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Building SuperTux

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SuperTux 0.3.x: This text describes features that can be found in SuperTux 0.3.0 or later

This article contains content that is outdated. It might describe an obsolete concept or a concept that was implemented in a different way.

Outdated: SVN version uses cmake/make instead of autoconf/jam. See INSTALL.

Some notes for windows users

Supertux development mainly happens on Linux. The source code is written in a portable manner but the tools and development environment for windows isn't there. However, you should be able to get the game built with the help of MSYS and MinGW. Find more detailed instructions at Building on Windows.

You can also cross-compile the game with MinGW or M Cross Environment.

Prebuilt binaries can be found at User:Rgcjonas

Mac OS X

Ravu al Hemio has written a guide for Mac OS X Tiger users on building SuperTux <=0.3.1.

x2on writes a guide for Mac OS X Snow Leopard users on building SuperTux >=0.3.2 SVN.

A new guide for building SuperTux >= 0.3.3 Git is here available


You will need the following tools and libraries to build SuperTux on your system:

  • gcc compiler &co (gcc, g++, binutils, glibc)
  • gettext
  • autoconf
  • cmake
  • SDL (*)
  • SDL-image (*)
  • PhysFS (*)
  • Ogg/Vorbis (*)
  • OpenGL (*)
  • OpenAL (*)
  • libcurl (*) (optional)
  • libboost (*) (SVN only)
  • libglew (*) (SVN only)

You should make sure that you also have development headers and libraries installed for the tools marked with (*).

Most distributions offer separate developer versions for these libraries.


Debian users should run

apt-get install subversion autoconf automake jam g++ 
apt-get install libsdl1.2-dev libsdl-image1.2-dev libphysfs-dev libvorbis-dev libogg-dev libopenal-dev

and (if you want the Add-on Manager)

apt-get install libcurl3-dev

to install them.


 Tested on Ubuntu 14.04 (Trusty Tahr), but probably the process works in other versions of system.
 The way is very simple, but I have detailed here to facilitate the process. 
 Follow the steps below:

First of all, set the "sources" of Ubuntu:

Open the Software and Updates and Ubuntu Software tab select Main Server in the Download from; in the Other Software tab check the two Independent boxes. Click Close and then Reload. Wait for the update process to finish.

1. Open the Terminal and use the "sudo apt-get build-dep supertux" command and after use "s" to confirm;

2. Use the following commands, one after the other, and wait to download them:

  sudo apt-get install libsdl2-2.0-0
  sudo apt-get install libsdl2-dev
  sudo apt-get install libsdl2-image-2.0-0
  sudo apt-get install libsdl2-image-dev

3. Using Mozilla Firefox or the browser you prefer, download this file:

  libiconv 1.12

...and unzip it in the Home folder. In Terminal, use the following commands:

  cd /home/user/libiconv-1.12 (replace the user name of your account user)
  ./configure --prefix=/usr
  sudo make
  sudo make install

4. Open this link and click on "Download .zip" After downloading, unzip the downloaded file to the Home folder and rename it to "supertux" (without quotes).

5. In Terminal, use these commands:

  cd/home/user/supertux (replace the user name of your account User)
  mkdir build
  cd build
  cmake -DDEBUG=ON ..
  sudo make (this is a long process)
  sudo make install

Just go in supertux folder you will find the game compiled and ready to run.


Gentoo users should run

emerge -avn subversion ftjam media-libs/openal physfs libsdl sdl-image libvorbis libogg

and (if you want the Add-on Manager)

emerge -avn curl


For Fedora, use yum and don't forget the development packages!

yum install jam SDL SDL-devel SDL_image SDL_image-devel physfs physfs-devel openal openal-devel

(assuming gcc, gettext and autoconf are already installed)

Source Code from release ≤ 0.3.1

Configuring the source

Before compiling the source code you have to configure it so that it gets adapted to your machine. Use the following commands:

./configure --enable-debug

configure checks if all prerequisites are met.

Compiling the source

You can compile the source code from commandline with the help of jam. Simply type


and the game should build. You should Contact us in case of errors or problems.

Source Code from release ≥ 0.3.1 and from SVN

Getting the source from SVN

The first thing to get started with supertux is getting the latest development resources from the subversion repository. How to do this is described here at Download/Subversion.

Configuring and Compiling

SuperTux uses CMake to generate a set of Makefiles for the build process. To generate these Makefiles and build SuperTux, perform the following steps which are also described in INSTALL which comes in the source archive.

