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G.1.3 External Packages

The following external packages are required:


Basic Linear Algebra Subroutine library ( Accelerated BLAS libraries such as ATLAS ( are recommeded for better performance.


Linear Algebra Package (


The Perl Compatible Regular Expression library (

The following external package is optional but strongly recommended:

GNU Readline

Command-line editing library (

If you wish to build Octave without GNU readline installed, you must use the --disable-readline option when running the configure script.

The following external software packages are optional but recommended:


Library for the solution of large-scale eigenvalue problems ( ARPACK is required to provide the functions eigs and svds.


Library for transferring data with URL syntax ( cURL is required to provide the urlread and urlwrite functions and the ftp class.


Library for computing discrete Fourier transforms ( FFTW3 is used to provide better performance for functions that compute discrete Fourier transforms (fft, ifft, fft2, etc.)


Portable GUI toolkit ( FLTK is currently used to provide windows for Octave’s OpenGL-based graphics functions.


Library for configuring and customizing font access ( Fontconfig is used to manage fonts for Octave’s OpenGL-based graphics functions.


Portable font engine ( FreeType is used to perform font rendering for Octave’s OpenGL-based graphics functions.


GNU Linear Programming Kit ( GPLK is required for the function glpk.


OpenGL to PostScript printing library ( gl2ps is required for printing when using the FLTK toolkit.


Interactive graphics program ( gnuplot is currently the default graphics renderer for Octave.


Image processing library ( GraphicsMagick++ is used to provide the imread and imwrite functions.


Library for manipulating portable data files ( HDF5 is required for Octave’s load and save commands to read and write HDF data files.

Java Development Kit

Java programming language compiler and libraries. The OpenJDK free software implementation is recommended (, although other JDK implementations may work. Java is required to be able to call Java functions from within Octave.


Compiler framework, ( LLVM is required for Octave’s experimental just-in-time (JIT) compilation for speeding up the interpreter.


API for portable 2-D and 3-D graphics ( An OpenGL implementation is required to provide Octave’s OpenGL-based graphics functions. Octave’s OpenGL-based graphics functions usually outperform the gnuplot-based graphics functions because plot data can be rendered directly instead of sending data and commands to gnuplot for interpretation and rendering.


Computational geometry library ( Qhull is required to provide the functions convhull, convhulln, delaunay, delaunayn, voronoi, and voronoin.


QR factorization updating library ( QRUPDATE is used to provide improved performance for the functions qrdelete, qrinsert, qrshift, and qrupdate.


Source code highlighter and manipulator; a Qt port of Scintilla ( QScintilla is used for syntax highlighting and code completion in the GUI.


GUI and utility libraries (). Qt is required for building the GUI. It is a large framework, but the only components required are the GUI, core, and network modules.


Sparse matrix factorization library ( SuiteSparse is required to provide sparse matrix factorizations and solution of linear equations for sparse systems.


Data compression library ( The zlib library is required for Octave’s load and save commands to handle compressed data, including MATLAB v5 MAT files.

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