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Guillaume Girou edited this page · 42 revisions


First, you’ll need to get the sources. Everything below assumes you’ll have checked out the FreeRDP sources and you’re now in the source dir:

git clone git://
cd FreeRDP

Linux Specifics

Install the suggested base dependencies:

debian based

sudo apt-get install build-essential git-core cmake xsltproc libssl-dev libx11-dev libxext-dev libxinerama-dev \
  libxcursor-dev libxdamage-dev libxv-dev libxkbfile-dev libasound2-dev libcups2-dev libxml2 libxml2-dev \
  libxrandr-dev libgstreamer0.10-dev libgstreamer-plugins-base0.10-dev libxi-dev libgstreamer-plugins-base1.0-dev

Building 1.0.1 or master requires:

sudo apt-get install libavutil-dev libavcodec-dev

rhel based

sudo yum install gcc cmake openssl-devel libX11-devel libXext-devel libXinerama-devel libXcursor-devel \
  libXi-devel libXdamage-devel libXv-devel libxkbfile-devel alsa-lib-devel cups-devel ffmpeg-devel glib2-devel

Optionally, you can install the following dependencies:

debian based

sudo apt-get install libcunit1-dev libdirectfb-dev xmlto doxygen libxtst-dev

where cunit is for the unit tests, directfb is for dfreerdp, xmlto is for man pages, and doxygen for API documentation.

Generate makefiles:


If you are using Eclipse, you can also generate Eclipse project files:

cmake -G "Eclipse CDT4 - Unix Makefiles" -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Debug -DWITH_SSE2=ON .

See Build Options for a list of options.




sudo make install

Now create /etc/ and add the following line to it:


For a 64-bit rhel based OS add:

Depending on your OS/distribution, you may also need to add this line:


Run ldconfig. You should now have xfreerdp installed in /usr/local/bin:

awake@envy:~$ which xfreerdp

Plugins are installed in /usr/local/lib/freerdp:

awake@envy:/usr/local/lib/freerdp$ ls

keymaps are installed in /usr/local/share/freerdp:

awake@envy:/usr/local/share/freerdp$ ls keymaps/
aliases  ataritt       empty  fujitsu  ibm        macosx    sony  xfree86
amiga    digital_vndr  evdev  hp       macintosh  sgi_vndr  sun   xfree98

After launching FreeRDP at least once, ~/.freerdp will be created to store known hosts:

awake@envy:~/.freerdp$ ls
cacert  known_hosts

CA certificates can be added to ~/.freerdp/cacert for additional trusted CAs.


To uninstall by deleting all created files run:

sudo xargs rm < install_manifest.txt

Mac OS X Specifics

Using a package manager

If you’re using MacPorts then just install FreeRDP port:

sudo port install FreeRDP

FreeRDP is now available as a homebrew recipe.

brew tap homebrew/x11
brew install freerdp
sudo brew link freerdp

Compiling from sources

You’ll need cmake in order to build sourc.
Install it if you don’t have it already then to make a universal binary build, use:

cmake -D "CMAKE_OSX_ARCHITECTURES:STRING=i386;x86_64" . && make

To make a 64-bit only binary:

cmake -D "CMAKE_OSX_ARCHITECTURES:STRING=x86_64" . && make

If you are interested in trying out multimedia redirection on a Mac, use the following steps:

Install ffmpeg, using MacPorts:

sudo port install ffmpeg-devel

or compiling it from sources by following instructions at – tested on Mountain Lion.

If attempting to compile for media redirection on mac, and enabling ffmpeg using cmake, make sure ffmpeg configure is run with —arch=x86_64. For example, the following is a working configuration step before running make for ffmpeg:

./configure --enable-runtime-cpudetect --enable-libxvid --arch=x86_64 --disable-stripping --enable-gpl \
  --enable-nonfree --cc=clang --extra-cflags="-I/sw64/include -m64" --extra-ldflags=-m64 --enable-libmp3lame \
  --enable-libfaac --enable-shared --enable-static

Use the following steps for compiling and installing Pulseaudio:

sudo port install json-c gettext intltool speex libsndfile
sudo ./configure --with-udev-rules-dir=/usr/local/lib/udev/rules.d \
  --with-mac-sysroot=/Applications/ \
sudo make install

Compiling with Visual C++ 2010 Express
See this page and 2012 32/64 bit builds See this page

Cross-Compilation using Mingw-w64

FreeRDP can be compiled for Windows (32/64 Bit) on a Linux system using the Mingw cross-compilers. The following instruction was tested with Mingw-w64 2.0 and gcc-4.7 on Scientific Linux 6.1 (x64) but should work relatively independent of the Mingw/gcc version.

1. Install the Mingw-cross compilers (most Linux distros offer binary packages for Mingw in their repos). On older distros you may need to compile the latest version of Mingw from source. If you want to create 32 Bit binaries only, then Mingw32 is sufficient, otherwise you should install Mingw-w64.

2. Download the latest version of openssl (, compile it using the Mingw cross-compilers and install it. Instructions how to do this can be found on

3. Download FreeRDP and unpack the source archive. Create a subdirectory in the FreeRDP source tree called “mingw_build” where FreeRDP will be build. Open a terminal and goto this directory. Enter the command

cmake -DCMAKE_SYSTEM_NAME="Windows" \
      -DCMAKE_C_COMPILER="/opt/mingw64/bin/x86_64-w64-mingw32-gcc" \
      -DCMAKE_RC_COMPILER="/opt/mingw64/bin/x86_64-w64-mingw32-windres" \
      -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX="/opt/mingw64" \
      -DCMAKE_C_FLAGS="-DFREERDP_EXPORTS -Dsprintf_s=snprintf" \
      -DCMAKE_EXE_LINKER_FLAGS="-L/opt/mingw64/lib" \
      -DWITH_SSE2=OFF \
      -DOPENSSL_INCLUDE_DIR="/opt/mingw64/include" \
      -DLIB_EAY="/opt/mingw64/lib/libcrypto.a" \
      -DSSL_EAY="/opt/mingw64/lib/libssl.a" \

This will configure FreeRDP for cross-compilation. Note that you need to adjust the paths according to your installation of Mingw and OpenSSL. Using the command above the wfreerdp.exe binary will be statically linked and can be executed on any Windows machine.

Note: You need a recent version of cmake (I used 2.8.7) as the logic in the FindOpenSSL cmake makro is broken (for cross-compilation) in older versions.

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