vfplot source installation

Executive summary

Building vfplot is quite standard: the usual

make install

Use the --prefix option to ./configure if you want to install elsewhere than /usr/local.

See ./configure --help for a full list of configuration options.

Optional features

If the NetCDF library is found then vfplot will be able to read GMT grd files.

If the matio library is found then vfplot will be able to read mat (Matlab binary) files.

If you want support for Gerris flow solver files use the --enable-gerris option in configuration. You will need to have a recent version of the Gerris software.

If the pthread (POSIX thread) library is found then vfplot will support multithreaded force calculations giving a substantial speedup on multiprocessor hardware.

If the zlib library is found then the graphics state files will be compressed with gzip (see the --graphic-state option).

Platform specific notes

The program should compile on any modern POSIX operating system with a C99 compiler. It is developed on Linux on the x86, AMD64 and Sparc architectures with the GNU C compiler.

Windows XP with Cygwin

The program is tested on Windows XP with the Cygwin POSIX compatibility layer.

To build, first use the Cygwin startup.exe program to install the gcc, make and zlib pacakges. Then obtain, compile and install the netcdf and libmatio libraries listed above. Finally, configure with --disable-pthread then make and install as usual.


The POSIX thread (pthread) library supplied with the OS does not include some functionality on which vfplot relies (in particular, barriers). That functionality can be provided by a built-in implementation with the --enable-pthread-extra configuration option.