Learn Ruby On Rails

Get the book that is called "The best Rails book for beginners."

How to Order

Get a solid start on Ruby on Rails web development with this book by renowned teacher and author Daniel Kehoe. It's the only tutorial that covers Rails 4.1.

Learn in a weekend

Build a real-life web application, using the newest Rails 4.1 version.

  • Install Rails
  • Mac, Linux, or Windows
  • Recommended gems
  • Front-end frameworks
  • Troubleshooting techniques
  • Where to get help
  • Rails challenges

Master the basics

No other tutorial does a better job of explaining basic concepts.

  • Ruby language literacy
  • Rails directory structure
  • Request-response cycle
  • Model-view-controller architecture
  • Static and dynamic pages
  • Forms processing

Work professionally

Learn the practices you'll use in the workplace.

  • Ruby Version Management
  • Workflow with Git
  • Environment variables
  • Security practices
  • Product planning
  • Project management
  • Analytics

Prepare to go further

Learn Ruby on Rails is the best way to get the most from advanced tutorials and courses, preparing you for:

  • One Month Rails
  • Michael Hartl's Ruby on Rails Tutorial
  • Dev Bootcamp & other intensives

What People Are Saying

Learn Ruby on Rails is a great book for anyone starting to learn web development, giving you the context and explanations at the right time in an encouraging way.
—Linda Liukas, co-founder of Rails Girls
Probably the best tutorial available for people new to Rails.
—Mark Everhart
If you're new to web development, I recommend Daniel Kehoe's excellent Learn Ruby on Rails book. Learn Ruby on Rails is the gentlest introduction to Rails that I know of, so it's a great place for beginners to start.
—Michael Hartl, author of the Ruby on Rails Tutorial

Is It For You?

This book is written for YOU if you are new to Ruby on Rails and...

  • You've got experience with the web and need to learn Rails
  • You don't know how to program—but want to learn
  • You want to build an application
  • You want to pursue a career as a professional web developer

About the Author

Daniel Kehoe is a former writer and editor at PC WORLD and NeXTWORLD magazines, who is known for a lively and entertaining writing style. Kehoe has built web applications since the web's beginnings in 1991 and has worked with Rails since 2006 as a consultant and technical cofounder for startups. He is well-known in the Rails community for the popular RailsApps project, which offers tutorials and example applications for professional Rails developers.

Available exclusively by subscription.

A subscription to the RailsApps project gets you the book plus additional tutorials. You'll get regular updates to the book, plus tools for starter applications. All for only $19/month. Subscribe and cancel anytime—the book is yours to keep.

Comments

Have a question or comment about the book? It's great to hear from newcomers who are getting started with Rails.

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Read a Review…

What Experts Are Saying…

  • Learn Ruby on Rails is a great book for anyone starting to learn web development, giving you the context and explanations at the right time in an encouraging way. Linda Liukas, co-founder of Rails Girls, 1 Oct 2013

  • If you're new to web development, I recommend Daniel Kehoe's excellent Learn Ruby on Rails book. Learn Ruby on Rails is the gentlest introduction to Rails that I know of, so it's a great place for beginners to start. Michael Hartl, author of the Ruby on Rails Tutorial, 30 Jan 2014

  • I love what you're doing with this book. Specifically, that you're explaining and putting in context the whole ecosystem around Rails. Much needed for people just entering the field. Avdi Grimm, 1 Oct 2013

What Readers Are Saying…

  • I finished your tutorial last week and really enjoyed it. I just wanted to say that I went to the London Ruby User Group meetup last week following completion of your tutorial, and met a guy there who has now invited me to his company for a three month trial period as an entry level Rails developer. Your tutorial added a huge amount to my ability to talk generally about Rails and demonstrate a desire to teach myself the framework. Luke Bennellick, 3 September 2014

  • I am really enjoying the book. The content about how programming is actually done in practice (e.g. explaining tools, project management, etc.) is one of the most helpful things I’ve read since it isn’t available elsewhere. Joseph Brown, 14 August 2014

  • The book was awesome and very well written. Thank you for writing it. Matthew Meyers, 16 July 2014

  • I’ve been a fan of your works for a while, especially because you’re always staying on top of updates and don’t assume knowledge. A lot of books and references out there fail to stay up-to-date when new releases of Rails comes out but you always seem to get releases at just the right time! Thanks for that. Ryan Le, 9 June 2014

  • I am working through the book and have been so happy and impressed with the depth of this resource! I really appreciate how you explain the context surrounding making apps with Rails beyond just the code. Just wanted to say thanks! Jessica, 22 April 2014

  • What a treat! You do a superb job on your materials and they flow perfectly with the way I learn things. You provide the perfect amount of detail with explanations. So great job! Mark Nielsen, 22 April 2014

  • I have a lot of programming experience, but Rails was just beating me - even after doing Michael Hartl's (excellent) tutorial. Your back-to-basics approach is already filling the gaps. There is just so much to learn and having someone explain it properly is what I needed. I already feel like I have been saved from months of slogging it out on my own. Thanks for saving my (Rails) bacon. Kevin McCaughey, 21 March 2014