  1. `cd' to the directory where you unpacked the SuperTux source archive, i.e. to the directory containing `src' and `data'.
  2. Create and change to a new, empty build directory by running `mkdir build', `cd build'.
  3. Run `cmake -DDEBUG=ON ..' to create the Makefiles needed to build SuperTux with debug options. If you are missing any libraries needed to build SuperTux, install those first, then try running CMake again.
  4. Type `make' to start the build process.
  5. SuperTux does not need to be installed on the system, you can run it from its own directory.

Setting up IDEs

This section is under construction. IDEs that should be able to handle supertux include:

Kdevelop 4

You can feed Kdevelop with the CMakeLists.txt. (Project -> Open/Import Project)

Eclipse with CDT

  • create a build directory outside of the supertux checkout dir.

Example: Your supertux source is located in ~/supertux. You would normally create your build directory ~/supertux/build but eclipse seems to fail in that case. So you create ~/supertux-build.

  • run cmake inside that build directory using the eclipse generator:
   cmake -G"Eclipse CDT4 - Unix Makefiles" /path/to/source
  • now open eclipse and select File -> import -> general -> existing project into workspace
  • Select your build directory as root directory and click finish.

Compiling the editor


To compile the editor you should make sure that you have some additional dependencies available:

  • An already compiled and working svn version of supertux
  • mono or newer
  • gtk-sharp 2.8


Debian users can run the following command to do this:

apt-get install libgtk2.0-cil libglade2.0-cil libmono-system-runtime2.0-cil mono-gmcs make debhelper pkg-config

If you get an error like

make: gmcs: command not found

when the editor is compiling, do this as root:

ln -s /usr/bin/gmcs2 /usr/bin/gmcs


Gentoo users can use this command:

emerge -avn ">=dev-lang/mono-" ">=dev-dotnet/gtk-sharp-2.8.0" ">=dev-dotnet/glade-sharp-2.8.0"

Unmask any packages that might be needed on your arch (none needed on either x86 or amd64).


Just install mono and gtk-sharp2 using yum, and don't forget to install gtk-sharp2-devel (gtk-sharp2-2.10.0-3.fc6 and mono-core- worked fine):

yum install mono gtk-sharp2 gtk-sharp2-devel

Download the source for the editor into /some/directory/supertux-sharp. For pkgconfig, you need to include /usr in the path, so for bash:



If you have to use the generic installer from the web, be warned that neither the stable(1.1.13) or current(1.1.15_2) have the correct version for gtk-sharp. The recommended way to resolve this is:

1. Install mono using an all-in-one generic installer

The all-in-one installer will try to adjust your environment through the .bashrc file. This is not a proper system-wide change, so (in Slackware at least) modify these scripts and place them in /etc/profile.d


setenv PKG_CONFIG_PATH {$PKG_CONFIG_PATH}:/path/to/mono/lib/pkgconfig
setenv MANPATH ${MANPATH}:/path/to/mono/share/man
setenv PATH ${PATH}:/path/to/mono/bin

export PKG_CONFIG_PATH="$PKG_CONFIG_PATH:/path/to/mono/lib/pkgconfig"
export MANPATH="$MANPATH:/path/to/mono/share/man"
export PATH="$PATH:/path/to/mono/bin"

Also, add /path/to/mono/lib in /etc/ You may have to login again after these changes so they can take affect.

2. Download the source of gtk-sharp at

3. Compile and install gtk-sharp using "./configure --prefix=/path/to/mono"

4. Verify that the new version is correct by running "pkg-config --modversion gtk-sharp-2.0" (May need to login again for this)


You can compile the editor from commandline with jam. Simply type


and the editor will be built. You can then start the editor with

mono supertux-editor.exe

There are also complete monodevelop project files for the editor in the svn. (TODO write about the hacks needed to actually compile the source in monodevelop).

You might want to read the Editor FAQ at this point.


In my installation, the editor starts with the following output to the console:

INFO:  Using configfile: /home/myself/.config/supertux-editor/settings.xml
INFO:  Supertux is run as: /usr/local/bin/supertux/supertux
INFO:  Data files are in: /usr/local/bin/supertux/data/

On the first run, these paths were not correctly set, so the editor stopped with an error. The editor offers to set the paths interactively, but that didn't work for me. Instead edit the config file settings.xml itself:


Yours will probably look differently, and you have to fill in your appropriate paths. Note that LastDirectoryName must exist, otherwise you will run into errors again. Just use the path to data, that should be ok. Do not add any white space between the paths and the tags!