Installing Hugo on Windows

This tutorial aims to be a complete guide to installing Hugo on your Windows computer.


  1. We’ll call your website for the purpose of this tutorial.
  2. You will use C:\Hugo\Sites as the starting point for your site.
  3. You will use C:\Hugo\bin to store executable files.

Setup Your Directories

You’ll need a place to store the Hugo executable, your content (the files that you build), and the generated files (the HTML that Hugo builds for you).

  1. Open Windows Explorer.
  2. Create a new folder: C:\Hugo (assuming you want Hugo on your C drive – it can go anywhere.)
  3. Create a subfolder in the Hugo folder: C:\Hugo\bin.
  4. Create another subfolder in Hugo: C:\Hugo\Sites.

Technical users

  1. Download the latest zipped Hugo executable from the Hugo Releases page.
  2. Extract all contents to your ..\Hugo\bin folder.
  3. The hugo executable will be named as hugo_hugo-version_platform_arch.exe. Rename that executable to hugo.exe for ease of use.
  4. In PowerShell or your preferred CLI, add the hugo.exe executable to your PATH by navigating to C:\Hugo\bin (or the location of your hugo.exe file) and use the command set PATH=%PATH%;C:\Hugo\bin. If the hugo command does not work after a reboot, you may have to run the command prompt as administrator.

Less technical users

  1. Go the Hugo Releases page.
  2. The latest release is announced on top. Scroll to the bottom of the release announcement to see the downloads. They’re all ZIP files.
  3. Find the Windows files near the bottom (they’re in alphabetical order, so Windows is last) – download either the 32-bit or 64-bit file depending on whether you have 32-bit or 64-bit Windows. (If you don’t know, see here.)
  4. Move the ZIP file into your C:\Hugo\bin folder.
  5. Double-click on the ZIP file and extract its contents. Be sure to extract the contents into the same C:\Hugo\bin folder – Windows will do this by default unless you tell it to extract somewhere else.
  6. You should now have three new files: hugo executable (example: hugo_0.18_windows_amd64.exe),, and (you can delete the ZIP download now.). Rename that hugo executable (hugo_hugo-version_platform_arch.exe) to hugo.exe for ease of use.
  7. Now add Hugo to your Windows PATH settings:

    For Windows 10 users:

    • Right click on the Start button.
    • Click on System.
    • Click on Advanced System Settings on the left.
    • Click on the Environment Variables… button on the bottom.
    • In the User variables section, find the row that starts with PATH (PATH will be all caps).
    • Double-click on PATH.
    • Click the New… button.
    • Type in the folder where hugo.exe was extracted, which is C:\Hugo\bin if you went by the instructions above. The PATH entry should be the folder where Hugo lives, not the binary. Press Enter when you’re done typing.
    • Click OK at every window to exit.

    Note that the path editor in Windows 10 was added in the large November 2015 Update. You’ll need to have that or a later update installed for the above steps to work. You can see what Windows 10 build you have by clicking on the  Start button → Settings → System → About. See here for more.)

    For Windows 7 and 8.x users:

    Windows 7 and 8.1 do not include the easy path editor included in Windows 10, so non-technical users on those platforms are advised to install a free third-party path editor like Windows Environment Variables Editor or Path Editor.

Verify the executable

Run a few commands to verify that the executable is ready to run, and then build a sample site to get started.

  1. Open a command prompt window.

  2. At the prompt, type hugo help and press the Enter key. You should see output that starts with:

    hugo is the main command, used to build your Hugo site.
    Hugo is a Fast and Flexible Static Site Generator
    built with love by spf13 and friends in Go.
    Complete documentation is available at

    If you do, then the installation is complete. If you don’t, double-check the path that you placed the hugo.exe file in and that you typed that path correctly when you added it to your PATH variable. If you’re still not getting the output, post a note on the Hugo discussion list (in the Support topic) with your command and the output.

  3. At the prompt, change your directory to the Sites directory.

    C:\Program Files> cd C:\Hugo\Sites
  4. Run the command to generate a new site. I’m using as the name of the site.

    C:\Hugo\Sites> hugo new site
  5. You should now have a directory at C:\Hugo\Sites\ Change into that directory and list the contents. You should get output similar to the following:

     Directory of C:\hugo\sites\
    04/13/2015  10:44 PM    <DIR>          .
    04/13/2015  10:44 PM    <DIR>          ..
    04/13/2015  10:44 PM    <DIR>          archetypes
    04/13/2015  10:44 PM                83 config.toml
    04/13/2015  10:44 PM    <DIR>          content
    04/13/2015  10:44 PM    <DIR>          data
    04/13/2015  10:44 PM    <DIR>          layouts
    04/13/2015  10:44 PM    <DIR>          static
                   1 File(s)             83 bytes
                   7 Dir(s)   6,273,331,200 bytes free

You now have Hugo installed and a site to work with. You need to add a layout (or theme), then create some content. Go to for steps on doing that.


@dhersam has created a nice video on common issues: