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nRF Connect

Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF Connect extension turns VS Code into a complete IDE for developing applications for devices from the nRF91 Series, nRF53 Series, and nRF52 Series on Windows, macOS, or Linux. This includes an interface to the compiler and linker, an RTOS-aware debugger, a seamless interface to the nRF Connect SDK, and a serial terminal.

Installing dependencies

Before you use the nRF Connect extension for the first time, make sure the following tools are installed on your system. This applies to all operating systems.

Installing the Toolchain Manager


On M1-based Mac machines, you must install the Universal version of SEGGER J-Link.

  1. Install the nRF Command Line Tools.

  2. Install and open nRF Connect for Desktop to access the Toolchain Manager.


    nRF Command Line Tools and nRF Connect for Desktop are fully supported on Ubuntu version 20.04 LTS. If you are using Ubuntu 22.04 LTS, you must manually install the packages libhogweed and libnettle as dependencies of the Toolchain v2.0.0 package.

  3. Install and open the Toolchain Manager.

  4. Install the latest version of the nRF Connect SDK.

  5. Install VS Code.

  6. From the Toolchain Manager, click on the Open VS Code button to install the nRF Connect Extension Pack. You will see a list of any missing extensions that need to be installed.

    Click Install missing extensions. Relaunch both the Toolchain Manager and nRF Connect for Desktop to see if any remaining tools still need to be installed.

Installing manually on Linux

If you are using nRF Connect SDK version 2.0.0 or higher on Linux, follow the steps above. If you are using an older version of nRF Connect SDK, follow the steps below.

  1. Install the nRF Command Line Tools.

  2. Install the nRF Connect SDK by following the manual installation steps.

  3. Install VS Code.

  4. Install the nRF Connect Extension Pack.

Opening the extension

Open the Extension View by clicking on the nRF Connect icon in the Activity Bar.

Open the extension