Build tools

Bootstrap uses Grunt for its CSS and JavaScript build system and Jekyll for the written documentation. Our Gruntfile includes convenient methods for working with the framework, including compiling code, running tests, and more.

Tooling setup

To use our Gruntfile and run our documentation locally, you’ll need a copy of Bootstrap’s source files, Node, and Grunt. Follow these steps and you should be ready to rock:

  1. Download and install Node, which we use to manage our dependencies.
  2. Install the Grunt command line tools, grunt-cli, with npm install -g grunt-cli.
  3. Navigate to the root /bootstrap directory and run npm install to install our local dependencies listed in package.json.
  4. Install Ruby, install Bundler with gem install bundler, and finally run bundle install. This will install all Ruby dependencies, such as Jekyll and plugins.

When completed, you’ll be able to run the various Grunt commands provided from the command line.

Using Grunt

Our Gruntfile includes the following commands and tasks:

Task Description
grunt Run grunt to run tests locally and compile the CSS and JavaScript into /dist. Uses Sass, Autoprefixer, and UglifyJS.
grunt dist grunt dist creates the /dist directory with compiled files. Uses Sass, Autoprefixer, and UglifyJS.
grunt test Runs scss-lint, ESLint and QUnit tests headlessly in PhantomJS (used for CI).
grunt docs Builds and tests CSS, JavaScript, and other assets which are used when running the documentation locally via jekyll serve.
grunt watch This is a convenience method for watching just Sass files and automatically building them whenever you save.

Switching Sass compilers

Bootstrap will be compiled with libsass by default, but you can opt into traditional Ruby Sass by setting the TWBS_SASS environment variable. Two options are supported:

For example, run TWBS_SASS=sass grunt to test and build Bootstrap with Ruby Sass.


Bootstrap uses Autoprefixer (included in our Gruntfile and build process) to automatically add vendor prefixes to some CSS properties at build time. Doing so saves us time and code by allowing us to write key parts of our CSS a single time while eliminating the need for vendor mixins like those found in v3.

We maintain the list of browsers supported through Autoprefixer in a separate file within our GitHub repository. See /grunt/postcss.js for details.

Local documentation

Running our documentation locally requires the use of Jekyll, a decently flexible static site generator that provides us: basic includes, Markdown-based files, templates, and more. Here’s how to get it started:

  1. Run through the tooling setup above to install Jekyll (the site builder) and other Ruby dependencies with bundle install.
  2. From the root /bootstrap directory, run bundle exec jekyll serve in the command line.
  3. Open http://localhost:9001 in your browser, and voilà.

Learn more about using Jekyll by reading its documentation.

Howto create an icons library using icomoon

To create an icons library using icomoon, you must first open the website icomoon into your browser and download the config file orange-icons.json.

Create your own project

Go to the top left menu and select manage projects:

manage projects menu

Then, select import project link and select the file orange-icons.json It will load all the Orange Icons into a new project

import project link

You can now access to all the icons by clicking onto Load

Load project

Select your icons

You will find 2 sets : the 1st one contains all the Orange Frames and Popout, the 2nd one contains all the Solaris icons.

Select mode activated

By default there is no selected icon, you can make your selection for your own project. Check that you are in selection mode (3rd icon in the top bar, after import icons and icon library), when an icon is selected, its border becomes yellow.

If you need to add a specific icon which is no present into the selection provided, create a new empty set for your project, and add icons to it.

Warning! Icons format recommendation
You need to import icons in SVG, within a square layout to preserve icons consistency ; if the layout is not a square, you will have some surprises.

Example of bad icon import

Download and adapt your project font

Have you finished your shopping?

Now you can create your font for your project.
Click onto generate font at the bottom right of the page.

Generate font link

Depending of the number of icons selected, it can take a little bit of time…

Setting your font preferences

preference link

Now you have a Download button at the bottom right but WAIT!!! We know, you want to download your font but first you need to make some change into preferences to name your font with a name dedicated to YOUR project.

On the top menu bar, click onto Preferences.

By default the font-family is named orange-icons, rename it for your project (MYPROJECT-icons or other) and customize the class prefix by adding your project name to create a unique css selector. You also can get Stylesheet variables for scss or less and if you want change the version. And uncheck IE8 support if you rely on Boosted 4!

Option window

Close the Preferences window, you’re now ready to download your font.

The download is a zip file,

Zip contains

Unzip it. The demo.html and demo-files folder offer a sample page displaying the icons - you don’t need them for your project. The fonts folder is the one you need! It contains MYPROJECT-icons.eot, svg, ttf and woff files And finally the “style.css” file contains all the css classes.

Rename it to MYPROJECT-icons.css.

Adapt your file for SCSS or LESS if needed, you can now use your icons.


Should you encounter problems with installing dependencies or running Grunt commands, uninstall all previous dependency versions (global and local). Then, rerun npm install.