Development Quickstart

SearXNG loves developers; Developers do not need to worry about tool chains, the usual developer tasks can be comfortably executed via make.

Don’t hesitate, just clone SearXNG’s sources and start hacking right now ..

git clone searxng

Here is how a minimal workflow looks like:

  1. start hacking

  2. run your code: make run

  3. format & test your code: make format.python and make test

If you think at some point something fails, go back to start. Otherwise, choose a meaningful commit message and we are happy to receive your pull request. To not end in wild west we have some directives, please pay attention to our “How to contribute” guideline.

If you implement themes, you will need to setup a Node.js environment: make node.env

Before you call make run (2.), you need to compile the modified styles and JavaScript: make themes.all

Alternatively you can also compile selective the theme you have modified, e.g. the simple theme.

make themes.simple


To get live builds while modifying CSS & JS use: LIVE_THEME=simple make run

If you finished your tests you can start to commit your changes. To separate the modified source code from the build products first run:


This will restore the old build products and only your changes of the code remain in the working tree which can now be added & committed. When all sources are committed, you can commit the build products simply by:


Committing the build products should be the last step, just before you send us your PR. There is also a make target to rewind this last build commit: