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Build Instructions

The following are instructions for compiling Jacktrip from source. Compiling from source is the best way to keep up with the latest changes, both stable and experimental. For quicker ways to install Jacktrip, go to in the root directory of the project.


  • C++ compiler
  • Qt5


  • JACK (preferred) or RtAudio (not fully functional)
  • help2man for generating the manpage


dnf install qt5-qtbase-devel qt5-qtnetworkauth-devel qt5-qtquickcontrols2-devel qt5-qtsvg-devel
dnf groupinstall "C Development Tools and Libraries"
dnf groupinstall "Development Tools"
dnf install "pkgconfig(jack)" alsa-lib-devel git help2man
dnf install qjackctl

Clone the git repo with submodules and run ./build install in the project directory or use QtCreator to compile.

Ubuntu and Debian/Raspbian

apt install --no-install-recommends build-essential qt5-default autoconf automake libtool make libjack-jackd2-dev git help2man
apt install qjackctl
apt install librtaudio-dev # if building with RtAudio

Clone the git repo with submodules and run ./build install in the project directory or use QtCreator to compile.

Building and Installation instructions

For other Linux distributions, install the dependencies listed above. Clone the git repo and run ./build install (or ./build to skip installation) in the project directory, or use QtCreator to compile.

To clone the repo in the Terminal:

$ git clone --recurse-submodules
Note that we need --recurse-submodules to also get the submodules!

Next, navigate to the cloned repository:

$ cd jacktrip

JackTrip provides a build script designed to simplify the build process and providing a number of options. To list them, run:

$ ./build -h
This should print:
 ./build [noclean nojack rtaudio nogui static install [-config static]]

 noclean - do not run "make clean" first
 nojack - build without jack
 rtaudio - build with rtaudio
 nogui - build without the gui
 static - build with static libraries
 weakjack - build with weak linking of jack libraries
 install - install jacktrip in system location (uses sudo)

To just compile JackTrip using the build script, run:

$ ./build
$ cd builddir
$ ls

You should see a jacktrip in this folder.

To compile and install using the build script, run:

$ ./build install
# enter your password when prompted

If the build script doesn't work, try running qmake directly. You'd need to have qmake in your $PATH. Then you can build with:

$ mkdir builddir
$ cd builddir
$ qmake ../
$ make release
$ sudo make release-install # to install JackTrip system-wide

You can pass configuration options to qmake with -config <option>, e.g. qmake -config nogui ../ Relevant options include:

  • -config rtaudio - build with rtaudio support
  • -config nogui - build without the GUI
  • -config static - build with static libraries
  • -config weakjack - build using weak linking of jack
  • -config nojack - build without jack support

To build using QtCreator:

  • Open using QtCreator
  • Choose a correctly configured Kit


If you have installed jacktrip, from anywhere in the Terminal, type:

$ jacktrip -v

If you have compiled from source without installing, in the /builddir directory type:

$ ./jacktrip -v

If you see something like this, you have successfully installed JackTrip:

JackTrip VERSION: 1.x.x
Copyright (c) 2008-2020 Juan-Pablo Caceres, Chris Chafe.
SoundWIRE group at CCRMA, Stanford University

Running Two Versions of JackTrip in Parallel

One level above the project directory of your current JackTrip installation, clone the JackTrip repository again in another directory (e.g. jacktrip-1.x.x):

$ git clone --recurse-submodules jacktrip-1.x.x

You now have two separate folders side by side: the new version in the jacktrip-1.x.x folder and the original one in the jacktrip folder. To build the new version without installing it:

$ cd jacktrip-1.x.x
$ ./build

To experiment with the new version of JackTrip, enter builddir/build directory and check the JackTrip version:

$ cd builddir
$ ./jacktrip -v

You can use JackTrip from this directory, e.g.:

$ ./jacktrip -C serveraddress

You can switch back and forth between different JackTrip versions by running them in their respective build directories.

Hint: If you lose track of where you are, this command will show your present working directory:

$ pwd

The new version's directory structure might look like this: jacktrip-1.x.x/builddir and the old version jacktrip/builddir.