Compiling and Installing the Package

These instructions only pertain to UNIX-like systems, where the configure scripts can be run. If you want to use Microsoft Visual Studio to compile the code, please see the Visual Studio wiki. If you use Cygwin or MSYS under Windows, see also the notes on building COIN-OR under these systems.

If you have problems, have a look at the troubleshooting page.

Compiling the Code

Assume that you have downloaded the package Pkg in the directory Coin-Pkg and that you have run the configure script with appropriate options successfully in the directory Coin-Pkg/build.

You can now compile the source code, including all subprojects, by typing in Coin-Pkg/build


The COIN Makefiles should work with any UNIX make. If you are using GNU make and want to use the parallel compilation feature, you can do this by specifying the -j N option to make, where N is the number of parallel compilations you want to start. A good value for N is the number of available processors plus 1.

If the compilation fails, the screen output hopefully helps you to find out what is going wrong. The output is quite verbose, and you see all command lines that are executed. Since most of the COIN-OR Makefiles are generated with the GNU packages automake and libtool they are somewhat complicated and might look confusing. Unless you know what you are doing, it not easy to change the Makefiles. If you want to make modifications, you should modify the files and use the GNU autotools to generate the real Makefile.

Testing the Compilation

Most of the COIN-OR projects provide a unit test (in the test subdirectory), which can be used to verify if the compiled code works correctly. If you want to test the compilation for the main project only (e.g., Clp) you type in Coin-Clp/build

make test

If you want to run the tests for all subprojects (e.g. CoinUtils and Clp), type in Coin-Clp

make tests

This will run the available unit test for Clp and all other downloaded COIN-OR projects.

You don't need to type make before running make test or make tests.

Installing the Executables, Libraries and Header Files

To install the final product of the compilation (the reason you are doing all this work) you type

make install

Again, you don't need to type make first. This will install the executable files in $prefix/bin, the libraries in $prefix/lib, the header files in $prefix/include/coin, documentation in $prefix/share/coin/doc/Pkg, and data files in $prefix/share/coin/Data/Pkg. Here, $prefix stands for the installation directory, which by default is the directory in which you ran the configure script (which on this page we assumed to be Coin-Pkg/build). The installation directory is otherwise the argument you specified with the --prefix argument for configure.

In the share/coin/doc/Pkg directory you may also see a pkg_addlibs.txt file (such as clp_addlibs.txt). This contains a string with linker flags necessary to link against the library of the Pkg project (such as -lz if you are using the zlib GNU package), adapted to your system and configuration settings. If you want to link with an installed COIN-OR library, you should either use pkg-config or specify the context of the corresponding pkg_addlibs.txt file in the link command.

Some COIN-OR projects come with examples that show how a generated library can be used. In that case, in the examples subdirectory for the project, you will find a simple Makefile to compile the examples, adapted to your settings. If you want to link your own code with a COIN-OR library, it is probably best to start with this example Makefile; read more here.

Further Makefile Targets

Additional targets that can be specified in a "make" command are

  • clean: This deletes all compiler generated files.
  • distclean: This deletes everything that has been created since running the configure script, except for installed files.
  • uninstall: This deletes all files that have been previously copied by a make install, but it doesn't touch any other compiler generated files.
Last modified 7 years ago Last modified on Feb 27, 2011 10:57:47 AM