Glazier is a set of batch files, scripts and toolchains designed to ease building CouchDB on Windows.

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Glazier is a set of batch files, scripts and toolchains designed to ease building CouchDB on Windows. It's as fully automated as possible, with most of the effort required only once.

Glazier uses the MS Visual Studio 2022 toolchain as much as possible, to ensure a quality Windows experience and to execute all binary dependencies within the same runtime.

We hope Glazier simplifies using Erlang and CouchDB for you, giving a consistent, repeatable build environment.

Base Requirements

Note that the scripts you'll run will modify your system extensively. We recommend a dedicated build machine or VM image for this work:

  • 64-bit Windows 7+. As of CouchDB 2.0 we only support a 64-bit build of CouchDB.
    • We like 64-bit Windows 10 Enterprise N (missing Media Player, etc.) from MSDN.
    • Apply Windows Updates and reboot until no more updates appear.
    • If using a VM, shutdown and snapshot your VM at this point.

Install Dependencies

Start an Administrative PowerShell console. Enter the following:

mkdir C:\relax\
cd C:\relax\
Set-ExecutionPolicy Bypass -Scope Process -Force; [System.Net.ServicePointManager]::SecurityProtocol = [System.Net.ServicePointManager]::SecurityProtocol -bor 3072; iex ((New-Object System.Net.WebClient).DownloadString(''))
choco feature enable -n allowGlobalConfirmation
choco install git
git config --global core.autocrlf false
git clone

You should go get lunch. The last step will take over an hour, even on a speedy Internet connection.

You're finally ready. You should have the following installed:

  • Visual Studio 2022 (Build Tools, Visual C++ workload, native desktop workload)
  • Windows 10 SDK (by native desktop workload; 10.0.19041.0)
  • NodeJS (LTS version)
  • WiX Toolset 3.11
  • Python 3
    • Python packages sphinx, sphinx_rtd_theme, pygments, nose2 and hypothesis
  • NSSM
  • GNU make
  • NuGet
  • VSSetup
  • VSWhere
  • GNU CoreUtils (cp, rm, rmdir, ...)
  • VCPkg (, which built and installed:
    • ICU (at time of writing, 69.1)
    • OpenSSL 3
  • SpiderMonkey 91

You should snapshot your VM at this point.

Building CouchDB itself

Open a new PowerShell window. Set up your shell correctly (this step works if you've closed your PowerShell window before any of the previous steps, too):


Then, start the process:

cd c:\relax
git clone
cd couchdb
git checkout <tag or branch of interest goes here>
&.\configure.ps1 -SpiderMonkeyVersion 91
make -f

You now have built CouchDB!

To run the tests:

make -f check

Finally, to build a CouchDB installer:

make -f release
cd c:\relax

The installer will be placed in your current working directory.

You made it! Time to relax. :D

If you're a release engineer, you may find the following commands useful too:

checksum -t sha256 apache-couchdb.#.#.#-RC#.tar.gz
checksum -t sha512 apache-couchdb.#.#.#-RC#.tar.gz
gpg --verify apache-couchdb.#.#.#-RC#.tar.gz.asc


Why Glazier?

@dch first got involved with CouchDB around 0.7. Only having a low-spec Windows PC to develop on, and no CouchDB Cloud provider being available, he tried to build CouchDB himself. It was hard going, and most of the frustration was trying to get the core Erlang environment set up and compiling without needing to buy Microsoft‘s expensive but excellent Visual Studio tools. Once Erlang was working he found many of the pre-requisite modules such as cURL, Zlib, OpenSSL, Mozilla’s SpiderMonkey JavaScript engine, and IBM's ICU were not available at a consistent compiler and VC runtime release.

There is a branch of glazier that has been used to build each CouchDB release.

Windows silent installs

Here are some sample commands, supporting the new features of the 3.0 installer.

Install CouchDB without a service, but with an admin user:password of admin:hunter2:

msiexec /i apache-couchdb-3.0.0.msi /quiet ADMINUSER=admin ADMINPASSWORD=hunter2 /norestart

The same as above, but also install and launch CouchDB as a service:

msiexec /i apache-couchdb-3.0.0.msi /quiet INSTALLSERVICE=1 ADMINUSER=admin ADMINPASSWORD=hunter2 /norestart

Unattended uninstall of CouchDB:

msiexec /x apache-couchdb-3.0.0.msi /quiet /norestart

Unattended uninstall if the installer file is unavailable:

msiexec /x {4CD776E0-FADF-4831-AF56-E80E39F34CFC} /quiet /norestart

Add /l* log.txt to any of the above to generate a useful logfile for debugging.