Skip to main content


This topic includes a description of common development workflows for the Wing project.

Environment Setupโ€‹

Here is a list of minimal tools you should install to build the Wing repo in your development environment:

  • Node.js v18 and npm v8
    • We recommend volta to manage node tools
  • Rust
    • Only needed for integration tests - make sure to do the setup part to create credentials
  • Terraform CLI
    • Only needed for integration tests
  • Docker or emscripten
    • Only needed for to build the grammar as WASM for the web-based playground


git clone
cd wing
npm install
Nx Commands

Nx commands in this document are structured as

npx nx <target> <project>
# or
npx nx <target> <project> -- <args>

  • npx can be omitted if Nx is installed globally
  • <project> may be omitted if the current working directory is within the given project directory. If not within any project directory, it will default to the winglang CLI project
  • If any paths are present in <args>, ensure they are either absolute or relative to the project directory

Full buildโ€‹

If you wish to perform a full build (similar to the one CI is running), just run this from the root:

npm run build

It will run the build, test and package targets on all modules.

The npx nx wing command can be executed from the root of the repository in order to build and run the compiler, SDK and the Wing CLI. Nx is configured to make sure only the changed components are built every time.

To get full diagnostics, use these exports:

export NODE_OPTIONS=--stack-trace-limit=100
export RUST_BACKTRACE=full

Now, you can edit a source file anywhere across the stack and run the compiler with arguments. For example:

npx nx wing -- test ../../examples/tests/valid/captures.w

This command runs the full Wing CLI with the given arguments. Nx will ensure the CLI build is updated.

How is the repository structured?โ€‹

The Wing repository is structured as a monorepo, which means that it contains multiple packages. Packages that are primarily meant to be run by users are in the apps directory, while packages that are primarily meant to be consumed as libraries are in the libs directory. Some packages are written in Rust, while others are written in TypeScript. Each has a README explaining what it does and how to use it. (If you see one missing, please open an issue and let us know!)

The Wing monorepo uses Nx to run commands across all code packages in the libs and apps folders. This means it includes packages that form the entire toolchain (compiler, SDK, IDE extension, etc), and the build and release bind them all together.

Nx will be installed alongside the rest of the project's dependencies after you run npm install from the root directory, and can be accessed with npx nx (it does not need to be installed separately).


The first time you run npm install it may take extra time to install the wasi-sdk for you. This is needed to compile Wing for WASM.

If you wish to install it manually, you may do so by running scripts/

๐Ÿงช How do I run tests?โ€‹

End-to-end tests are hosted under ./tools/hangar. To get started, first ensure you can build wing.

To run the tests (and update snapshots), run the following command from anywhere in the monorepo:

npx nx test hangar

How do I work only on the compiler?โ€‹

The following command runs the cargo tests, currently just ensures the valid examples compile and the invalid ones do not.

npx nx test wingc

The following command runs wingc on a file. This performs all the compilation steps. Run from the root or apps/wing.

npx nx wing -- compile <path to a .w file (full path, or relative to the location of the apps/wing folder)>

You can find the compilation artifacts in the apps/wing/targets folder.

To check that your code passes all the lints, run:

npx nx lint wingc

If you are using VS Code, you can show clippy errors in your IDE by installing the rust-analyzer extension and setting the option "Rust-analyzer โ€บ Check: Command" to "clippy" instead of "check".

How do I make changes to the Wing grammar?โ€‹

After making changes to grammar.js, run:

npx nx build tree-sitter-wing

To run the grammar tests (that are located in the test folder):

npx nx test tree-sitter-wing

To build the grammar as WASM for the web-based playground. Leave off --docker if you have emscripten setup locally:

npx tree-sitter-cli build-wasm --docker

To use the wasm grammar to run a web-based playground where you can explore the AST and test out highlight queries, run:

npx tree-sitter-cli playground

Make sure to also run build-wasm before each time the grammar changes

๐Ÿ”จ How do I build the VSCode extension?โ€‹

The VSCode extension is located in apps/vscode-wing. Most of the "logic" is in the language server, which is located in the Wing CLI at apps/wing/src/commands/lsp.ts.

To build the extension (also creates an installable .vsix file):

npx nx build vscode-wing

To run a new isolated VSCode instance with the extension installed:

npx nx dev vscode-wing

To modify the package.json, make sure to edit .projenrc.ts and rebuild.