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  1. 06e65a2 Add pkgconfig file for libupb by Mike Kruskal · 29 hours ago main
  2. 57828b0 More refactoring in preparation for RepeatedField SOO. by Protobuf Team Bot · 31 hours ago
  3. 1aefa57 Upgrade input parameters in UnknownFieldSet from `const std::string&` to by Protobuf Team Bot · 31 hours ago
  4. 1b6869e Move Rep out of RepeatedField and rename to HeapRep. by Protobuf Team Bot · 32 hours ago
  5. da7b416 Downgrade CMake to 3.29 to workaround Abseil issue. by Mike Kruskal · 33 hours ago

Protocol Buffers - Google's data interchange format

OpenSSF Scorecard

Copyright 2023 Google LLC


Protocol Buffers (a.k.a., protobuf) are Google's language-neutral, platform-neutral, extensible mechanism for serializing structured data. You can learn more about it in protobuf's documentation.

This README file contains protobuf installation instructions. To install protobuf, you need to install the protocol compiler (used to compile .proto files) and the protobuf runtime for your chosen programming language.

Working With Protobuf Source Code

Most users will find working from supported releases to be the easiest path.

If you choose to work from the head revision of the main branch your build will occasionally be broken by source-incompatible changes and insufficiently-tested (and therefore broken) behavior.

If you are using C++ or otherwise need to build protobuf from source as a part of your project, you should pin to a release commit on a release branch.

This is because even release branches can experience some instability in between release commits.

Protobuf Compiler Installation

The protobuf compiler is written in C++. If you are using C++, please follow the C++ Installation Instructions to install protoc along with the C++ runtime.

For non-C++ users, the simplest way to install the protocol compiler is to download a pre-built binary from our GitHub release page.

In the downloads section of each release, you can find pre-built binaries in zip packages: protoc-$VERSION-$ It contains the protoc binary as well as a set of standard .proto files distributed along with protobuf.

If you are looking for an old version that is not available in the release page, check out the Maven repository.

These pre-built binaries are only provided for released versions. If you want to use the github main version at HEAD, or you need to modify protobuf code, or you are using C++, it's recommended to build your own protoc binary from source.

If you would like to build protoc binary from source, see the C++ Installation Instructions.

Protobuf Runtime Installation

Protobuf supports several different programming languages. For each programming language, you can find instructions in the corresponding source directory about how to install protobuf runtime for that specific language:

C++ (include C++ runtime and protoc)src

Quick Start

The best way to learn how to use protobuf is to follow the tutorials in our developer guide.

If you want to learn from code examples, take a look at the examples in the examples directory.


The complete documentation is available at the Protocol Buffers doc site.

Support Policy

Read about our version support policy to stay current on support timeframes for the language libraries.

Developer Community

To be alerted to upcoming changes in Protocol Buffers and connect with protobuf developers and users, join the Google Group.