Building » Building the DIPlib documentation

The documentation is built using dox++, which requires Python 3 and a set of packages. It also requires a LaTeX installation to render the equations. Here we show how to install dependencies on Ubuntu Linux and macOS. For other Linux distributions the instructions are similar. We have not yet tried building the documentation on Windows, if you manage to get that done, please write down some instructions below.

Installing the dependencies

Python 3 can be installed on Ubuntu with

sudo apt install python3

and on macOS with

brew install python3 python3-pip

We have built the documentation with Python 3.6 and 3.9, it is unknown if versions older than 3.6 will work.

Once Python is installed, install the required packages:

pip3 install clang jinja2 markdown markdown-headdown mdx_math_svg Pygments

Finally, install LaTeX. Ubuntu has a LaTeX package, but we recommend TeX Live. There is a version of TeX Live specifically packaged for macOS, but that just adds some macOS-specific GUI tools; it is perfectly fine to use the Unix installation instructions on macOS.

First, download install-tl-unx.tar.gz, for example to ~/tmp/. Extract its contents (tar xzf install-tl-unx.tar.gz), then navigate into the newly created directory (cd install-tl-*) and run the installer program (./install-tl) (under Linux you might have to run this as sudo if you want to install to the default location). Here you can set up destination directories, etc. (there’s a graphical version of the installation program, and a text version, but they both should allow the same options). To speed up installation, turn off the options to “install font/macro doc tree” and “install font/macro source tree”. Neither are needed, and together take up nearly half the downloaded bytes. Do turn on the option “create symlinks in standard directories”, which is off by default. If you don’t want to install the “full scheme” (which installs all packages), you might have to separately install a few of the packages needed by the tool that renders equations using LaTeX:

tlmgr install standalone preview ucs xkeyval currfile filehook newtx fontaxes xstring

Installing dox++

This tool can be installed anywhere. For the purposes of these instructions, we will put it into /opt/, but you can put it in your home directory as well. All that is needed is cloning the repository:

cd /opt
git clone

This will create the directory /opt/doxpp/, containing the two executables dox++parse and dox++html. We will need to tell CMake where to find these tools.

Configuring CMake

To set up CMake to build the documentation, we need to tell it where the dox++ programs are. From your DIPlib build directory,

cmake . -DDOXPP_PARSE_EXECUTABLE=/opt/doxpp/dox++parse -DDOXPP_HTML_EXECUTABLE=/opt/doxpp/dox++html

(obviously substitute your dox++ path where it says /opt/doxpp).

CMake should now show, in its configuration report, the line:

Documentation installed to /usr/local/share/doc/DIPlib

(or something similar, depending on the chosen installation path.)

Building the documentation

Once everything is set up, the documentation is build with

make apidoc

from the DIPlib build directory.

The documentation will appear in a html/ subdirectory of the directory specified in the configuration report.

The first time you build the documentation, it will take quite some time to render all the equations. These will be cached, such that subsequent builds of the documentation are faster.

If there are errors produced during the rendering of the equations, a long LaTeX output will be shown. This output should point out which LaTeX package is missing. If you used TeX Live to install LaTeX, use its package manager to install the missing package and try building again:

tlmgr install <package name>

Other errors are not fatal. Some errors even are irrelevant because they relate to non-documented members. If Clang produces an error while parsing a header file, the contents of that header file will not make it into the documentation.

Building the official documentation

The official documentation at is uploaded to the diplib-docs GitHub repository. The /usr/local/share/doc/DIPlib/html output directory of the dox++ tool is the git repository. Simply push a new build to update the website.

It is important that the official documentation is complete. This means that all modules and extras must be included. For these to be included, their headers must be parseable by Clang. This again requires that their dependencies be present. Therefore, it is necessary to have MATLAB, OpenCV and Vigra installed, and the “include directories” option in the doc/ file adjusted so that Clang runs through all header files without error.