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How To Install Erlang on Debian 11

Install Erlang on Debian 11

In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Erlang on Debian 11. For those of you who didn’t know, Erlang is a functional, concurrent programming language designed specifically for systems with high availability requirements. Erlang was originally developed to be used in several large telecommunication systems. But it has now slowly made its foray into diverse sectors like eCommerce, computer telephony, and banking sectors as well.

This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of the Erlang programming language on a Debian 11 (Bullseye).


  • A server running one of the following operating systems: Debian 10 or Debian 11.
  • It’s recommended that you use a fresh OS install to prevent any potential issues.
  • SSH access to the server (or just open Terminal if you’re on a desktop).
  • A non-root sudo user or access to the root user. We recommend acting as a non-root sudo user, however, as you can harm your system if you’re not careful when acting as the root.

Install Erlang on Debian 11 Bullseye

Step 1. Before we install any software, it’s important to make sure your system is up to date by running the following apt commands in the terminal:

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade
sudo apt install dirmngr ca-certificates software-properties-common gnupg gnupg2 apt-transport-https curl

Step 2. Installing Erlang on Debian 11.

By default, Erlang is available on Debian 11 base repository. So, now run the following command below to add the Erlang repository to your Debian system:

echo "deb [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/erlang.gpg] bullseye contrib" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/erlang.list

Next, import the GPG key:

curl -fsSL | sudo gpg --dearmor -o /usr/share/keyrings/erlang.gpg

Once you add the repository to your Debian system, now install Erlang using the following commands:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install erlang

Step 3. Accessing Erlang Shell.

Once successfully installed, to launch the shell environment, use the following command below:


Now we test by writing a simple Hello World Erlang code:

nano helloworld.erl

Add the following file:

% Test to display Hello World Erlang Code
helloworld() ->
fwrite("Hai Guys.. , Erlang World!\n").

Save and close the file, then execute using the following command:$ erl
Erlang/OTP 23 [erts-11.1] [source] [64-bit] [smp:6:6] [ds:4:4:16] [async-threads:2]
Eshell V11.1 (abort with ^G)
1> c(hellotest).
2> hellotest01,helloworld().
** exception error: undefined shell command helloworld/0
3> hellotest01:helloworld().
Hai Guys.. , Erlang World!

Congratulations! You have successfully installed erlang. Thanks for using this tutorial for installing the latest version of the Erlang programming language on Debian 11 Bullseye. For additional help or useful information, we recommend you check the official Erlang website.

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r00t is a seasoned Linux system administrator with a wealth of experience in the field. Known for his contributions to, r00t has authored numerous tutorials and guides, helping users navigate the complexities of Linux systems. His expertise spans across various Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, CentOS, and Debian. r00t's work is characterized by his ability to simplify complex concepts, making Linux more accessible to users of all skill levels. His dedication to the Linux community and his commitment to sharing knowledge makes him a respected figure in the field.
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