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isk-daemon is an open source database server capable of adding content-based (visual) image searching to any image related website or software.

This technology allows users of any image-related website or software to sketch on a widget which image they want to find and have the website reply to them the most similar images or simply request for more similar photos at each image detail page.

A desktop version of this technology is available as the open-source imgSeek project.

Key features

  • Query for images similar to one already indexed by the database, returning a similarity degree for the images on database that most resemble the target query image;
  • Query for images similar to one described by its signature. A client-side widget may generate such signature from what a user sketched and submit it to the daemon;
  • Network interface for easy integration with other web or desktop applications: XML-RPC, SOAP;
  • Fast indexing of images one-by-one or in batch;
  • Associate keywords to images and perform image-similarity queries filtering by keywords;
  • Quickly remove images from database one-by-one or in batch;
  • Built-in web-based admin interface with statistics and ad-hoc maintenance commands/API testing;
  • Optimized image processing code (implemented in C++).

Install instructions

Here is a quick guide to build from a cloned git repo. You may want to sudo all these commands if you have permission errors. I assume you know how to build from source and have all build tools (most are installed on the next steps) and libraries installed for your system.

##Ubuntu Quick Start

This one is tested with Ubuntu 14.12

  1. Install prerequisited if they're not on your system already:

    apt-get install swig ImageMagick libmagick++-dev python-dev

  2. cd to ./src and run: python install

##MacOS Quick Start

  1. Go to and install Homebrew

  2. Install swig: brew install swig

  3. Install ImageMagick: brew install ImageMagick

  4. Install pkg-config: brew install pkg-config

  5. Cd to ./iskdaemon/src/ and run python install

Alternatively, you can try it with macports.


imgSeek and isk-daemon portions copyright Ricardo Niederberger Cabral (ricardo.cabral at

Image loading code is credited to "ImageMagick Studio LLC" and library linkage adheres to statements on ImageMagick-License.txt

Support or Donate

Help on improving this software is needed, feel free to submit patches to either the documentation or code. Thanks!

Money donations are also welcome:

Flattr this git repo


Donate using PayPal


isk-daemon is an open source standalone server and library capable of adding content-based (visual) image searching to any image related website or software.






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