Jekyll helps you create static websites from templates and content. That’s what this blog is created using. Here is the step through on how I put together the work area for my blog. This is not the only way, it most likely isn’t the best method. But it is the way I built my Jekyll work area. I’m not covering all steps because the pages to download the required packages have excellent walk throughs. Default values are used as mush as possible. If a specific value is required I will make an effort to mention it and if possible explain any reasons I find.

Jekyll has a installation guide. Their instructions covers more types of software.

Oracle VM VirtualBox

Using a virtual machine allows the work area to be set up without worrying about messing up other tools.
VitualBox is a free package available from Oracle.

Whatever software you use, the rest of the settings here shouldn’t change. Use whatever you have already.


Jekyll is designed to work on Linux. Mint is a Linux version based on Unbuntu. Mint already is preloaded with a lot of the tools that you already need. A big download but well worth the time. Mint is available free at LinuxMint. I am using Linux Mint 17 with Cinnamon.

The more resources you give the virtual machine the better it will run, course that means that anything else running on your machine will lose some power. Adjust the settings to create a balance you can work with. Changes to the defaults

  • upped the memory to 1024 mb
  • upped the video memory to 128mb

There is a wide selection of Linux versions. Using a different version will change the steps to setup a workarea by quite a bit. A big difference will be how to install software. Ubantu (and Mint) uses apt-get. In this step through, apt-get is used quite a bit. I used RubyGem to update itself and install Jekyll. I tried using apt-get to install Jekyll but I had issues. As new versions come out, other methods may work better.


Ruby needs to be installed. Using the apt-get tool on Mint, the required version is easily installed.

sudo apt-get install ruby1.9.1-dev

There is a great complete list of methods to download and update Ruby at Ruby.


While troubleshooting my installation, error messages concerning JavaScript appeared. Someone mentioned installing NodeJS. It worked after installing. Your installation may not need this. If you get Javascript errors, installation NodeJS.

sudo apt-get install nodejs


RubyGems needs to be at the latest version. More information can be found at

sudo gem install rubygems-update
sudo update_rubygems


When Jekyll installs it listed errors that went away if I installed RDoc first. Jekyll still worked without this but best to keep error messages gone.

sudo gem install rdoc


And finally Jekyl itself.

sudo gem install jekyll

What else?

Mint has a great software manager. Ecilpse or Geany can both be easily installed from the software manager.