Installing igraph ¶
- Installing igraph
This chapter describes how to install the C core of igraph and its Python bindings on Windows, macOS, and GNU/Linux.
Which igraph is right for you?¶
igraph is primarily a library written in C. It is not a standalone program, nor it is a pure Python package that you can just drop in your Python path. Therefore, if you would like to use igraph’s functionality in Python, you must install a few packages. Do not worry, though, there are precompiled packages for the major operating systems. Precompiled packages are often called binary packages, while the raw source code is usually referred to as the source package.
In general, you should almost always opt for the binary package unless a binary package is not available for your platform or you have some local modifications that you want to incorporate into igraph’s source. Installation from a binary package tells you how to install igraph from a precompiled binary package on various platforms. Compiling igraph from source tells you how to compile igraph from the source package.
Installation from a binary package¶
Installing igraph from the Python Package Index¶
To ensure getting the latest binary release of igraph’s Python interface, it is recommended that you install it from the Python Package Index (PyPI), which has installers for Windows, Linux, and macOS. We aim to provide binary packages for the three latest minor versions of Python 3.x.
To install the Python interface of igraph globally, use the following command (you probably need administrator/root privileges):
$ pip install igraph
Many users like to install packages into a project-specific virtual environment. A variation of the following commands should work on most platforms:
$ python -m venv venv $ source venv/bin/activate $ pip install igraph
Alternatively, if you do not want to activate the virtualenv, you can call the
in it directly:
$ python -m venv venv $ venv/bin/pip install igraph
Installing igraph via Conda¶
Users of the Anaconda Python distribution or the conda package manager may opt to install igraph’s Python interface using conda. That can be achieved by running the following command:
$ conda install -c conda-forge python-igraph
igraph on Windows¶
Precompiled Windows wheels for igraph’s Python interface are available on the Python Package Index (see Installing igraph from the Python Package Index).
If you get DLL import errors while trying to import igraph, the most common reason is that you do not have the Visual C++ Redistributable library installed on your machine. Python’s own installer is supposed to install it, but in case it was not installed on your system, you can `download it from Microsoft<https://docs.microsoft.com/en-US/cpp/windows/latest-supported-vc-redist>`_.
Graph plotting in igraph is implemented using a third-party package called Cairo. If you want to create publication-quality plots in igraph on Windows, you must also install Cairo and its Python bindings. The Cairo project does not provide pre-compiled binaries for Windows, but Christoph Gohlke maintains a site containing unofficial Windows binaries for several Python extension packages, including Cairo. Therefore, the easiest way to install Cairo on Windows along with its Python bindings is simply to download it from Christoph’s site. Make sure you use an installer that is suitable for your Windows platform (32-bit or 64-bit) and the version of Python you are using.
After running the installer, you can launch Python again and check if it worked:
>>> import igraph as ig >>> g = ig.Graph.Famous("petersen") >>> ig.plot(g)
If PyCairo was successfully installed, this will display a Petersen graph.
igraph on macOS¶
Precompiled macOS wheels for igraph’s Python interface are available on the Python Package Index (see Installing igraph from the Python Package Index).
Graph plotting in igraph is implemented using a third-party package called Cairo. If you want to create publication-quality plots in igraph on macOS, you must also install Cairo and its Python bindings. The Cairo project does not provide pre-compiled binaries for macOS, but the Homebrew package manager, so you can use it to install Cairo. After installing Homebrew itself, you can run:
$ brew install cairo
After installing Cairo, launch Python and check if it worked:
>>> import igraph as ig >>> g = ig.Graph.Famous("petersen") >>> ig.plot(g)
If Cairo was successfully installed, this will display a Petersen graph.
igraph on Linux¶
igraph’s Python interface and its dependencies have been packaged for most popular Linux distributions, including Arch Linux, Debian, Fedora, GNU Guix, NixOS, and Ubuntu. igraph and its underlying C core are usually in two different packages, but your package manager should take care of that dependency for you.
Distribution packages can be outdated: if you find that’s the case for you, you may choose to install igraph from the Python Package Index instead to get a more recent release (see Installing igraph from the Python Package Index).
Compiling igraph from source¶
igraph binds itself into the main igraph library using some glue code written in C, so you’ll need both a C compiler and the library itself. Source tarballs of igraph obtained from PyPI already contain a matching version of the C core of igraph.
There are two common scenarios to compile igraph from source:
Your would like to use the latest development version from Github, usually to try out some recently added features
The PyPI repository does not include precompiled binaries for your system. This can happen if your operating system is not covered by our continuous development.
Both will be covered in the next sections.
Compiling using pip¶
If you want the development version of igraph, call:
$ pip install git+https://github.com/igraph/python-igraph
pip is smart enough to download the sources from Github, initialize the
submodule for the igraph C core, compile it, and then compile the Python
interface against it and install it. As above, a virtual environment is
a commonly used sandbox to test experimental packages.
If you want the latest release from PyPI but prefer to (or have to) install from source, call:
$ pip install --no-binary ':all:' igraph
If there is no binary for your system anyway, you can just try without the
--no-binary option and
obtain the same result.
Compiling step by step¶
This section should be rarely used in practice but explains how to compile and
install igraph step by step without
First, obtain the bleeding-edge source code from Github:
$ git clone https://github.com/igraph/python-igraph.git
or download a recent release from PyPI or from the Github releases page. Decompress the archive if needed.
Second, go into the folder:
$ cd python-igraph
(it might have a slightly different name depending on the release).
Third, if you cloned the source from Github, initialize the
git submodule for the igraph C core:
$ git submodule update --init
If you prefer to compile and link igraph against an existing igraph C core, for instance
the one you installed with your package manager, you can skip the
git submodule initialization step. If you
downloaded a tarball, you also need to remove the
vendor/source/igraph folder because the setup script
will look for the vendored igraph copy first. However, a particular
version of the Python interface is guaranteed to work only with the version
of the C core that is bundled with it (or with the revision that the
submodule points to).
Fourth, call the standard Python
setup.py script, e.g. for compiling:
$ python setup.py build
(press Enter when prompted). That will compile the Python interface in a subfolder called
build/lib.<your system-your Python version>, e.g. build/lib.linux-x86_64-3.8. You can add
that folder to your
PYTHONPATH if you want to import directly from it, or you can call the
script to install it from there:
$ python setup.py install
setup.py script takes a number of options to customize the install location.
Testing your installation¶
The unit tests are implemented with the standard
unittest module so you can
run them like this from your the source folder:
$ python -m unittest discover