openFrameworks | Documentation table of contents


Installing MSYS2

Download link and instructionss can be found on the MSYS2 web site. Several installers (self extracting archive, XZ archive) are available; any will work with openFrameworks.

If you are going to use QtCreator, you should install MSYS2 in the default install folder, c:\msys64

Updating MSYS2

openFrameworks expects an up-to-date installation of MSYS2. As MSYS2 is a rolling-release distribution, even the latest installer may be out-of-date!

Let's update the MSYS2 installation. From any MSYS2 shell (MSYS2, MINGW64, UCRT64, ...), run :

pacman -Syu --noconfirm --needed

Depending on the packages to be updated, you may need to close the shell and run the previous command again. If your installation has been updated for some months, you may encounter additional problems. Additional instructions on the Updating MSYS2 page may help to solve them.

You are now ready to install openFrameworks.

Installing openFrameworks

IMPORTANT MSYS2 comes in many flavors : MSYS2 (msys2.exe), MINGW32 (mingw32.exe), MINGW64 (mingw64.exe), CLANG32 (clang32.exe), CLANG64 (clang64.exe), CLANGARM64 (clangarm64.exe) and UCRT64 (ucrt64.exe). Each flavor has its shell launcher in MSYS2 installation folder. This really important to remember as lots of problem with running OF with MSYS2 come from using the wrong flavor/shell.

As of 0.11.2+, MINGW64 is the recommended flavor to use.

For the following instructions, it assumed that MSYS2 is installed in C:\msys64. If it has been installed elsewhere, adapt the instructions to reflect your MSYS2 installation path.

Download and unzip the msys2 64bits version of oF which is MINGW64 flavor. DO NOT INSTALL oF in a folder having space or other

Open an MINGW64 shell (C:\msys64\mingw64.exe ) and install OF dependencies:

cd your_oF_directory/scripts/msys2
./ --noconfirm

next, compile oF libraries:

cd your_oF_directory/libs/openFrameworksCompiled/project

You can speed-up compilation using parallel build make -j4 or the number of cores you want it to use

Checking OF installation by running examples

Compiling and running an OF example in the best way to check if you're ready for it.

To compile an example (for example the 3DPrimitivesExample), run :

cd your_oF_directory/examples/3d/3DPrimitivesExample

At this point, make run should execute the newly built example.

However, it wil not execute by double-clicking on its icon; lots of "missing DLL" warnings shall appear. To enable to double-click on the exe file to run it, you need to copy the required DLLs file in the application folder. That is easily done with the make copy_dlls command.

Setting up an IDE

Several IDE can be used with MSYS2. QT Creator used to be OF recommended choice. However, VS Code has gain popularity and is now used by many OF enthusiasts.

If you use a different IDE and would like to share your knowledge in setting it up for OF development, do not hesitate to contribute to this page.

VS Code

You can find more information in the corresponding setup guide:

QT Creator

You can find more information in the corresponding setup guide:

As mention earlier, pay attention to the installation folder of MSYS2 (which must be C:\msys64).


Every example has a Makefile you can configure using the files config.make and addons.make.

config.make: This file has options to add search paths, libraries, etc., the syntax is the usual syntax in makefiles, there's help comments inside the file.

addons.make: if you want to use an addon which is inside the addons folder, just add its name in a new line in this file.

FAQ / Common problems

  • "How to set up the PATH variable ?"

Unless you know exactly what you are doing, YOU SHOULD NOT* set the PATH variable. It is the main cause of OF application crashes because of dll incompatibilities. This is because, when the DLL is not found in the same folder as the application executable, the OF application looks for it in the PATH. It may find DLL with the right name but with a different MSYS2 flavor (MINGW32 vs MINGW64) or from a non-MSYS2 location (for example a separate OpenSSL installation).

Use the make copy_dlls command to make sur that the MSYS2 DLLs are copied next to the executable. This will also ease the installation of the application on a different computer....

You may be tempted to set MSYS2 in the path to enable the automatic detection of compiler installation by IDE software. It's an easy way to setup up your IDE. However, there may also be some settings in the IDE to configure where to find the programs. That gives you better control. As in the previous point, relying on the PATH variable to find the programs may result in unexpected behaviours (for example, using Windows C:\Windows\System32\find.exe instead of MSYS C:\msys64\usr\bin\find.exe)

It may be interesting to write a wrapper batch file to lauch your IDE where you set the PATH to use. This way you do not pollute your PATH system-wide.

  • "Are UCRT64, CLANG64 and others MSYS2 flavors supported ?"

Only MINGW64 is only supported. OF has been successfully compiled with UCRT64 and CLANG64. However, it is something reserved for advanced users as it requires recompiling Apothecary modules,...

  • "I have a TLSv1_1_client_method missing error" when I double-click the exe ?"

The executable looks for ssleay32.dll and libeay32.dll and it first finds a version that doesn't support TLS v1.1. Often it happens with Intel iCls software. The solution is to move the your_msys2_directory\mingw64\bin path before the conflicting path. If the conflicting path is in the system PATH and you do not have administrative privileges, copy/link ssleay32.dll and libeay32.dll from your_msys2_directory\mingw64\bin to the executable folder.

  • "I'm on a corporate network and I cannot install OF dependencies, update MSYS2..."

This is more an MSYS2 problem than an OF problem... Ask your system adminsitrator for help as the reasons are multiple (proxy,certificates,...)

You may need to set HTTP_PROXY and HTTPS_PROXY environment variables.

From a DOS/CMD prompt :
set http_proxy=http://your_proxy:your_port
set http_proxy=http://username:password@your_proxy:your_port
set https_proxy=https://your_proxy:your_port
set https_proxy=https://username:password@your_proxy:your_port

Don't forget to escape special characters in your password...

many thanks!! OFteam