions for getting CHICKEN (4.4) and many eggs from a handy optified deb repository are at: http://0xab.com/n900

Package maintained by Andrei Barbu.

Mac OS X


If you're using MacPorts, installation is very simple. Open the Terminal application and type the following:

 sudo port install chicken

This will download, compile and install the latest CHICKEN version.

Installing the readline egg

You can install the readline egg to get history and tab-completion in csi. See Using the interpreter.

However, you may get errors when compiling the egg. This is because Apple doesn't ship GNU readline with OS X. However, there is an easy fix:

 port install readline

Fixing libchicken.dylib

When using certain extensions (posix is one example), you may come across the following error:

 "dlopen(libchicken.dylib, 9): image not found"

The easiest way to fix this is to add an alias to libchicken.dylib to /usr/local/lib, like so:

 sudo ln -s /opt/local/lib/libchicken.dylib /usr/local/lib/

Another solution is to set the DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variable to the location of libchicken.dylib. However, this will mess up some other programs, as they will look for their libraries in /opt/local/lib as well. One solution is to set up aliases for csi and csc in your bash profile. Add the following two lines to ~/.profile:

 alias csi='DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH=/opt/local/lib csi'
 alias csc='DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH=/opt/local/lib csc'

This will set DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH for csi and csc, but not for other commands.


If you're using Homebrew you can install the formula chicken:

   brew install chicken



For FreeBSD, you can use the lang/chicken port to install the latest stable release.


For NetBSD, you can use the lang/chicken package from pkgsrc to install the latest stable release.


For OpenBSD, you can use the lang/chicken package by running the following command as root:

$ pkg_add chicken

DragonFly BSD

For DragonFly BSD, you can use the lang/chicken package from pkgsrc to install the latest stable release.



CHICKEN has been added to the official ports repository and can be installed with the following command:

 haikuporter -i chicken

Other platforms/cross-platform support


For many systems, you can use pkgsrc. This is a cross-platform packaging system, which works on most modern Unix-like operating systems and even on Windows (using Interix/Services for Unix or Cygwin). See this table for the full list of supported platforms.

Microsoft Windows

NOTE: Some users may encounter issues installing eggs on Windows (particularly bind) unless an appropriate C compiler is installed. It is recommended to use mingw-w64 in place of mingw32 as the mingw32 project is no longer as actively maintained.

Chicken on the Chocolatey package manager, most recent pre-packaged version

Installer for Windows, includes the IUP and Canvas Draw eggs preinstalled

Another installer for Windows

If you use cygwin there are up to date packages included for 32 and 64bit versions.

MSYS2 is easy to setup and build Chicken for, and produces native 64 bit Windows binaries.

User survey

A survey trys to find out which platforms are commonly used by CHICKEN users. There might be an issue with csi.