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If you want to hack on the GIMP project, it will make your life easier
to have the following packages (or newer versions) installed:
* GNU autoconf 2.54
* GNU automake 1.9 (automake 1.10 should also work)
* GNU libtool 1.5
Fine GNU mirrors are listed at
Beta software can be found at
* pkg-config 0.16.0 (or preferably a newer version)
* gtkdocize
* xsltproc
These are only the additional requirements if you want to compile from
the git repository. The file INSTALL lists the various libraries we
depend on.
If you are accessing gimp via git, then you will need to take several
steps to get it to compile. You can do all these steps at once by
gimp/trunk$ ./
Basically this does the following for you:
gimp/trunk$ aclocal-1.9; libtoolize; automake-1.9 -a;
gimp/trunk$ autoconf; intltoolize --automake
The above commands create the "configure" script. Now you can run the
configure script in gimp/trunk to create all the Makefiles.
Before running or configure, make sure you have libtool in
your path. Also make sure glib-2.0.m4 glib-gettext.m4, gtk-2.0.m4,
pkg.m4 and intltool.m4 are either installed in the same
$prefix/share/aclocal relative to your automake/aclocal installation
or call as follows:
$ ACLOCAL_FLAGS="-I $prefix/share/aclocal" ./
Note that runs configure for you. If you wish to pass
options like --prefix=/usr to configure you can give those options to and they will be passed on to configure.
If AUTOGEN_CONFIGURE_ARGS is set, these options will also be passed to
the configure script. If for example you want to enable the build of
the GIMP API reference manuals, you can set AUTOGEN_CONFIGURE_ARGS to
"--enable-gtk-doc". Please note that you will then need a recent
version of gtk-doc as well as a working setup for handling DocBook/XML.
If you do not have a recent version of gtk-doc, you can pass the
option "--disable-gtk-doc" to This will completely
disable the support for gtk-doc so you will not be able to generate
the API documentation.
GIMP is available from GNOME Git. You can use the following commands
to get GIMP from the the git server:
$ git clone git://
You can read more on using GNOME's git service at these URLs:
You will also need relatively new stable releases of glib, pango, atk,
gtk+, cairo, gtkhtml2, etc. for building GIMP, which you can get as a
part of recent Linux distribution releases.
The best way to submit patches is to publish your git repository and
ask developers to git-fetch from you.
For bug fixes where the patch is small you can file a bug report at and attach your patch to it as a plain text
file, not compressed. If your patch is reasonably small you can submit
it to the mailing list. You can
create the patch file with git-format-patch
If the patch needs to be discussed, you should also consider using the
mailing list instead of Bugzilla because bug reports tend to be hard
to read if they contain too many comments. For the code, please try to
follow the guidelines given in Hackordnung, below.
Auto-generated Files
Please notice that some files in the source are generated from other
sources. All those files have a short notice about being generated
somewhere at the top. Among them are the files ending in pdb.[ch] in
the libgimp directory and the files ending in cmds.c in the app/pdb
subdirectory. Those are generated from the respective .pdb files in
We encourage you to follow the GIMP coding style throughout the GIMP
project. For the core components (application and libs) this coding
style is enforced. The GIMP coding style is defined as follows:
* There's a single space between the function name and the opening
* Function names are lowercase, words separated by underscores.
* Macros and enums are all uppercase, words seperated by
* Types are all words capitalized, no separators between words.
* All functions in header files need to be prototyped.
* Indentation rules are GNU coding style, in particular:
- 2 characters indentation level
- Do not use tabs (of course your editor can accept the TAB key
as a command, typically to indent the current line properly
or to add spaces at the cursor until the next multiple of 8
columns, but it should not put TAB characters in the file).
- When editing files that still have TABs in them, make sure your
editor interprets the TABs correctly, that is, has tab stops
at 8 column intervals.
- Opening braces are on a new line and indented one level.
- Function header have the return type on one line, the name
starting in the first column of the following line. All
parameters are prototyped and there's a new line for each.
Try to make use of GLib's object system as much as possible. Do not
create wrappers around functions of parent classes. If you end up
duplicating code, try to create a common parent class and implement
the common methods there.
Don't include headers in headers except where unavoidable (e.g. for
deriving objects). Opaque typedefs go to app/base/base-types.h,
app/core/core-types.h etc. See devel-docs/includes.txt for a
detailed description of the include policy.
Don't use the GTK wrappers around the GLib object and signal system.
One goal of GIMP development is to make the GIMP code more readable
and understandable. Please help us to achieve this goal by cleaning up
the present code and make sure that all new code follows the coding