You can install cryptography with pip:

$ pip install cryptography

Supported platforms

Currently we test cryptography on Python 2.6, 2.7, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, and PyPy 2.6+ on these operating systems.

  • x86-64 CentOS 7.x, 6.4 and CentOS 5.x
  • x86-64 FreeBSD 10
  • OS X 10.11 El Capitan, 10.10 Yosemite, 10.9 Mavericks, 10.8 Mountain Lion, and 10.7 Lion
  • x86-64 Ubuntu 12.04 LTS and Ubuntu 14.04 LTS
  • x86-64 Debian Wheezy (7.x), Jessie (8.x), and Debian Sid (unstable)
  • 32-bit and 64-bit Python on 64-bit Windows Server 2012

We test compiling with clang as well as gcc and use the following OpenSSL releases:

  • OpenSSL 0.9.8e-fips-rhel5 (RHEL/CentOS 5)
  • OpenSSL 0.9.8k
  • OpenSSL 0.9.8-latest (The most recent 0.9.8 release)
  • OpenSSL 1.0.0-fips (RHEL/CentOS 6.4)
  • OpenSSL 1.0.1
  • OpenSSL 1.0.1e-fips (RHEL/CentOS 7)
  • OpenSSL 1.0.1j-freebsd
  • OpenSSL 1.0.1f
  • OpenSSL 1.0.2-latest

On Windows

The wheel package on Windows is a statically linked build (as of 0.5) so all dependencies are included. Just run

$ pip install cryptography

If you prefer to compile it yourself you’ll need to have OpenSSL installed. You can compile OpenSSL yourself as well or use the binaries we build for our release infrastructure (openssl-release). Be sure to download the proper version for your architecture and Python (2010 works for Python 2.6, 2.7, 3.3, and 3.4 while 2015 is required for 3.5). Wherever you place your copy of OpenSSL you’ll need to set the LIB and INCLUDE environment variables to include the proper locations. For example:

C:\> \path\to\vcvarsall.bat x86_amd64
C:\> set LIB=C:\OpenSSL-win64\lib;%LIB%
C:\> set INCLUDE=C:\OpenSSL-win64\include;%INCLUDE%
C:\> pip install cryptography

Building cryptography on Linux

cryptography should build very easily on Linux provided you have a C compiler, headers for Python (if you’re not using pypy), and headers for the OpenSSL and libffi libraries available on your system.

For Debian and Ubuntu, the following command will ensure that the required dependencies are installed:

$ sudo apt-get install build-essential libssl-dev libffi-dev python-dev

For Fedora and RHEL-derivatives, the following command will ensure that the required dependencies are installed:

$ sudo yum install gcc libffi-devel python-devel openssl-devel

You should now be able to build and install cryptography with the usual

$ pip install cryptography

Using your own OpenSSL on Linux

Python links to OpenSSL for its own purposes and this can sometimes cause problems when you wish to use a different version of OpenSSL with cryptography. If you want to use cryptography with your own build of OpenSSL you will need to make sure that the build is configured correctly so that your version of OpenSSL doesn’t conflict with Python’s.

The options you need to add allow the linker to identify every symbol correctly even when multiple versions of the library are linked into the same program. If you are using your distribution’s source packages these will probably be patched in for you already, otherwise you’ll need to use options something like this when configuring OpenSSL:

$ ./config -Wl,--version-script=openssl.ld -Wl,-Bsymbolic-functions -fPIC shared

You’ll also need to generate your own openssl.ld file. For example:


You should replace the version string on the first line as appropriate for your build.

Static Wheels

Cryptography ships statically-linked wheels for OS X and Windows, ensuring that these platforms can always use the most-recent OpenSSL, regardless of what is shipped by default on those platforms. As a result of various difficulties around Linux binary linking, Cryptography cannot do the same on Linux.

However, you can build your own statically-linked wheels that will work on your own systems. This will allow you to continue to use relatively old Linux distributions (such as LTS releases), while making sure you have the most recent OpenSSL available to your Python programs.

To do so, you should find yourself a machine that is as similar as possible to your target environment (e.g. your production environment): for example, spin up a new cloud server running your target Linux distribution. On this machine, install the Cryptography dependencies as mentioned in Building cryptography on Linux. Please also make sure you have virtualenv installed: this should be available from your system package manager.

Then, paste the following into a shell script. You’ll need to populate the OPENSSL_VERSION variable. To do that, visit and find the latest non-FIPS release version number, then set the string appropriately. For example, for OpenSSL 1.0.2d, use OPENSSL_VERSION="1.0.2d".

When this shell script is complete, you’ll find a collection of wheel files in a directory called wheelhouse. These wheels can be installed by a sufficiently-recent version of pip. The Cryptography wheel in this directory contains a statically-linked OpenSSL binding, which ensures that you have access to the most-recent OpenSSL releases without corrupting your system dependencies.

set -e


virtualenv env
. env/bin/activate
pip install -U setuptools
pip install -U wheel pip
curl -O${OPENSSL_VERSION}.tar.gz
tar xvf openssl-${OPENSSL_VERSION}.tar.gz
cd openssl-${OPENSSL_VERSION}
./config no-shared no-ssl2 -fPIC --prefix=${CWD}/openssl
make && make install
cd ..
CFLAGS="-I${CWD}/openssl/include" LDFLAGS="-L${CWD}/openssl/lib" pip wheel --no-use-wheel cryptography

Building cryptography on OS X

The wheel package on OS X is a statically linked build (as of 1.0.1) so for users on 10.10 (Yosemite) and above you only need one step:

$ pip install cryptography

If you want to build cryptography yourself or are on an older OS X version cryptography requires the presence of a C compiler, development headers, and the proper libraries. On OS X much of this is provided by Apple’s Xcode development tools. To install the Xcode command line tools open a terminal window and run:

$ xcode-select --install

This will install a compiler (clang) along with (most of) the required development headers.

You’ll also need OpenSSL, which you can obtain from Homebrew or MacPorts.

To build cryptography and dynamically link it:


$ brew install openssl
$ env LDFLAGS="-L$(brew --prefix openssl)/lib" CFLAGS="-I$(brew --prefix openssl)/include" pip install cryptography


$ sudo port install openssl
$ env LDFLAGS="-L/opt/local/lib" CFLAGS="-I/opt/local/include" pip install cryptography

You can also build cryptography statically:


$ brew install openssl
$ env CRYPTOGRAPHY_OSX_NO_LINK_FLAGS=1 LDFLAGS="$(brew --prefix openssl)/lib/libssl.a $(brew --prefix openssl)/lib/libcrypto.a" CFLAGS="-I$(brew --prefix openssl)/include" pip install cryptography


$ sudo port install openssl
$ env CRYPTOGRAPHY_OSX_NO_LINK_FLAGS=1 LDFLAGS="/opt/local/lib/libssl.a /opt/local/lib/libcrypto.a" CFLAGS="-I/opt/local/include" pip install cryptography

Building cryptography with conda

Because of a bug in conda, attempting to install cryptography out of the box will result in an error. This can be resolved by setting the library path environment variable for your platform.

On OS X:

$ env DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH="$HOME/anaconda/lib" pip install cryptography

and on Linux:

$ env LD_LIBRARY_PATH="$HOME/anaconda/lib" pip install cryptography

You will need to set this variable every time you start Python. For more information, consult Greg Wilson’s blog post on the subject.