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You can install Apify CLI either using Homebrew package manager on macOS or Linux or using NPM.

Via Homebrew

Run the following command:

brew install apify-cli


First, make sure you have Node.js version 18 or higher with NPM installed on your computer:

node --version
npm --version

Install or upgrade Apify CLI by running:

npm -g install apify-cli

If you receive a permission error, read npm's official guide on installing packages globally.

Alternatively, you can use Node Version Manager (nvm) and install Apify CLI only into a selected user-level Node version without requiring root privileges:

nvm install 18
nvm use 18
npm -g install apify-cli

After using either of these methods , verify that Apify CLI was installed correctly by running:

apify --version

which should print something like:

apify-cli/0.19.1 linux-x64 node-v18.17.0

Basic Usage

The following examples demonstrate the basic usage of Apify CLI.

Create a New Actor from Scratch

apify create my-hello-world

First, you will be prompted to select a template with the boilerplate for the Actor, to help you get started quickly. The command will create a directory called my-hello-world that contains a Node.js project for the Actor and a few configuration files.

Create a New Actor from Existing Project

cd ./my/awesome/project
apify init

This command will only set up local Actor development environment in an existing directory, i.e. it will create the .actor/actor.json file and apify_storage directory.

Before you can run your project locally using apify run, you have to set up the right start command in package.json under scripts.start. For example:

"scripts": {
"start": "node your_main_file.js",

You can find more information about by running apify help run.

Run the Actor Locally

cd my-hello-world
apify run

This command runs the Actor on your local machine. Now's your chance to develop the logic - or magic 😏

Login with your Apify account

apify login

Before you can interact with the Apify cloud, you need to create an Apify account and log in to it using the above command. You will be prompted for your Apify API token.

API token save directory

The command will store the API token and other sensitive information to ~/.apify.

Push the Actor to the Apify Cloud

apify push

This command uploads your project to the Apify cloud and builds an Actor from it. On the platform, Actor needs to be built before it can be run.

Run an Actor on the Apify Cloud

apify call

Runs the Actor corresponding to the current directory on the Apify Platform.

This command can also be used to run other Actors, for example:

apify call apify/hello-world

So what's in this .actor/actor.json File?

This file associates your local development project with an Actor on the Apify Platform. It contains information such as Actor name, version, build tag and environment variables. Make sure you commit this file to the Git repository.

For example, .actor/actor.json file can look as follows:

"actorSpecification": 1,
"name": "name-of-my-scraper",
"version": "0.0",
"buildTag": "latest",
"environmentVariables": {
"MYSQL_USER": "my_username",
"MYSQL_PASSWORD": "@mySecretPassword"
"dockerfile": "./Dockerfile",
"readme": "./",
"input": "./input_schema.json",
"storages": {
"dataset": "./dataset_schema.json",

Dockerfile field

If you specify the path to your Docker file under the dockerfile field, this file will be used for actor builds on the platform. If not specified, the system will look for Docker files at .actor/Dockerfile and Dockerfile in this order of preference.

Readme field

If you specify the path to your readme file under the readme field, the readme at this path will be used on the platform. If not specified, readme at .actor/ and will be used in this order of preference.

Input field

You can embed your input schema object directly in actor.json under input field. Alternatively, you can provide a path to a custom input schema. If not provided, the input schema at .actor/INPUT_SCHEMA.json and INPUT_SCHEMA.json is used in this order of preference.

Storages.dataset field

You can define the schema of the items in your dataset under the storages.dataset field. This can be either an embedded object or a path to a JSON schema file. You can read more about the schema of your actor output here.

Migration from deprecated config "apify.json"

Note that previously, actor config was stored in the apify.json file that has been deprecated. You can find the (very slight) differences and migration info in migration guidelines.