IntelliJ IDEA 2018.1 Help

Install and set up IntelliJ IDEA

Installation requirements

Hardware requirements

  • 2 GB RAM minimum, 4 GB RAM recommended
  • 1.5 GB hard disk space + at least 1 GB for caches
  • 1024x768 minimum screen resolution

Software requirements

JRE 1.8 is bundled with the IntelliJ IDEA distribution. You do not need to install Java on your computer to run IntelliJ IDEA.

A standalone JDK is required for Java development.

32-bit or 64-bit versions of Microsoft Windows 10, 8, 7 (SP1), or Vista (SP2) macOS 10.8.3 or later
(only 64-bit systems are supported)
  • OS Linux (note that a 32-bit JDK is not bundled, so a 64-bit system is recommended)
  • KDE, Gnome or Unity desktop environment recommended

Download and install IntelliJ IDEA

IntelliJ IDEA is available in two editions: Ultimate and Community. The Community edition is an open-source project and is free, but it has less features. The Ultimate edition is commercial, and provides an outstanding set of tools and features. For details, see the editions comparison matrix.

To install IntelliJ IDEA

  1. Download IntelliJ IDEA for your operating system.
  2. Do the following depending on your operating system:
    • Windows:
      1. Run the ideaIC.exe or the ideaIU.exe file you have downloaded.
      2. Follow the instructions in the installation wizard.
    • macOS:
      1. Double-click the ideaIC.dmg or ideaIU.dmg file you have downloaded to mount the macOS disk image.
      2. Copy IntelliJ IDEA to the Applications folder.
    • Linux:
      1. Unpack the ideaIC.gz or ideaIU.gz file you have downloaded to a different folder if your current Downloads folder doesn't support file execution:
        tar xfz ideaIC.tar.gz or ideaIU.tar.gz. <new_archive_folder>

        The recommended install location according to the filesystem hierarchy standard (FHS) is /opt. For example, it's possible to enter the following command:

        sudo tar xf -*.tar.gz -C /opt/
      2. Switch to the bin directory, for example:
        cd /opt/-*/bin
      3. Run from the bin subdirectory.

Run IntelliJ IDEA for the first time

Import IntelliJ IDEA settings

When you start IntelliJ IDEA for the first time, or after you have upgraded it from a previous version, the Complete Installation dialog opens where you can select whether you want to import the IDE settings:

ij complete installation dialog

If this is your first instance of IntelliJ IDEA, choose the Do not import settings option.

Select the user interface theme

Next, you will be prompted to select the UI theme. You can choose between the Default and the Darcula themes:

ij set UI theme

Disable the unnecessary plugins

IntelliJ IDEA is shipped with a variety of plugins that provide integration with different version control systems and application servers, add support for various frameworks and development technologies, etc.

On the next step you can disable the plugins you do not need to increase IntelliJ IDEA performance. If necessary, you can re-enable them later in the Settings dialog ( Ctrl+Alt+S under Plugins).

ij set plugins

You can click the Disable All link for each group of plugins to disable them all, or Customize to disable individual plugins.

Download and install additional plugins

On the next step, you are prompted to download additional plugins that are not bundled with the IDE from the IntelliJ IDEA plugins repository:

ij set featured plugins

Start a project in IntelliJ IDEA

After you have completed initial IntelliJ IDEA configuration, the Welcome screen will be displayed. It allows you to:

ij welcomeScreen

You can watch a quick video tutorial on how to run IntelliJ IDEA for the first time.

If you want to learn quickly about IntelliJ IDEA's main features and how to use them, refer to the Discover IntelliJ IDEA section.

