Getting Started

Getting started on Flutter is easy with just a few downloads and commands. They are few variations how you can setup Flutter and will show you the most common route. To build and run a flutter app you will need:

  • Flutter SDK
  • IDE – I recommend Android Studio
  • Plugins – Flutter and Dart plugins for Android Studio

This is a quick setup guide. If you need more details or are having trouble, you can find more details going through the Flutter Getting Started documentation.

Flutter SDK

  1. Download the Flutter SDK, choose the latest one available.
    • For Windows, you will need to ensure you have PowerShell 5.0+ and Git for Windows installed
    • For MacOS and Linux, ensure you have bash, mkdir, rm, git, curl, unzip, which
  2. Extract the SDK any location. e.g. c:\flutter or /usr/local
  3. Set your Flutter Path environment variable, preferably permanently.
    • For Windows, you can enter the following command setx path "%path%;c:\flutter\bin\"
    • For MacOS and Linux, you will want to open or create $HOME/.bash_profile and add this line export PATH=/usr/local/flutter/bin:$PATH
  4. Close all command or terminal windows.
  5. Open a command or terminal windows and type flutter doctor

Editor Setup

Android Studio

  1. Install Android Studio 3.0 or higher.
  2. Once installed, you will need to install the Flutter and Dart plugins.
  3. Open the plugin settings
    1. For Windows and Linux, go to File > Settings then select Plugins
    2. For MacOS, go to Preferences > Plugins
    3. Press Browse Repositories, and search and install Flutter and Dart plugins.

Create New Flutter App

  1. Select File > New > New Flutter Project
  2. Select Flutter Application, press Next.
  3. Name your App, and press Next.
  4. Set your Company domain and press Finish.

Your new flutter app will have a file: lib/main.dart. This is your main app code. Select your device, and press run  and you will see your app load.

VS Code

  1. Install VS Code 1.20.1 or higher
  2. Once installed, open VS Code
  3. Go to View > Extensions
  4. Search for Dart and press install

Create New Flutter App

  1. Go to View > Command Palette
  2. Type in flutter and select Flutter: New Project
  3. Type in the name of your project, in all lowercase
  4. Select a folder to create the project in

Your new app will be created. In here you can go to lib/main.dart. This is your main app code.

Make sure you have a device or emulator running. On Mac you will need Xcode if you want the iOS simulators. On WIndows or Mac if you want the Android emulators you will need Android Studio. You can start an Android Emulator via the AVD Manager.

Then go to Debug > Start Debugging to start running your app.

Summary

We have worked through setting up everything you need to build and run a Flutter app. If you require more information on setting up your environment, please take a look at the Flutter Getting Started documentation.

This is just the beginning. You are soon going to see, how powerful and easy Flutter is.

Mobile Developer, Microsoft & Xamarin MVP

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© 2018 Adam Pedley