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Zebra is the Zcash Foundation's independent, consensus-compatible implementation of a Zcash node.

Zebra's network stack is interoperable with zcashd, and Zebra implements all the features required to reach Zcash network consensus, including the validation of all the consensus rules for the NU5 network upgrade. Here are some benefits of Zebra.

Zebra validates blocks and transactions, but needs extra software to generate them:

Please join us on Discord if you'd like to find out more or get involved!

Getting Started

You can run Zebra using our Docker image or you can build it manually. Please see the System Requirements section in the Zebra book for system requirements.


This command will run our latest release, and sync it to the tip:

docker run zfnd/zebra:latest

For more information, read our Docker documentation.

Building Zebra

Building Zebra requires Rust, libclang, pkg-config, and a C++ compiler.

Zebra is tested with the latest stable Rust version. Earlier versions are not supported or tested. Any Zebra release can start depending on new features in the latest stable Rust.

Every few weeks, we release a new Zebra version.

Below are quick summaries for installing the dependencies on your machine.

General instructions for installing dependencies

  1. Install cargo and rustc.

  2. Install Zebra's build dependencies:

    • libclang is a library that might have different names depending on your package manager. Typical names are libclang, libclang-dev, llvm, or llvm-dev.
    • clang or another C++ compiler: g++ (all platforms) or Xcode (macOS).
    • pkg-config

Dependencies on Arch

sudo pacman -S rust clang pkgconf

Note that the package clang includes libclang as well as the C++ compiler.

Once the dependencies are in place, you can build and install Zebra:

cargo install --locked zebrad

You can start Zebra by

zebrad start

See the Installing Zebra and Running Zebra sections in the book for more details.

Optional Features

You can also build Zebra with additional Cargo features:

You can combine multiple features by listing them as parameters of the --features flag:

cargo install --features="<feature1> <feature2> ..." ...

Our full list of experimental and developer features is in the API documentation.

Some debugging and monitoring features are disabled in release builds to increase performance.

Known Issues

There are a few bugs in Zebra that we're still working on fixing:

Future Work

We will continue to add new features as part of future network upgrades, and in response to community feedback.


The Zebra website contains user documentation, such as how to run or configure Zebra, set up metrics integrations, etc., as well as developer documentation, such as design documents. We also render API documentation for the external API of our crates, as well as internal documentation for private APIs.

User support

For bug reports please open a bug report ticket in the Zebra repository.

Alternatively by chat, Join the Zcash Foundation Discord Server and find the #zebra-support channel.


Zebra has a responsible disclosure policy, which we encourage security researchers to follow.


Zebra is distributed under the terms of both the MIT license and the Apache License (Version 2.0).


Some Zebra crates are distributed under the MIT license only, because some of their code was originally from MIT-licensed projects. See each crate's directory for details.