Jmol Installation Guide

Jmol is an open source Java-based program for viewing molecules.


Jmol can be difficult and time consuming to install. Try using the web based JSmol before attempting to install Java and Jmol. You will still need to download the molecular files needed, but your professor should make them available via Mycourses.

Using JSmol

JSmol allows you to open (click the open link just below the image viewer) files that have been downloaded to your computer.  Once selected you will see the Choose file option and will be prompted to Open the file location of the molecules. Once selected, hit the load button to view the selected file.

Before You Start

In order to run Jmol, you will need to install Java 8 in order to run it.

  1. Download Java for your Operating System:

    1. For macOS: jre-8u231-macosx-x64

    2. For Windows: jre-8u231-windows-i586-iftw

    3. If these downloads don't work, you can download Java from Oracle's website:

  2. Navigate to your downloads folder and open the downloaded file.

  3. Follow the steps in the installer to install Java.

  4. Once Java is installed, you may proceed to installing Jmol.


  1. Download the Chem119 compressed folder.

  2. Right click the folder and drag it to your Desktop or Documents folder and choose to Extract...

  3. Once it finishes extracting, open the Chem119 folder.

  4. Double click Jmol.jar

  5. Jmol should launch, opening to a black screen.


  1. To open a molecule, go to File → OpenMol

  2. If Jmol doesn't open on Windows when double clicking Jmol.jar, trying running the Jmol.bat file.

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