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Short Description
Zulip development environment
Full Description

Zulip overview |
Community |
Installing for dev |
Installing for production |
Ways to contribute |
How to get involved |

Zulip overview

Zulip is a powerful, open source group chat application. Written in
Python and using the Django framework, Zulip supports both private
messaging and group chats via conversation streams.

Zulip also supports fast search, drag-and-drop file uploads, image
previews, group private messages, audible notifications,
missed-message emails, desktop apps, and much more.

Further information on the Zulip project and its features can be found


There are several places online where folks discuss Zulip.

  • The primary place is the
    Zulip development community Zulip server.

  • For Google Summer of Code students and applicants, we have
    a mailing list
    for help, questions, and announcements. But it's often simpler to
    visit instead.

  • We have
    a public mailing list
    that is currently pretty low traffic because most discussions happen
    in our public Zulip instance. We use it to announce Zulip developer
    community gatherings and ask for feedback on major technical or design
    decisions. It has several hundred subscribers, so you can use it to
    ask questions about features or possible bugs, but please don't use it
    ask for generic help getting started as a contributor (e.g. because
    you want to do Google Summer of Code). The rest of this page covers
    how to get involved in the Zulip project in detail.

  • Zulip also has a blog and
    twitter account.

  • Last but not least, we use GitHub
    to track Zulip-related issues (and store our code, of course).
    Anybody with a GitHub account should be able to create Issues there
    pertaining to bugs or enhancement requests. We also use Pull Requests
    as our primary mechanism to receive code contributions.

The Zulip community has a Code of Conduct.

Installing the Zulip Development environment

The Zulip development environment is the recommended option for folks
interested in trying out Zulip. This is documented in the developer
installation guide

Running Zulip in production

Zulip in production supports Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty and Ubuntu 16.04
Xenial. Work is ongoing on adding support for additional
platforms. The installation process is documented at and in more detail in the

Ways to contribute

Zulip welcomes all forms of contributions! This page documents the
Zulip development process.

Google Summer of Code

We participated in
GSoC last year and
hope to do so again in 2017. For guidance, please read
our GSoC instructions and ideas page
and feel free to email
our GSoC mailing list.

How to get involved with contributing to Zulip

First, subscribe to the Zulip development discussion mailing

The Zulip project uses a system of labels in our issue
to make it easy to find a project if you don't
have your own project idea in mind or want to get some experience with
working on Zulip before embarking on a larger project you have in

  • Integrations.
    Integrate Zulip with another piece of software and contribute it
    back to the community! Writing an integration can be a great first
    contribution. There's detailed documentation on how to write
    integrations in the Zulip integration writing

  • Bite Size:
    Smaller projects that might be a great first contribution.

  • Documentation:
    The Zulip project loves contributions of new documentation.

  • Help Wanted:
    A broader list of projects that nobody is currently working on.

  • Platform support:
    These are open issues about making it possible to install Zulip on a
    wider range of platforms.

  • Bugs: Open bugs.

  • Feature requests:
    Browsing this list can be a great way to find feature ideas to
    implement that other Zulip users are excited about.

  • 2016 roadmap milestone:
    The projects that are
    priorities for the Zulip project.
    These are great projects if you're looking to make an impact.

Another way to find issues in Zulip is to take advantage of our
"area:<foo>" convention in separating out issues. We partition all of
our issues into areas like admin, compose, emoji, hotkeys, i18n,
onboarding, search, etc. You can see this here:


Click on any of the "area:" labels and you will see all the tickets
related to your area of interest.

If you're excited about helping with an open issue, make sure to claim
the issue by commenting the following in the comment section:
"@zulipbot claim". @zulipbot will assign you to the issue and
label the issue as in progress. For more details, check out

You're encouraged to ask questions on how to best implement or debug
your changes -- the Zulip maintainers are excited to answer questions
to help you stay unblocked and working efficiently.

We also welcome suggestions of features that you feel would be
valuable or changes that you feel would make Zulip a better open
source project, and are happy to support you in adding new features or
other user experience improvements to Zulip.

If you have a new feature you'd like to add, we recommend you start by
opening a GitHub issue about the feature idea explaining the problem
that you're hoping to solve and that you're excited to work on it. A
Zulip maintainer will usually reply within a day with feedback on the
idea, notes on any important issues or concerns, and and often tips on
how to implement or test it. Please feel free to ping the thread if
you don't hear a response from the maintainers -- we try to be very
responsive so this usually means we missed your message.

For significant changes to the visual design, user experience, data
model, or architecture, we highly recommend posting a mockup,
screenshot, or description of what you have in mind to zulip-devel@ to
get broad feedback before you spend too much time on implementation

Finally, before implementing a larger feature, we highly recommend
looking at the new feature tutorial and coding style guidelines on

Feedback on how to make this development process more efficient, fun,
and friendly to new contributors is very welcome! Just send an email
to the Zulip Developers list with your thoughts.

When you feel like you have completed your work on an issue, post your
PR to the
#peer review
stream on
This is our lightweight process that gives other developers the
opportunity to give you comments and suggestions on your work.


Copyright 2011-2016 Dropbox, Inc. and contributors

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License");
you may not use this file except in compliance with the License.
You may obtain a copy of the License at

Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software
distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS,
See the License for the specific language governing permissions and
limitations under the License.

The software includes some works released by third parties under other
free and open source licenses. Those works are redistributed under the
license terms under which the works were received. For more details,
see the docs/THIRDPARTY file included with this distribution.

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