How to get Ookla’s Speedtest CLI on Windows/Ubuntu/macOS?

JOSEPH Blessingh
7 min readApr 20, 2020


Anyone using an Internet Service at your home or office may have gone to Ookla’s Speedtest website to check the internet speed or you might have accidentally stumbled upon it while you were browsing for speed test websites.

Ookla’s Speedtest is the definitive way to test the speed and performance of your internet connection. Every day, over ten million unique tests are actively initiated by users in the locations and at the times when their connectivity matters to them. Since their founding in 2006, an unparalleled total of more than 25 billion tests has been taken with Speedtest.

Ookla’s Speedtest has dedicated mobile apps, desktop apps, a browser extension, and a TV app as well for Apple TVs. But, did you know they also had a CLI version to check your internet speed?

Ookla’s Speedtest CLI

The idea of having a simple command to run from your Command Prompt is amazing. You can get to check your connectivity when you feel it is not working as expected or maybe you just wanted to check the speed without requiring to open the browser or a dedicated app for it. No doubt, the browser animation is 100x better than the CLI animation consisting of [=/] only. But, you got to appreciate the effort put on adding a CLI edition to their Application Suite. Their effort should not go in vain and unheard.

That’s what we are here for today. We are going to learn how to board the Speedtest CLI on to our PCs. We are going to be covering how to install it on 3 different Operating Systems:

  1. Windows 7/8/10
  2. Ubuntu
  3. macOS


1. WINDOWS 7/8/10

The windows installation might be the trickiest when comparing to Ubuntu and macOS. We need to set an environment variable for Speedtest to make it work from a Command Prompt from any directory otherwise it just works from the directory where the file is placed.

Don’t worry if you can’t understand. I divide the process into 2 parts to make it simple. The first part includes downloading the file, creating a directory and placing the file. The second part includes setting an environment variable for the directory. This helps in running the command from the CommandLine.


  1. Head over to
  2. Scroll down to find Download for Windows button & click on the button to download the file.
  3. The file is a .zip file that gets downloaded.
  4. Open the folder which contains the file.
  5. If you have WinRAR, well and good else we can manage with the default Windows Extraction tool.
  6. You need to extract the zip file downloaded by right-clicking the file and extract it.
  7. There will be 2 files from the zip when extracted, speedtest.exe &
  8. is a ReadMe file that contains all the information about Speedtest CLI for windows. We are only interested in speedtest.exe.
  9. Create a directory anywhere on your system with a name related to Speedtest and place the speedtest.exe in the folder.
  10. It’s preferable to extract the zip directly in some directory where you usually install applications. But then, the choice is yours. If this much is done, we have completed Part 1 of the process successfully.
Extracting with WinRAR


  1. Open up your Windows Start Menu and search env & click on Edit the system environment variables.
  2. A new System Properties window opens up. Click on Environment Variables Button.
  3. You might be able to see 2 sections, namely User Variables, and System Variables.
  4. Under User Variables, there will be an entry as Path. Double click it or click it and press on Edit.
  5. Another window should pop up right now, here you need to click on New to enter a new entry.
  6. The new entry is nothing but the directory path in which you placed speedtest.exe.
  7. The entry should be something similar to my last entry. If you have finished all the steps, that marks the successful completion of Part 2 of the process. All we got to do now is to test it on CLI.
Adding the environment variable

Alright, to test it out. Fire up your Command Prompt or the latest Windows Terminal(Preview). Type in:

You will be asked to accept the license. Accept it and it should show the Speedtest results in a minute. The animation is the showstopper of the Ookla’s Speedtest CLI Tool.
You can achieve some variations and other functionalities by adding a flag to the command. Some useful flags are:

--version     Check the version of the CLI tool
--help Prints usage information
-a Decimal prefix(bps, kbps, Mbps, Gbps)
-A Decimal prefix(B/s, kB/s, MB/s, GB/s)
Speedtest on Windows

(Open in the gif in a new tab to view it properly)
Oops, did you get Rick Roll’D? Nah, not exactly!! But, it’s cool right, having a custom gif background for your command prompt. All thanks to the Windows Terminal(Preview) you can make it possible. Check my article on it:

Life grants nothing to us mortals without Hardwork. But, don’t worry cuz all that pain you took makes you look cooler!

2. UBUNTU (or any Debian Distro)

Unlike Windows, Ubuntu has got the easiest installation method. All you need to do is to run 1 command to install the Speedtest CLI.

  1. Fire up a new terminal by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T.
  2. Type in:
    sudo apt install speedtest-cli
  3. That’s it. The installation is finished.
Installing Speedtest-CLI on Ubuntu

To check if Speedtest is installed or not, you can type in:
speedtest --version or speedtest-cli --version
Both the commands are supported and are the same. But, typing in Speedtest is convenient than the latter.

To run it, you can type in:
speedtest or speedtest-cli

The other flags supported for the command can be checked out with:
speedtest --help

Some useful flags to use:

--bytes   Display values in bytes instead of bits.
--json show basic information in JSON format. Speed in bit/s
--share Generate and provide a URL to the
Speedtest on Ubuntu

(Open in the gif in a new tab to view it properly)

The animation on Ubuntu looks cheap. Windows and macOS have better animation but the installation process is the easiest on Ubuntu. A Small Price to Pay for Salvation.

3. macOS

Installing Ookla’s Speedtest CLI is as simple as typing in 3 commands. Well, the prerequisite is brew installed on the system. Don’t worry if you don’t have it installed. We will go together over it.

  1. Fire up a terminal and type in this to install brew
    /bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL"
  2. It will ask for your permission and password a few times. It installs certain tools required for brew and installs brew as well.
  3. Then, type in:
brew tap teamookla/speedtest
brew update
brew install speedtest --force

This should pretty much install Speedtest-CLI for your macOS.

Alright, time to test it out. Type in
speedtest --version
This should show you the current version of Speedtest-CLI installed.
To run it, you can type in:

The other flags supported for the command can be checked out with:
speedtest --help

Some useful flags to use:

-a            Decimal prefix(bps, kbps, Mbps, Gbps)
-A Decimal prefix(B/s, kB/s, MB/s, GB/s)

(Open the gif in a new tab to view it properly.)

Installing on macOS was as easy as brew-ing a cup of Coffee, right guys??!!

So, that was all to the article on how to install Speedtest-CLI. Ookla also has instructions on how to install this on Fedora and CentOS on their site. Do give it a check if you use Fedora/centos. I didn’t have any interest in covering those Operating Systems without checking it myself. So, I didn’t cover it.

Before I wind it up, I would like to take out the time to praise Ryan, my good friend, who helped me give a screen recording from his MacBook. But, I ended up using my Screen Recording. I would also like to thank the quarantine, I was able to finish this article.

Thank you so much for reading. Did you enjoy the read? If you felt I went off or wasn’t clear in any part, drop down a comment below!! Didn’t enjoy the read? Probably it’s because this was my second article on Medium. Third might be the charm. Follow me and get notified of the third one.