  • We've started a book club for girls learning with Learn Ruby on Rails that is going great -- so great in fact that we have requests from people willing to join that were not at the Rails Girls Warsaw event but would still love to learn this way. Thank you so much for giving the participants an easy start into world of web development, I'm sure it means the world to them! Magdalena Wójcik, 17 March 2014

  • I am doing a bootcamp in London (Maker Academy), where I am getting into Rails at the moment. My very first Rails app was based on your book, which I have to say is one of the best books I have ever read in my life. Thank you very much for making this. Rolando Barbella, 6 March 2014

  • I just wanted to say thanks for the Learn Ruby on Rails tutorial. I went through the Hartl tutorial first, and while great, it's too much, too fast. I feel like the highly introductory nature of your tutorial (build from scratch: the controller, the model, the view, sans database) helped me really understand how things fit together. Alex Kaja, 4 March 2014

  • I am at ground zero with Rails and Ruby and I am following your book. I must say that I never found so many resources and tools bundled in any other book or video tutorial so kudos on that. Paul Csiki, 5 February 2014

  • Just wanted to thank you for the wonderful Learn Ruby on Rails book. I've been trying to study Rails for the past couple of months, but was bogged down. Your course is easy to follow and has taught me all the basic details that I was expecting to learn. By far this has been the best book I have read. Aniruddha Barapatre, 6 January 2014

  • I’m enjoying the Learn Ruby on Rails book immensely. I had previously completed Hartl's Rails Tutorial, so I wasn’t really a newbie, but I am still learning a great deal from your tutorial. I am especially grateful for your treatment and explanation of the various gems. Steve Riley, 23 Dec 2013

  • I will be starting a new job here in SF, due in no small part to what I've learned here from the RailsApps Project. Joseph May, 23 Dec 2013

  • Learn Ruby on Rails by Daniel Kehoe is a good tutorial. In fact, it's probably the best tutorial available for people new to Rails. I think it's a solid tutorial that is a good starting point for anyone who wants to learn Rails. If nothing else it has given me a good foundation upon which to build via more complex tutorials and books. Mark Everhart 9/19/2013

  • It's very well written. Other books present way too many new concepts at a time. For example Hartl's book is very well made, but too complex for a beginner, so it's very easy to get lost. Your book instead is an ideal starting point for Rails beginners, and avoids scaffolding that produces much messy and unused code. Giacomo Lepori 9/22/2013

  • Great work! I really like the way you build the book with all the additional links and info. We are three beginner railsgirls and have been staring at code for hours to find out where some information came from—but you can't find out unless you know about Rails theory and magic. It gets better after a while thanks to the nice tutorials you do. Daniela Zimmermann 9/19/2013

  • I was impressed. The tutorials covered things that were relevant, and practical. I often find tutorials lead you to building things that aren't that useful, so it was refreshing to get dumped into something that I could immediately see the practicalities of using, and how I could expand on the knowledge gained from the exercise. Joe Sutton 9/18/2013

  • The book is great to follow. Michelle Merriweather 9/16/2013

  • Take if from one who is just starting out and has been over innumerable materials on Ruby and Rails, I've not read anything as easy going as your book. It has just the right amount of everything to entice any Rails newbie to look beyond those initial stumbling blocks and unto the glory that lies ahead. In my honest opinion, it is the best Rails beginner tutorial book out there that I've come across. Paul Dariye 9/14/2013

  • The book kept me very interested and focused. I feel the author is sitting next to me and teaching me each and every concept. I like the writing. Though English is not my primary language, I am easily following it. Syed Murtza 9/12/2013

  • Most tutorials jump right into Ruby/Rails and offer the reader no context regarding software development as a whole. Your intro chapters discussing the Ruby ecosystem and the Rails framework were a great help in getting a "big picture" overview. I also thought the chapters about setting up the proper dev environment (RVM, Sublime, GitHub) were really good. I really appreciated the tutorial and found it very helpful. Dave Mox 9/6/2013

  • Overall, it is an excellent beginner document. I found the text easily understandable, although I am not a programmer (other than an amateur hacker). Norman A. Cohen, M.D. 7/14/2013

  • I liked it very much and I understood everything (I new to Rails and developing in general). I also liked that it was possible for me to skip one or two paragraphs explaining something I already new without having the feeling of being lost. The book is well written and understandable. Julia Mokus 7/10/2013

  • Just finished reading the book. I learned a lot (discovered new gems, debugging, deploy). I would definitely recommend it to a friend. I found it very useful. I learned things I didn't know about (setting proper environment when entering the project folder). Also: good introduction to Git (time machine example), and MVC explanation (clear and detailed). But the book is challenging, it's not "walk in a park" easy, especially when it comes to understanding Ruby code. It could be a little overwhelming for beginners to learn all this. Alexey Ershov 8/29/2013

