mdbook 0.0.16

create books from markdown files (like Gitbook)


mdBook is a utility to create modern online books from Markdown files.

This project is still evolving.
See #90

What does it look like?

The Documentation for mdBook has been written in Markdown and is using mdBook to generate the online book-like website you can read. The documentation uses the latest version on GitHub and showcases the available features.


There are multiple ways to install mdBook.

  1. Binaries
    Binaries are available for download here. Make sure to put the path to the binary into your PATH.

  2. From
    This requires Rust and Cargo to be installed. Once you have installed Rust, type the following in the terminal:

    cargo install mdbook

    This will download and compile mdBook for you, the only thing left to do is to add the Cargo bin directory to your PATH.

  3. From Git
    The version published to will ever so slightly be behind the version hosted here on GitHub. If you need the latest version you can build the git version of mdBook yourself. Cargo makes this super easy!

    cargo install --git

    Again, make sure to add the Cargo bin directory to your PATH.

  4. For Contributions
    If you want to contribute to mdBook you will have to clone the repository on your local machine:

    git clone

    cd into mdBook/ and run

    cargo build

    The resulting binary can be found in mdBook/target/debug/ under the name mdBook or mdBook.exe.


mdBook will primaraly be used as a command line tool, even though it exposes all its functionality as a Rust crate for integration in other projects.

Here are the main commands you will want to run. For a more exhaustive explanation, check out the documentation.

  • mdbook init

    The init command will create a directory with the minimal boilerplate to start with.

    ├── book
    └── src

    book and src are both directories. src contains the markdown files that will be used to render the ouput to the book directory.

    Please, take a look at the Documentation for more information and some neat tricks.

  • mdbook build

    This is the command you will run to render your book, it reads the file to understand the structure of your book, takes the markdown files in the source directory as input and outputs static html pages that you can upload to a server.

  • mdbook watch

    When you run this command, mdbook will watch your markdown files to rebuild the book on every change. This avoids having to come back to the terminal to type mdbook build over and over again.

  • mdbook serve

    Does the same thing as mdbook watch but additionally serves the book at http://localhost:3000 (port is changeable) and reloads the browser when a change occures.

As a library

Aside from the command line interface, this crate can also be used as a library. This means that you could integrate it in an existing project, like a web-app for example. Since the command line interface is just a wrapper around the library functionality, when you use this crate as a library you have full access to all the functionality of the command line interface with an easy to use API and more!

See the Documentation and the API docs for more information.


Contributions are highly appreciated and encouraged! Don't hesitate to participate to discussions in the issues, propose new features and ask for help.

If you are not very confident with Rust, I will be glad to mentor as best as I can if you decide to tackle an issue or new feature.

People who are not familiar with the code can look at issues that are tagged easy. A lot of issues are also related to web development, so people that are not comfortable with Rust can also participate! :wink:

You can pick any issue you want to work on. Usually it's a good idea to ask if someone is already working on it and if not to claim the issue.


All the code is released under the Mozilla Public License v2.0, for more information take a look at the LICENSE file.