How to install Forex indicator? This question is asked by any beginner, who has read a detailed article about the indicator, downloaded an archive, and is ready to test the recommendations in practice. In fact, it is an elementary operation that takes a mere minute for experienced traders. After the beginners read our detailed instructions, they won’t have any questions either.

First of all, let’s review an installation into MetaTrader4 program (hereinafter MT4). Typically, the indicators are available for download in archives, which may contain files with the following extensions:

  • mq4 –open source indicator file, it can be opened and edited in MetaEditor;
  • ex4 – compiled indicator file;
  • dll – library required for complex indicators (for example, for swapping volumes with CME or option levels), mostly found in paid indicators;
  • tpl – template that allows you to restore the working window and settings;
  • txt, excel files and others – additional files that are not very common.


In order to understand how to install the Forex indicator, you must first find the folder for installation. At the moment, all dealing centers offer a new version of the terminal – namely, the 600 build and younger, so if the terminal was installed after the February 2014, you must take the following steps:

  1. Go to “File” menu and left-click at “Open data catalog”. The folder shown below will open.
  2. Place the template files (with .tpl extention) into the “Templates” folder.
  3. Then open MQL4, which houses all the other required directories.


The following picture briefly shows the mechanism of files distribution from the archive to the parent folders:

Now let’s find out how to install Forex indicator directly on the chart. After undergoing the procedure discussed above, the indicator is ready to use, and if it has no errors in the code, it will appear in the navigator with the colored icon right after you restart the terminal. In order to “attach” a treasured formula to the active chart, just left-click the desired indicator in the list and drag it to the chart holding down the mouse button. Another option is through a context menu: to do so, position the cursor on the name of the indicator, right-click it and select "attach to chart".

How to install Forex indicator into MetaTrader5

With MT5 terminal, the sequence of steps is totally identical, but you should pay attention to a few things: firstly, since it uses a different programming language, folder MQL4 will be replaced by MQL5 catalog. This is the same reason for MT4 indicators failing to work in MT5: they have their own format (ex5 and mq5).

Secondly, sometimes the terminal can’t see an indicator, even if it was placed in the appropriate folder. This turn of events means that it must be compiled. To do so, run MetaEditor either from the "Start" menu or directly from the terminal, open the source code of the desired indicator and press the “Compile” button in the menu.

We should note that the problem with the compilation is now rare: as a rule, the program does everything automatically, so if something unexpected occurred, it is better to write to the developers and describe the problem, or appeal to programmers asking them to check the code for errors.

It is impractical to describe how to install the Forex indicator into the older version of MT4, which was released before the 600 build, because, first of all, by abandoning the updates, the user creates problem for themselves as the dealing centers cease to support the older versions; and secondly, the developers constantly fix bugs with each new version, so abandoning the updates forces to endure the slow work of the terminal.

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