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Soroban contracts are small programs written in the Rust programming language.

To build and develop contracts you need only a couple prerequisites:

Install Rust

If you use macOS, Linux, or another Unix-like OS, the simplest method to install a Rust toolchain is to install rustup. Install rustup with the following command.

curl --proto '=https' --tlsv1.2 -sSf | sh

If you use Windows, or need an alternative method of installing Rust, check out:

Install the target

Install the wasm32-unknown-unknown target.

rustup target add wasm32-unknown-unknown

Configure an Editor

Many editors have support for Rust. Visit the following link to find out how to configure your editor:

A popular editor is Visual Studio Code:

Install the Soroban CLI

The Soroban CLI can execute Soroban contracts in the same environment the contract will execute on network, however in a local sandbox.

Install the Soroban CLI using cargo install.

cargo install --locked --version 20.1.1 soroban-cli

Report issues and share feedback about the Soroban CLI here.


Run the soroban command and you should see output like below.

$ soroban
Build, deploy, & interact with contracts; set identities to sign with; configure networks; generate keys; and more.

CLI Reference:

Usage: soroban [OPTIONS] <COMMAND>

completion Print shell completion code for the specified shell
contract Tools for smart contract developers
config Read and update config
events Watch the network for contract events
lab Experiment with early features and expert tools
version Print version information

--global Use global config
-f, --filter-logs <FILTER_LOGS> Filter logs output. To turn on "soroban_cli::log::footprint=debug" or off "=off". Can also use env var `RUST_LOG`
-q, --quiet Do not write logs to stderr including `INFO`
-v, --verbose Log DEBUG events
--very-verbose Log DEBUG and TRACE events [aliases: vv]
--list List installed plugins. E.g. `soroban-hello`
-h, --help Print help (see more with '--help')
-V, --version Print version

--config-dir <CONFIG_DIR>

Protip: You can use soroban completion to generate shell completion for bash, elvish, fish, powershell, and zsh. You should absolutely try it out. It will feel like a super power!!

To enable autocomplete in the current bash shell, run:

source <(soroban completion --shell bash)

To enable autocomplete permanently in future bash shells, run:

echo "source <(soroban completion --shell bash)" >> ~/.bashrc

Users of non-bash shells may need to adapt the above commands to suit their needs.

Configuring the CLI for Testnet

Soroban has a test network called Testnet that you can use to deploy and test your smart contracts. It's a live network, but it's not the same as the Stellar public network. It's a separate network that is used for development and testing, so you can't use it for production apps. But it's a great place to test your contracts before you deploy them to the public network.

To configure your CLI to interact with Testnet, run the following command:

soroban config network add --global testnet \
--rpc-url \
--network-passphrase "Test SDF Network ; September 2015"

Note the --global. This creates a file in your home folder's /.config/soroban/network/testnet.toml with the settings you specified. This means that you can use the --network testnet flag in any Soroban CLI command to use this network.

If you want project-specific network configurations, you can omit the --global flag, and the networks will be added to your working directory's .soroban/network folder instead.

Configure an Identity

When you deploy a smart contract to a network, you need to specify an identity that will be used to sign the transactions.

Let's configure an identity called alice. You can use any name you want, but it might be nice to have some named identities that you can use for testing, such as alice, bob, and carol.

soroban keys generate --global alice

You can see the public key of alice with:

soroban keys address alice

Like the Network configs, the --global means that the identity gets stored in ~/.config/soroban/identity/alice.toml. You can omit the --global flag to store the identity in your project's .soroban/identity folder instead.

All this did so far is generate a public/private keypair on your local machine. No network requests were made, and alice has no funds on Testnet. This means that you can't make any transactions with alice yet.

To get alice some Testnet tokens, you'll need to use Friendbot. All Stellar and Soroban test networks have a Friendbot that you can use to get some test tokens. The public Friendbot instance for Testnet lives at Use it:

curl "$(soroban keys address alice)"
Command Expansion $(…)

This uses command expansion, which only works with bash-compatible shells. If you are using Windows or some other shell, you will need to copy the output of soroban config… and paste it into the curl command, or figure out how command expansion works in your shell.