There are two main ways to install the Futhark compiler: using a precompiled tarball or compiling from source. Both methods are discussed below. If you are using Linux, see Installing Futhark on Linux. If you are using Windows, see read Setting up Futhark on Windows. If you are using macOS, see Using OpenCL or CUDA.
Futhark is also available via Nix. If you
are using Nix, simply install the
futhark derivation from Nixpkgs.
The Linux binaries we distribute are statically linked and should not require any special libraries installed system-wide.
When building from source on Linux and macOS, you will need to have
zlib libraries installed. These are
pretty common, so you may already have them. On Debian-like systems
(e.g. Ubuntu), use:
sudo apt install libtinfo-dev libgmp-dev zlib1g-dev
If you install Futhark via a package manager (e.g. Homebrew, Nix, or AUR), you shouldn’t need to worry about any of this.
Actually running the output of the Futhark compiler may require additional dependencies, for example an OpenCL library and GPU driver. See the documentation for the respective compiler backends.
1.2. Compiling from source¶
To compile Futhark you must first install an appropriate version of
GHC, either with ghcup or a package
manager. Any version since GHC 9.0 should work. You also need the
cabal command line program, which ghcup will install for you as
You then either retrieve a source release tarball or perform a checkout of our Git repository:
$ git clone https://github.com/diku-dk/futhark.git
This will create a directory
futhark, which you must enter:
$ cd futhark
First you must run the following command to download metadata about Futhark’s dependencies:
$ make configure
To build the Futhark compiler and all of its dependencies, run:
$ make build
This step typically requires at least 8GiB of memory. This will
create files in your
After building, you can copy the binaries to your
directory by running:
$ make install
You can set the
PREFIX environment variable to indicate a
different installation path. Note that this does not install the
Futhark manual pages. You can delete
after this if you wish - the
futhark binary will still work.
1.3. Installing from a precompiled snapshot¶
Tarballs of binary releases can be found online, but are available only for
very few platforms (as of this writing, only GNU/Linux on x86_64).
See the enclosed
README.md for installation instructions.
Furthermore, every day a program automatically clones the Git
repository, builds the compiler, and packages a simple tarball
containing the resulting binaries, built manpages, and a simple
Makefile for installing. The implication is that these tarballs
are not vetted in any way, nor more stable than Git HEAD at any
particular moment in time. They are provided for users who wish to
use the most recent code, but are unable to compile Futhark
We build such binary snapshots for the following operating systems:
1.4. Installing Futhark on Linux¶
Homebrew is a distribution-agnostic package manager for macOS and Linux that contains a formula for Futhark. If Homebrew is already installed (which does not require
rootaccess), installation is as easy as:
$ brew install futhark
NixOS users can install the
Otherwise (or if the version in the package system is too old), your best bet is to install from source or use a tarball, as described above.
1.4.1. Using OpenCL or CUDA¶
If you wish to use
futhark opencl or
futhark cuda, you must
have the OpenCL or CUDA libraries installed, respectively. Consult
your favourite search engine for instructions on how to do this on
your distribution. It is usually not terribly difficult if you
already have working GPU drivers.
For OpenCL, note that there is a distinction between the general
OpenCL host library (
OpenCL.so) that Futhark links against, and
the Installable Client Driver (ICD) that OpenCL uses to actually
talk to the hardware. You will need both. Working display drivers
for the GPU does not imply that an ICD has been installed - they are
usually in a separate package. Consult your favourite search engine
1.5. Installing Futhark on macOS¶
Futhark is available on Homebrew, and the latest release can be installed via:
$ brew install futhark
Or you can install the unreleased development version with:
$ brew install --HEAD futhark
This has to compile from source, so it takes a little while (20-30 minutes is common).
macOS ships with one OpenCL platform and various devices. One of
these devices is always the CPU, which is not fully functional, and is
never picked by Futhark by default. You can still select it manually
with the usual mechanisms (see Executable Options), but it is
unlikely to be able to run most Futhark programs. Depending on the
system, there may also be one or more GPU devices, and Futhark will
simply pick the first one as always. On multi-GPU MacBooks, this is
is the low-power integrated GPU. It should work just fine, but you
might have better performance if you use the dedicated GPU instead.
On a Mac with an AMD GPU, this is done by passing
-dAMD to the
generated Futhark executable.
1.6. Setting up Futhark on Windows¶
Due to limited maintenance and testing resources, Futhark is only partially supported on Windows. A precompiled nightly snapshot is available above.
In most cases, it is better to install WSL and follow
the Linux instructions above. The C code generated by the Futhark
compiler should work on Windows, except for the
1.7. Futhark with Nix¶
Futhark mostly works fine with Nix and NixOS, but when using OpenCL you may need to make
more packages available in your environment. This is regardless of
whether you are using the
futhark package from Nixpkgs or one you
have installed otherwise.
On NixOS, for OpenCL, you should import
ocl-icd. You also need some form of OpenCL backend. If you have an AMD GPU and use ROCm, you may also need
On NixOS, for CUDA (and probably also OpenCL on NVIDIA GPUs), you need
cudatoolkitdoes not appear to provide
libcuda.soand similar libraries. These are instead provided in an
nvidia_x11package that is specific to some kernel version, e.g.
linuxPackages_5_4.nvidia_x11. You will need this as well.
On macOS, for OpenCL, you need
These can be easily made available with e.g:
nix-shell -p opencl-headers -p ocl-icd