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mwoehlke-kitware and kevinkreiser committed 2ac1fa0 Jul 10, 2020
* Remove "leaked" dependence on robin-hood-hashing

Modify thor::CostMatrix to make the target map an opaque type. This
allows us to entirely encapsulate use of RHH in the implementation,
avoiding what otherwise appears to be the only place where use of RHH
leaked into the public interface. In particular, this means that
consumers no longer need to be able to include the RHH headers. (Which
is very fortunate, as we weren't installing them!)

* Make idtable.h explicitly private

Move idtable.h into src/ so that it is explicitly a private header.
Also, remove its inclusion from, which was not
actually using it. This "fixes" the other potential leak of
robin-hood-hashing. (Note also the previous commit.)

Co-authored-by: Kevin Kreiser <>


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Jan 25, 2018

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Valhalla 3.0 is now available! This release (current master) makes changes to the Valhalla graph tile format. These tile changes are designed to make the tile data more efficient and flexible. However, these changes make Valhalla 3.0 incompatible with data from Valhalla 2.x. Also, any data built using Valhalla 3.0 will not be usable with Valhalla 2.x. See the CHANGELOG to get a brief description of the updates.

Valhalla is an open source routing engine and accompanying libraries for use with OpenStreetMap data. Valhalla also includes tools like time+distance matrix computation, isochrones, elevation sampling, map matching and tour optimization (Travelling Salesman).

Build Status

Linux/MacOs Windows Code Coverage
Circle CI Build Status codecov


Valhalla, and all of the projects under the Valhalla organization, use the MIT License. Avatar/logo by Jordan


There are several key features that we hope can differentiate the Valhalla project from other routing and network analysis engines. They are:

  • Open source software, on open source data with a very liberal license. Should allow for transparency in development, encourage contribution and community input, and foster use in other projects.
  • Tiled hierarchical data structure. Should allow users to have a small memory footprint on memory constrained devices, enable offline routing, provide a means for regional extracts and partial updates.
  • Dynamic, runtime costing of edges and vertices within the graph via a plugin architecture. Should allow for customization and alternate route generation.
  • C++ based API. Should allow for cross compilation of the various pieces to enable routing on offline portable devices.
  • A plugin based narrative and manoeuvre generation architecture. Should allow for generation that is customized either to the administrative area or to the target locale.
  • Multi-modal and time-based routes. Should allow for mixing auto, pedestrian, bike and public transportation in the same route or setting a time by which one must arrive at a location.


The Valhalla organization is comprised of several library modules each responsible for a different function. The layout of the various modules is as follows:

  • Midgard - Basic geographic and geometric algorithms for use in the various other projects.
  • Baldr - The base data structures for accessing and caching tiled route data.
  • Sif - Library used in costing of graph nodes and edges. This can be used as input to loki and thor.
  • Skadi - Library and service for accessing elevation data. This can be used as input to mjolnir or as a standalone service.
  • Mjolnir - Tools for turning open data into Valhalla graph tiles.
  • Loki - Library used to search graph tiles and correlate input locations to an entity within a tile. This correlated entity (edge or vertex) can be used as input to thor.
  • Meili - Library used to for map-matching.
  • Thor - Library used to generate a path through the graph tile hierarchy. This path and attribution along the path can be used as input to odin.
  • Odin - Library used to generate manoeuvres and narrative based on a path. This set of directions information can be used as input to tyr.
  • Tyr - Service used to handle http requests for a route communicating with all of the other valhalla APIs. The service will format output from odin and support json (and eventually protocol buffer) output.
  • Tools - A set command line tools that exercise bits of functionality from the library components above and provide the basis for quality testing and performance benchmarking.
  • Demos - A set of demos which allows interacting with the service and APIs.


Documentation is stored in the docs/ folder in this GitHub repository. It can be viewed at

Get Valhalla from Personal Package Archive (PPA)

If you are running Ubuntu (trusty or xenial) Valhalla can be installed quickly and easily via PPA. Try the following:

# grab all of the valhalla software from ppa
sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:valhalla-core/valhalla
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install -y valhalla-bin

Building from Source

Valhalla uses CMake as build system. When compiling with gcc (GNU Compiler Collection), version 5 or newer is supported.