Register IntelliJ IDEA

To try and evaluate IntelliJ IDEA, you can download and install its trial version for free. The trial version is available for 30 days, whereupon you need to obtain and register a license.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • On the Welcome screen, click Configure | Manage License
    • Select Help | Register from the main menu
    ij register
  2. Select how you want to register IntelliJ IDEA:
    • JetBrains Account: select this option if you have a JetBrains Account that allows you to access your purchases and manage licenses (see What is JetBrains Account? to learn more).
    • Activation code: select this option if you have an activation code for IntelliJ IDEA, and paste it to the text area.
    • License server: select this option to register IntelliJ IDEA through the License Server web application that allows you to manage floating licenses and issue licenses to users who do not have direct internet access.

      To override the URL of the system proxy during initial IntelliJ IDEA startup, use the -Djba.http.proxy property, which can be added as a JVM option.

      When performing silent install or managing IntelliJ IDEA installations on multiple machines, you can set the JETBRAINS_LICENSE_SERVER environment variable to point the installation to the license server URL.

Update IntelliJ IDEA

Out of the box, standalone IntelliJ IDEA installation is configured to check for updates automatically. It will notify you when a new version is available :

Platform and Plugin Updates

IntelliJ IDEA updates are usually patch-based: they are applied to the existing installation and only require you to restart the IDE. Note that these patches can only be applied sequentially, on top of one another. If an update is ignored or skipped, subsequent updates cannot be applied. Updating IntelliJ IDEA in this case will require either downloading and reinstalling it or using the Ignored updates list to apply updates one by one.

If the patch download takes a long time, you can send it to the background and continue working. Once download is complete, you will be prompted to restart, which should finalize the update.

If you do not want to install the proposed update for some reason, you can ignore it by clicking the Ignore This Update button in the update dialog box. The ignored build's number will be added to the Ignored updates list, and you will not be prompted to install this particular build until you remove it from the list.

Manage IntelliJ IDEA through Toolbox App

Toolbox App is a control panel that allows you to manage all JetBrains developer tools, including IntelliJ IDEA, as well as your projects, from a single point of access. It lets you maintain different versions of the same tool, install updates and roll them back if needed. It also remembers your JetBrains Account and uses it to automatically log you in when you install and register new tools.

  1. Download Toolbox App.
  2. Launch the setup file.
  3. When the installation is complete, accept the JetBrains privacy policy and sign in to your JetBrains Account.

Now you can manage existing tools, install new tools and download updates:

toolbox app

Perform silent installation on Windows

Silent installation is performed without any user interface. It can be used by network administrators to install IntelliJ IDEA on a number of machines and avoid interrupting other users.

To perform silent install, run the installer with the following switches:

  • /S: Enable silent install

  • /D: Specify the path to the installation directory

  • /CONFIG: Specify the path to the silent configuration file

For example:

ideaIU.exe /S /CONFIG=d:\temp\silent.config /D=d:\IDE\IntelliJ IDEA Ultimate

Silent configuration file

You can download the silent configuration file for IntelliJ IDEA at

The silent configuration file defines options for installing IntelliJ IDEA. With default options, silent installation is performed only for the current user (mode=user). If you want to install IntelliJ IDEA for all users, open the silent configuration file with a text editor, change the value of the installation mode option (mode=admin) and run the installer as an administrator.

Install IntelliJ IDEA as a snap package on Linux

You can install IntelliJ IDEA on Linux as a self-contained snap package. Since snaps update automatically, your IntelliJ IDEA installation will always be up-to-date.

IntelliJ IDEA is distributed via two channels:

  • The stable channel includes only stable versions. To install the latest stable release of IntelliJ IDEA, run the following command:

    $ sudo snap install intellij-idea-ultimate --classic
    $ sudo snap install intellij-idea-community --classic

  • The edge channel includes EAP builds. To install the latest EAP build of IntelliJ IDEA, run the following command:

    $ sudo snap install intellij-idea-ultimate --classic --edge
    $ sudo snap install intellij-idea-community --classic --edge

When the snap is installed, you can launch it by running the intellij-idea-community or intellij-idea-ultimate command.

To list all installed snaps, run sudo snap list. For more information, see the Snapcraft documentation.

Last modified: 24 July 2018

See Also