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About the developer

12.0K Stars 783 Forks GNU General Public License v3.0 2.7K Commits 358 Opened issues


Sourcetrail - free and open-source interactive source explorer

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Sourcetrail is a free and open-source cross-platform source explorer that helps you get productive on unfamiliar source code.

Windows: Build status

Linux: Build Status

Links * Website * Download * Quick Start Guide * Documentation * Changelog * Slack Channel * Mailing List * Patreon

"Sourcetrail User Interface"

Sourcetrail is: * free * working offline * operating on Windows, macOS and Linux * supporting C, C++, Java and Python * offering an SDK (SourcetrailDB) to write custom language extensions

Support Sourcetrail via Patreon

The ongoing development and regular software releases are made possible entirely by the support of these awesome patrons! If you'd like to join them, please consider becoming a patron of Sourcetrail.

Using Sourcetrail

To setup Sourcetrail on your machine, you can either download the respective build for your operating system from our list of Releases and install it on your machine, or use one of the following package managers:

After your installation is complete, follow our Quick Start Guide to get to know Sourcetrail.

How to Report Issues

You can post all your feature requests and bug reports on our issue tracker.


Use the following template:

  • platform version:
  • Sourcetrail version:
  • description of the problem:
  • steps to reproduce the problem:


If you want to support a certain feature request or you have the same bug that another user already reported, please let us know: * post a comment with "+1" to the issue * or send an email to [email protected] with the issue ID

How to Contribute

  • Please read and follow the steps in file.
  • You may want to look out for issues labeled good first issue to find some initial tasks to tackle.
  • If you are looking for more information about Sourcetrail software development, please refer to our wiki.

How to Build

Building Sourcetrail requires several dependencies to be in place on your machine. However, our CMake based setup allows to disable indexing support for specific languages which reduces the number of dependencies to a minimum.

Building the Base Application

Required Tools

  • CMake v3.12 (required for Windows, Linux and MacOS)

    • Reason: Used to generate a build configuration for your build system
    • Download:
  • Git (required for Windows, Linux and MacOS)

    • Reason: Used for version control and to automatically generate the Sourcetrail version number from commits and tags
    • Download:
    • Remarks: Make sure
      is added to your
      environment variable before running CMake
  • Visual Studio (required for Windows)

    • Reason: Used for building Sourcetrail
    • Download:
  • ccache (optional for Linux and MacOS)

    • Reason: Used to speed up rebuilds if found in
    • Download:

Required dependencies

  • Boost 1.67

    • Reason: Used for file system access and interprocess communication
    • Prebuilt Download for Windows:
    • Building for Unix:
      $ ./ --with-libraries=filesystem,program_options,system,date_time
      $ ./b2 --link=static --variant=release --threading=multi --runtime-link=static --cxxflags=-fPIC
  • Qt 5.12.3

    • Reason: Used for rendering the GUI and for starting additional (indexer) processes.
    • Prebuilt Download:


On Windows

  • To set up your build environment run:

    $ git clone
    $ cd Sourcetrail
    $ mkdir -p build/win64
    $ cd build/win64
    $ cmake -G "Visual Studio 15 2017 Win64" -DBOOST_ROOT= -DQt5_DIR= ../..
    Hint: If you are using the CMake GUI, we recommend that you activate advanced mode. Also you may be required to add some of the defines via the "Add Entry" button.
  • After generating the build configuration, just open the Sourcetrail.sln file that was generated by CMake and build the Sourcetrail project.

On Unix

  • To set up your build environment run:
    $ cd Sourcetrail
    $ mkdir -p build/Release
    $ cd build/Release
    $ cmake -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE="Release" -DBOOST_ROOT= -DQt5_DIR= ../..
  • Now start the build with:
    $ make Sourcetrail


  • Run Sourcetrail from within the build directory. During execution Sourcetrail needs resources from
    . CMake creates symlinks within the build directory that make these directories accessible.

Enable C/C++ Language Support

Required dependencies

  • LLVM/Clang 11.0.0
    • Reason: Used for running the preprocessor on the indexed source code, building and traversing an Abstract Syntax Tree and generating error messages.
    • Building: Make sure to check out the correct tag:
      git checkout llvmorg-11.0.0
    • Building for Windows: Follow these steps to build the project. Run the cmake command exactly as described.
    • Building for Unix: Follow this installation guide to build the project. Make sure to build with


  • Run CMake with these additional options:
  • Build Sourcetrail as described above.

Enable Java Language Support

Required dependencies

  • JDK 1.8

    • Reason: Used to build the Java indexer and make it callable from the C++ code via JNI.
    • Remarks: Make sure that
      is available in your
      environment variable and that the
      environment variable is set:
  • Maven

    • REASON: Used within Sourcetrail's automated tests.
    • Remarks: Make sure
      is available in your
      environment variable and that both
      environment variables are set:


  • Run CMake with these additional options:
  • Build Sourcetrail as described above.

Enable Python Language Support

Required Tools

  • 7z (required for Windows)
    • REASON: Used to extract the prebuilt SourcetrailPythonIndexer which is downloaded automatically during build execution.


  • Run CMake with these additional options:
  • Build Sourcetrail as described above.

Creating the deployment Package


Required Tools

  • Visual Studio (required for Windows)

    • Reason: Used for building the Sourcetrail Windows installer.
    • Remarks: Make sure to install the
      .Net desktop development
    • Download:
  • Wix 3.11

    • Reason: Used to build the
      Windows installer.
    • Remarks: Make sure to add
      /WiX Toolset v3.11/bin
      to your
      environment variable.
    • Download:
  • Wix extension for Visual Studio

    • Reason: Used to run Wix from the Visual Studio build environment.
    • Download:
  • JRE

    • Reason: Used for indexing the java sample project that ships with the package.
  • WinRAR

    • Reason: Used for creating the final zip files for the installer and the portable package.
    • Remarks: Make sure to add
      to your
      environment variable.


  • Run
    from your Developer Command Prompt for Visual Studio. The script which will generate a 64bit build and packages it into a portable
    file and a Wix-based Windows installer, each.


After building, run the
script within the build directory which will create a
bundle and generate a



from the main directory, which creates both a
and a
package in the main directory. Packaging depends on linuxdeployqt.

How to Run the Tests

The automated test suite of Sourcetrail is powered by Catch2. To run the tests, simply execute the

binary. Before executing, please make sure to set the working directory to


Sourcetrail is licensed under the GNU General Public License Version 3.


The "Sourcetrail" name is a trademark owned by Coati Software and is not included within the assets licensed under the GNU GPLv3.

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