Miscellaneous Reference

This page provides a series of miscellaneous reference articles that can be helpful when installing Plasma Group components.

Running a Terminal

Before you keep going, it’s probably good to become familiar with using the terminal on your computer. Here are some resources for getting started:

Installing Git

git is an open source version control system. You don’t really need to know how it works, but you will need it in order to install most Plasma Group components.


Atlassian has a good tutorial on installing git on Windows. It’s basically just installing an .exe and running a setup wizard.


Installing git on a Mac is pretty easy. You basically just need to type git into your terminal. If you have git installed, you’ll see a bunch of output. Otherwise, you’ll get a pop-up asking you to install some command-line tools (including git).


Installing git on Linux is also pretty easy. However, the exact install process depends on your distribution. Here’s a guide for installing git on some popular distributions.

Installing Node.js

Most of the Plasma Group apps are built in JavaScript and make use of a tool called Node.js. In order to run our tools, you’ll need to make sure that you’ve got Node.js installed.

Here’s a list of ways to install Node.js on different operating systems:


If you’re on a windows computer, you can download the latest Long-term Support (LTS) version of Node.js here. You’ll just need to install the .msi file that Node.js provides and restart your computer.


You have some options if you want to install Node.js on a Mac. The simplest way is to download the .pkg file from the Node.js downloads page. Once you’ve installed the .pkg file, run this command on your terminal to make sure everything is working properly:

node -v

If everything is working, you should see a version number pop up that looks something like this:



Note: If you’ve already installed Node.js with the above steps, you can skip this section!

You can also install Node.js using Homebrew. First, make sure Homebrew is up to date:

brew update

Now just install Node.js:

brew install node


There are different ways to install Node.js depending on your Linux distribution. Here’s an article that goes through installing Node.js on different distributions.