To install on a Debian or Ubuntu system you need to install its dependencies with:

sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:valhalla-core/valhalla
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install -y cmake make libtool pkg-config g++ gcc curl jq lcov protobuf-compiler vim-common locales libboost-all-dev libcurl4-openssl-dev zlib1g-dev liblz4-dev libprime-server-dev libprotobuf-dev prime-server-bin
#if you plan to compile with data building support, see below for more info
sudo apt-get install -y libgeos-dev libgeos++-dev libluajit-5.1-dev libspatialite-dev libsqlite3-dev wget sqlite3 spatialite-bin
source /etc/lsb-release
if [[ $(python -c "print int($DISTRIB_RELEASE > 15)") > 0 ]]; then sudo apt-get install -y libsqlite3-mod-spatialite; fi
#if you plan to compile with python bindings, see below for more info
sudo apt-get install -y python-all-dev
#if you plan to compile with node bindings
curl -o- | bash #follow instructions in output to use nvm without starting a new bash session
nvm install 10
nvm use 10

For instructions on installing Valhalla on Ubuntu 18.04.x see this script.

To install on macOS, you need to install its dependencies with Homebrew:

# install dependencies (automake & czmq are required by prime_server)
brew install automake cmake libtool protobuf-c boost-python libspatialite pkg-config sqlite3 jq curl wget czmq lz4 node@10 npm spatialite-tools unzip luajit
curl -o- | bash
nvm use 10 # must use node 8.11.1 and up because of N-API
npm install --ignore-scripts
# following packages are needed for running Linux compatible scripts
brew install bash coreutils binutils
# Update your PATH env variable to include /usr/local/opt/binutils/bin:/usr/local/opt/coreutils/libexec/gnubin

Now, clone the Valhalla repository

git clone --recurse-submodules
# if you wanted to enable node bindings
npm install --ignore-scripts

Then, build prime_server.

After getting the dependencies install it with:

mkdir build
cd build
cmake .. -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Release
make -j$(nproc) # for macos, use: make -j$(sysctl -n hw.physicalcpu)
sudo make install

Important build options include:

Option Behavior
-DENABLE_DATA_TOOLS (On/Off) Build the data preprocessing tools
-DENABLE_PYTHON_BINDINGS (On/Off) Build the python bindings
-DENABLE_SERVICES (On / Off) Build the HTTP service
-DBUILD_SHARED_LIBS (On / Off) Build static or shared libraries
-DENABLE_NODE_BINDINGS (ON / OFF) Build the node bindings (defaults to on)
-DENABLE_COMPILER_WARNINGS (ON / OFF) Build with common compiler warnings (defaults to off)
-DENABLE_WERROR (ON / OFF) Treat compiler warnings as errors (defaults to off). Requires -DENABLE_COMPILER_WARNINGS=ON to take effect.
-DENABLE_BENCHMARKS (ON / OFF) Enable microbenchmarking (defaults to on).

For more build options run the interactive GUI:

cd build
cmake ..
ccmake ..

For more information on binaries, see Command Line Tools section below and the docs.


The following bash should be enough to make some routing data and start a server using it. (Note - if you would like to run an elevation lookup service with Valhalla follow the instructions here).

#download some data and make tiles out of it
#NOTE: you can feed multiple extracts into pbfgraphbuilder
#get the config and setup
mkdir -p valhalla_tiles
valhalla_build_config --mjolnir-tile-dir ${PWD}/valhalla_tiles --mjolnir-tile-extract ${PWD}/valhalla_tiles.tar --mjolnir-timezone ${PWD}/valhalla_tiles/timezones.sqlite --mjolnir-admin ${PWD}/valhalla_tiles/admins.sqlite > valhalla.json
#build routing tiles
#TODO: run valhalla_build_admins?
valhalla_build_tiles -c valhalla.json switzerland-latest.osm.pbf liechtenstein-latest.osm.pbf
#tar it up for running the server
find valhalla_tiles | sort -n | tar cf valhalla_tiles.tar --no-recursion -T -

#grab the demos repo and open up the point and click routing sample
git clone --depth=1 --recurse-submodules --single-branch --branch=gh-pages
firefox demos/routing/index-internal.html &
#NOTE: set the environment pulldown to 'localhost' to point it at your own server

#start up the server
valhalla_service valhalla.json 1
#curl it directly if you like:
curl http://localhost:8002/route --data '{"locations":[{"lat":47.365109,"lon":8.546824,"type":"break","city":"Zürich","state":"Altstadt"},{"lat":47.108878,"lon":8.394801,"type":"break","city":"6037 Root","state":"Untere Waldstrasse"}],"costing":"auto","directions_options":{"units":"miles"}}' | jq '.'



