Learn how to install Terminus to your local computer.

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Terminus is available for macOS and Linux.

Windows 10 users can install the Windows Subsystem for Linux, then install Terminus in the Linux shell.

Because some Terminus commands use SSH authentication, consider generating and adding SSH keys to your account before you continue.


Install Terminus

There are several ways to install Terminus, depending on your use case:

  • For a self-contained Terminus executable, install terminus.phar.
  • For a Composer-managed version of Terminus that is not part of your other Composer-managed project(s) and doesn't utilize global Composer installations, use the Terminus installer PHAR.
  • If you want to contribute to the Terminus project, download and install from the git repository.

Standalone Terminus PHAR

The following commands will:

  • create a terminus folder in your home directory (~/),

  • get the latest release tag of Terminus,

  • download and save the release as ~/terminus/terminus,

  • make the file executable,

  • add a symlink to your local bin directory for the Terminus executable.

    mkdir ~/terminus && cd ~/terminus
    curl -L`curl --silent "" | perl -nle'print $& while m#"tag_name": "\K[^"]*#g'`/terminus.phar --output terminus
    chmod +x terminus
    sudo ln -s ~/terminus/terminus /usr/local/bin/terminus


There is an unofficial third-party installer script which will download terminus.phar and attempt to update the appropriate rc files, available on GitHub. Note that this script is not supported directly by Pantheon.

Terminus Installer PHAR

The Terminus installer.phar can be used to install a Composer-managed version of Terminus that is not part of your other Composer-managed project(s) and doesn't utilize global Composer installations. Use the following command to install the most recent release of Terminus. In the example below, we're creating a terminus directory in $HOME to install in.

mkdir ~/terminus && cd ~/terminus
curl -O && php installer.phar install

See Troubleshooting if your installation fails, or the Installation section of the Terminus README file on GitHub for advanced installation methods.


Machine Token

Once Terminus is installed, login with a machine token, which is used to securely authenticate your machine. Machine tokens provide the same access as your username and password, and do not expire. For more information, see Machine Tokens.

First, create a Machine Token from User Dashboard > Account > Machine Tokens.

Once the token has been created, use it to authenticate Terminus by running the following command:

terminus auth:login --machine-token=‹machine-token›
terminus auth:login

SSH Authentication

Commands that execute remote instructions to tools like Drush or WP-CLI require SSH authentication. See Generate and Add SSH Keys to prevent password requests when executing these commands.


Terminus PHAR Installer: Parse error near ')'

If you use ZSH and get a parse error near ')', ZSH is inserting escape characters (\) into the command on paste. You can disable magic functions to eliminate this behavior. For instance, if you get the following error when executing the Terminus cURL command: zsh: parse error near ')', remove the \ after the $ and run the command again.

Permission Denied

If the installer throws an IOException at the end:

Failed to create symbolic link from "/path/to/current/dir/vendor/bin/terminus" to "/usr/local/bin/terminus".

You may need to remove an old installation from terminus from /usr/local/bin/terminus.

If you run into permission problems such as:

file installer.phar: Permission denied
  0 3150k    0  1928    0     0   1474      0  0:36:28  0:00:01  0:36:27  7330
curl: (23) Failed writing body (0 != 1928)

You should relocate your installation to a directory where you have permission to write files. If in doubt, you can create a terminus directory in your $HOME and go there:

cd $HOME/terminus
curl -O && php installer.phar install

PHP Fatal error: Uncaught exception 'ReflectionException'

The php-xml extension is typically included and enabled by default when installing PHP. However, the following error indicates that the php-xml extension is missing:

PHP Fatal error: Uncaught exception 'ReflectionException' with message 'Class DOMDocument does not exist' in /root/vendor/consolidation/output-formatters/src/Transformations/DomToArraySimplifier.php:24

To resolve this error, install the php-xml extension.

curl: (60) SSL certificate problem

The following error occurs when curl is unable to verify the local issuer certificate:

curl: (60) SSL certificate problem: unable to get local issuer certificate

To resolve, save a copy of the latest CA certificate to a new file named cacert.pem then add curl.cainfo = "[path_to_file]\cacert.pem" to your php.ini file. If you're running XAMPP, you can add the cacert.pem file within the xampp\php\extras\ssl directory.

Enable the terminus Command

If you encounter the following error after installation completes:

Terminus was installed, but the installer was not able to write to your bin dir. To enable the
`terminus` command, add this alias to your .bash_profile (Mac) or .bashrc (Linux) file:

Use this command to create a terminus alias that calls the application:

echo "alias terminus=~/vendor/bin/terminus" >> ~/.bashrc

Windows 10 Installation Issues

Prerequisites are not installed

The default Linux environment installed by the WSL may not have all of the requirements for Terminus installed. Using your distribution's package manager, install:

  • PHP (including php-cli, php-curl, and php-xml)
  • Curl (to download the installer)

On a subsystem with Ubuntu 18.04, since Curl is already installed, the commands to run all updates and install the PHP package look like this:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y
sudo apt install php7.2-cli