  • I just downloaded your book a couple of days ago. I'm totally new to Rails, and programming. I've done the Ruby course on Codecademy, but apart from that I know very little. I love that you begin by talking through the bigger picture stuff of app development, not just straight into how to use Rails. I think this is really important as it grounds the book in the real world. One of the big things I found doing the Codecamedy courses was that I didn't remember what I learned, partly because they can be kind of abstract. They guide you through the steps, "Here's an array, here's a hash, etc etc" but this is often not linked back to "This is how you might use those things in the real world." I've already learnt several things I had no idea about from your book—pair programming, Kanban, user stories. I already feel like, at the end of this book, I might actually have a go at developing my first app. Richard Vankoningsveld 8/20/2013

  • Really appreciate the book and huge thanks for your hard work. This book is very useful for me. I upgraded my knowledge of Rails. Everything that you write is great! Hendri Firmana 8/21/2013

  • I am currently living in Bangladesh. I read your articles and downloaded your book. It's really useful to me as a beginner with Ruby on Rails. Sukanta Ghosh 8/21/2013

  • I attended DevBootCamp earlier this year and this is the kind of reference book they need both for prep and throughout the course! It is really well done. I am just finishing up EdX 169.2 and I have a new appreciation for how you introduce the user stories early on in the development of the sample app in the book. Carolyn Porter 8/23/2013

  • As a new user of Rails—indeed a new webmaster, knowing HTML, CSS and a tiny bit of JS—I can say your book was very useful and for the most part very easy to follow. I thought your graphic on the MVC flow was kind of lame (especially the drawing of the monitor!). I got a little lost in the weeds a few times, but after taking a break and reading again things were clear. All in all I'd say you did a great job and told quite a few nuggets of information that I'd not seen before. I'm using the book as reference while I assemble my church website. Tom Connolly 8/23/2013

  • First off, you're awesome, and thank you very much for this book. I have learned so much from it already. I'm still a beginner so coding can be pretty discouraging. I learned some stuff about Ruby on Codecademy.com but I got lazy and stopped for many months. So I went on Reddit and posted about it and some guy replied to me suggesting your book, so I was thinking okay, I'll give it a try. (Every time I try to find beginner stuff they always assume you know all these terms, and often they assume you have previous programming knowledge with other languages.) So I started reading your book and I found it was very easy to follow along as a beginner. I love how you go into detail with all the instructions. For me it's fantastic. It has made it enjoyable for me and, as a person who hates reading, it makes it less tedious because I don't have to keep re-reading something over and over. I am going to try and read this book again after I'm finished because I really want all this information to stick with me. Brandon Schabel 8/28/2013

  • I found it very well-written and very encouraging! I am currently learning to code in the setting of Code First: Girls in the UK and am working in a start up doing product management. Hence I enjoyed your approach of explaining agile development and test-driven development a lot. I very much appreciate the book for deepening my knowledge about Rails. Jutta Frieden 8/27/2013

  • The book has definitely helped me to bridge a gap. I feel more aware, and comfortable, with the Rails 'magic'. Jonathan Miller 8/16/2013

  • I like it, especially the clear and short explanations. You gave good references to many helpful tools. The book gives a broad understanding of what Ruby + Rails do. Alexey Dotokin 7/14/2013

  • You're good at explaining things in a clear and digestible way. I am in the first iteration of General Assembly's Los Angeles Web Development Immersive. We're learning a lot of things rapidly so it's really helpful to read something that helps glue all the pieces together. Vanessa Vengco 8/13/2013

  • Contains very useful information not only for developers but also aspiring entrepreneurs. The information about various online resources is exemplary. Sakib Ash 8/16/2013

  • I'm reading your ebook and it is really amazing! I'm learning Rails and it is a pleasure! Raphael Silva 8/14/2013

  • I tried several different resources for a beginner—ranging from the more common online tutorials to books—and must say your work is among the best I've discovered. Thom Mikail S. Berre 8/14/2013

  • I am going through the book with ease so my first impression is that is understandable. If I had to rate the book I would say so far a 9.5/10, and that .5 is because of the font. I would have used Verdana but this is a preference from my eyes to read any screen. I'm located in Argentina and all my learning will get invested on a project for HR management. Alejandro Angeriz 8/8/2013

  • I am a student at General Assembly and your book has been invaluable to me thus far. Thank you so much for writing it and giving us newbies an excellent tool. Erin Nedza 8/9/2013

  • The book is a perfect beginners friendly book. Easy to read and absorb, a fantastic digest that brings all the scattered pieces together. It's not a read-once-and-shelf book, rather you'll want to read it again after learning some Rails to get some great ah-hah moments. More importantly you will pick up several vital Linux commands. The most exciting parts are the insider tips. I'm glad I'm reading them before I need them. Richard Afolabi 8/13/2013

The book is provided by RailsApps, an open source project, providing example applications and tutorials, supported by subscribers.

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Read online or download the book in three ebook formats: PDF, Mobi (Kindle), ePUB (iBooks). Rails changes frequently and the book is updated often. Your subscription gets you every update. Questions? Ask the author.