EMBOSS Downloads


Stable release

The EMBOSS package is available from our new FTP server ftp://emboss.open-bio.org/pub/EMBOSS/ in the file EMBOSS-6.5.7.tar.gz

This distribution is built from our CVS master copy and put on the FTP site if all compilation and other quality assurance tests succeed.

The major version numbers, 1.0.0, 2.0.0 etc will increase by 1 upon each major release, which by tradition has always been made on St Swithin's day (15th July)

What's New

The log file of changes gives a brief description of what has changed over the versions and in the latest release.

Developers (CVS) release

For developers who need to keep up with recent library changes, we recommend using the developers (CVS) release which is the current CVS source code tree the EMBOSS core developers use.

Getting started with EMBOSS

Required disk space

The required disk space depends on the particular platform you are installing on. EMBOSS configured to use shared libraries will require around 100Mb to 200Mb. If you configure it to produce static executables then it may well require three times that amount or more.

Of course, you will need additional space for any databases you choose to install.

System requirements

The EMBOSS package runs on UNIX and other systems. It is compiled every night on the following systems:

It is known to work on:

It is reported to work on:

It will probably work on many other machines and operating systems - if you wish to add a name, let us know.


To unpack the distribution (where 'x.x' refers to the current distribution number), you should use the following UNIX commands:

gunzip EMBOSS-6.x.x.tar.gz
tar xvf EMBOSS-6.x.x.tar


If you are compiling a fresh installation:


If you compile it on subsequent occasions, use the following:-

   rm config.cache
   make clean


When you have downloaded your copy of EMBOSS, you will need to configure EMBOSS. This involves, for example, editing a file to specify the location of your databases. To do this you should consult David Martin's excellent EMBOSS administration guide

Associated software: EMBASSY

EMBASSY packages include applications with the same look and feel as EMBOSS applications, but which the author wishes to be kept separate from EMBOSS. This is usually because the packages are for specialised sequence analysis or for non-sequence based anaylsis, or are licensed differently to EMBOSS (i.e. non GPL).

The EMBASSY packages currently include PHYLIP (now phylip 3.68), HMMER, EMNU, ESIM4, MEME, TOPO, MSE and various beta-release packages (DOMAINATRIX, DOMALIGN, DOMSEARCH, SIGNATURE, STRUCTURE) for protein structure and related areas. The VIENNA package for RNA folding was added in 4.0.0.

The EMBASSY packages can be downloaded from here.

Platform-dependent notes

RPM Package Manager files

The RPM Package Manager (RPM) is command-line driven package management system for installing, uninstalling, verifying, querying and updating software packages. Each software package consists of an archive of files along with package information such as version, description etc. Read more about RPM.

Ryan Golhar (Informatics Institute, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey) has built RPMs for EMBOSS 5.0.0 and related applications. They are available from http://informatics.umdnj.edu/BioRPMs or from the EMBOSS ftp site:

Please note that files under contrib/ were contributed to the EMBOSS project but are not part of the EMBOSS or EMBASSY distributions. Owing to the limited availability of test platforms, these contibutions might not have been tested fully or even at all by the core EMBOSS developers. In case of difficulty, please contact the original author, in this case, Ryan Golhar (golharam@umdnj.edu).

Packages in Debian format

Pre-compiled packages are available in Debian format for Debian and Ubuntu on the Intel x86 and AMD64 platforms (both operating systems), as well as Alpha, ARM, HP PA-RISC, Intel IA-64, MIPS, PowerPC, S/390 and SPARC on Debian.