Using Go Version Manager (GVM)
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Using Go Version Manager (GVM)

Published on 11 November 2014

Warning: This article is outdated and kept here for reference only. From now on I prefer to use GoDeps instead.

Recently, I have been working on different go project and I need to manage different go environment relative to my projects. Coming from ruby and node, I searched for an equivalent of rvm or npm and found gvm (not to be confuse with the Groovy enVironment Manager). GVM offer you a simple way to manage your go version and, more importantly, your $GOPATH !

This article aims to explain how I use gvm and how to install it.


GVM is really simple to install, just copy-paste this command and your ready to go (no pun intented).

zsh < <(curl -s -S -L

Note: If you use bash, simply replace zsh with bash.

Create your first package set

A package set is a dedicated $GOPATH, nothing more (well, it can be a little more but it’s not in the scope of this article).

# List available go version (local)
gvm list

# List available go version (ready to be downloaded)
gvm listall

# Installing go
gvm install go1.3

# Using a version
gvm use go1.3

# Creating a pkgset
gvm pkgset create my-pkgset-name

# Configure environment variables
gvm pkgenv my-pkgset-name

# Using it
gvm pkgset use my-pkgset-name


To be consistent, I prefer to use a pkgset per project. And for each pkgset, I modify the environment (gvm pkgenv pkgset-name) to include the project directory in the $GOPATH variable.

For example, if I have this directory structure:


I will create a project-name pkgset and add the path /home/francois/go/dns-webhook-listener at the end of the $GOPATH variable (via the command gvm pkgenv project-name).

Note: in the environment file we cannot use the ~ as it will not be expanded.