We welcome contributions to valhalla. If you would like to report an issue, or even better fix an existing one, please use the valhalla issue tracker on GitHub.

If you would like to make an improvement to the code, please be aware that all valhalla projects are written mostly in C++11. We use clang-format v7.0 to format the code. We welcome contributions as pull requests to the repository and highly recommend that your pull request include a test to validate the addition/change of functionality.

Note that our CI system checks that code formatting is consistent, and the build will fail if formatting rules aren't followed. Please run ./scripts/ over your code before committing, to auto-format it in the projects preferred style.

Also note that we run some clang-tidy linting over the code as well (see .clang-tidy for the list of rules enforced). You can run ./scripts/ over the code before committing to ensure you haven't added any of the common problems we check for (Note: ./scripts/ requires the exitence of a compile_commands.json database. You can generate this file by running cmake .. -DCMAKE_EXPORT_COMPILE_COMMANDS=On ... && make.

scripts/ is run in CI and will the build if it detects any issues.

Using the Node.js Bindings

The Node.js bindings are still under construction. We are working on building binaries for as many environments as possible, but they may not all be available yet. We have exposed all of the tyr::actor_t actions to the bindings (route, locate, height, isochrone, matrix, optimizedRoute, traceAttributes, traceRoute, transitAvailable). Right now, the input and the output are both strings - THAT WILL LIKELY CHANGE. We plan on ingesting and producing protobufs and/or json.

The Node.js bindings provide read-only access to the routing engine. You can install the Node.js bindings from this repository via $npm install which will check and use pre-built binaries if they're available for this release and your Node version. You can also run npm install valhalla to include the package as a dependency in another project, but we do not have a stable version of the bindings available on the npm org yet. Check the CHANGELOG for the details of the latest release. We also may not have built binaries for your particular setup. You can also build bindings from source with the ENABLE_NODE_BINDINGS option.

We are using node-pre-gyp to manage the bindings for different build systems, and N-API to write the bindings themselves. Node-pre-gyp hooks into the npm install command and goes looking on s3 for the appropriate binary for the system on which it was run. CircleCI currently builds release and debug binaries for linux, and publishes them to s3. To use the debug binaries, run npm install --debug and node-pre-gyp will be told to go find the debug binary instead of the release one.

N-API aims to provide ABI compatibility guarantees across different Node versions and also across different Node VMs - allowing N-API enabled native modules to just work across different versions and flavors of Node.js without recompilations. N-API is a new feature and was experimental until node 8.11.2, after which is it considered stable. Please make sure you are using node 8.11.2+ or node 10 if you want to use the node bindings. We have tested the bindings on 8.11.2, 10.3.0, and 10.6.0 - it is probably safest to pin your node version to one of those, since we have only built binaries for N-API v3. We will consider building binaries for newer N-API versions when and if they are released.

Example of using in a node project:

var Valhalla = require('valhalla');
var valhalla = new Valhalla(configString);
var hersheyRequest = '{"locations":[{"lat":40.546115,"lon":-76.385076,"type":"break"}, {"lat":40.544232,"lon":-76.385752,"type":"break"}],"costing":"auto"}';
var route = valhalla.route(hersheyRequest); // returns a string, other actions also available

Please see the releasing docs for information on releasing a new version.


We highly encourage running and updating the tests to make sure no regressions have been made. We use the Automake test suite to run our tests by simply making the check target:

make check

To run an individual test, make run-<test name> from the build directory or ./test/<testname>

You may check some notes on unit tests

Coverage reports are automatically generated using codecov for each pull request, but you can also build them locally by passing -DENABLE_COVERAGE=On and running make coverage.


Valhalla includes several microbenchmarks which you can build and run using:

make benchmarks
make run-benchmarks

They are enabled by the -DENABLE_BENCHMARKS=On CMake flag and are currently only available for Linux and MacOS.

Command Line Tools


A C++ application that will create a route path with guidance instructions for the specified route request.

./valhalla_run_route -j '<JSON_ROUTE_REQUEST>' --config <CONFIG_FILE>
./valhalla_run_route -j '{"locations":[{"lat":40.285488,"lon":-76.650597,"type":"break","city":"Hershey","state":"PA"},{"lat":40.794025,"lon":-77.860695,"type":"break","city":"State College","state":"PA"}],"costing":"auto","directions_options":{"units":"miles"}}' --config ../conf/valhalla.json

Batch Script Tool

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