Building Paraview's superbuild

Hi all, I am quite new to the Linux environment and I want to build Paraview on my machine. Is there a set of coherent step by step instructions that I can follow to build Paraview and all its dependencies on my machine with as little headache as possible? Thanks in advance.

Yes there is. With Linux, the superbuild is not the simplest way to build ParaView. See here :

If you only want to use ParaView, you can also download our binaries here :

This is what I’m looking for thank you. I am ultimately looking to render my data off-screen and have no interaction with the GUI, will I need any additional information?

You do not need to build ParaView for that. Just use pvpython.

Edit: What do you mean exactly by “off-screen” ?

If I have a python script I can just run it in my Linux machine and it will save a screen shot of a 3d render without any interaction with the GUI. I guess headless would be the better term.

Well, headless could mean that you do not have a GPU or that you do not have a X server running.

If you do have a GPU and a X server running, you can just download the release and use pvpython to achieve your goal.

The machine that I will ultimately end up using Paraview on will not have a GPU.

Ok ! In this case you will need to build with osmesa. If your linux distribution does not provide an osmesa package, I would suggest trying to build the ParaView superbuild.

Thanks @mwestphal, I do not have osmesa is their a set of instructions to follow to install the superbuild outside of what is provided on the gitlab repo?

The instructions are indeed there.

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Hi @mwestphal, I am again picking up this task after transitioning to other elements of my work for a few months. I am still having trouble building the SuperBuild after reading through the gitlab repository’s readme. I am trying to build this on my debian10 machine to do some experimentation, but I can not seem to get the SuperBuild to work. I need headless support for my work as the machine I will be using does not have a GPU and presumably does not have the osmesa package.

My approach:

  • Clone the repo
  • cd paraview-superbuild
  • git fetch origin
  • git checkout v5.9.0-RC3
  • mkdir …/build
  • cd …/build
  • ccmake …/paraview-superbuild

I get stuck at the CMake cache editor, I am not sure which options should be ON/OFF as the gitlab repository’s readme doesn’t seem to explain it well enough for me. I apologize for my ignorance, but I am not super experienced with build from source.

the following configuration should be what you need:


Keep in mind that this will only generate a osmesa capable pvserver.

This seemed to work however after a few hours of building I got an error near completion. I am presuming that this is an issue with osmesa? I don’t have a clue to why the script would be missing.

 -- extracting... [tar xfz]
 -- extracting... [analysis]
 -- extracting... [rename]
 -- extracting... [clean up]
 -- extracting... done
 [ 88%] No patch step for 'osmesa'
 [ 90%] No update step for 'osmesa'
 [ 90%] Revert autoconf dist-xz to dist-bzip2
 [ 90%] Fix incompatible sed flags in configure
 [ 92%] Fix llvm7 build failure for swr
 [ 92%] Performing configure step for 'osmesa'
 ./ 9: ./ autoreconf: not found
 CMake Error at /home/usr/build/superbuild/sb-osmesa-configure.cmake:47 
 Failed with exit code 1

 make[2]: *** [superbuild/CMakeFiles/osmesa.dir/build.make:120: 
 superbuild/osmesa/stamp/osmesa-configure] Error 1
 make[1]: *** [CMakeFiles/Makefile2:3689: superbuild/CMakeFiles/osmesa.dir/all] Error 2
 make: *** [Makefile:130: all] Error 2

Install automake on your linux.

On ubuntu, it is something like:

sudo apt-get install automake

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