Installing and running cedar

Pre-built CEDAR app

The easiest way to get CEDAR to run is to use one of our pre-built apps. You simply have to download the correct version, extract it, and execute the right file.

If you like, you can follow along this video to help you.

If you want to skip the video, follow these simple steps:

  1. Open the downloads section of the CEDAR website.
  2. Find the correct version for your operating system (please note that we only support 64-bit operating systems).
  3. Click the "Download" button and save the file on your hard-drive.
  4. Extract the file you have downloaded.
  5. Navigate into the folder that has been extracted and find the executable file (Linux/MacOS:, Windows: cedar.bat).
  6. Run the executable file. After a few seconds, the graphical user interface of CEDAR should appear.

In case we do not support your operating system, you will not be able to use the pre-built versions of CEDAR. If you do not want to install a different operating system or run one in a virtual machine, the alternative is to compile the source code of CEDAR, which is explained in the next section.

Installing from CEDAR source code

Supported operating systems

CEDAR runs on all major operating systems (Linux, MacOS, and Windows). The following manual for installing CEDAR is based on Ubuntu Linux 18.04 (LTS) and other Debian-based Linux distributions. We are working on making manuals for other operating systems available on this website.

Current issue: On Ubuntu 18.04, compilation works but CEDAR does not run. We are working on updating this installation manual to solve this issue.

Install all dependencies

CEDAR depends on many other libraries that you will have to install before you can compile CEDAR itself. Execute the following code in your terminal:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install libboost-all-dev libopencv-dev libopencv-contrib-dev qt5-default libqt5charts5-dev libqt5svg5-dev libqwt-qt5-dev libqglviewer-dev-qt5 cmake build-essential libfftw3-dev

Download the CEDAR source code

There are two ways to get the CEDAR sources.

  1. You can use Git, a distributed version control system; install it through your package manager

    sudo apt-get install git

    and then clone our official repository.

    git clone

    This will download a copy of the entire repository into a directory named cedar in your current working directory.

  2. If you do not want to use Git, you can download an archive containing the CEDAR sources


    unpack it


    and rename the resulting directory.

    mv cedar-master cedar


  1. Change into the cedar directory.

    cd cedar
  2. Create a copy of cedar.conf.example (in this folder) and name it cedar.conf.

    cp cedar.conf.example cedar.conf
  3. By default, cedar.conf is set up to work on Ubuntu 18.04. If you are running Ubuntu, skip this step. If you are running a different system, take a look at the file and make any changes for your individual system (e.g., installation prefix, external include paths) with an editor of your choosing.

  4. Create an out-of-source build folder and change into it:

    mkdir build
    cd build
  5. Generate makefiles specific for your platform to be able to compile cedar:

    cmake ..
  6. Compile cedar. You can save some time by compiling in multiple threads in parallel. To split the compilation process into n threads, add the optional parameter -j n to the following command:

    make [-j n]
  7. (optional) Run all unit tests to check whether everything works:

    make test
  8. (optional) Create the documentation. It will be generated in the folder build/doc:

    sudo apt-get install doxygen
    make doc

    Note that this may generate some warnings that you can usually ignore safely.

  9. (optional) Install cedar

    sudo make install

Running CEDAR

  1. Go into the binary folder of the cedar repository:

    cd ../bin
  2. Start the graphical user interface of cedar:

  3. Now, drag and drop elements from the top onto the working area and connect them up.

Have fun!