Using OpenSim Binaries in Linux

You will need to manually set some environment variables in order to compile/run examples/Visualizer. These are:

  • OPENSIM_HOME=/path/to/where/opensim/is/installed

Building OpenSim in Linux


  • CMake: download and install the binary one 
  • Simbody build for linux
  • LAPACK/BLAS: liblapack/libblas (These linear algebra libraries would be needed to build Simbody, alternatively you could also use SimTKLapack).
  • GL libraries: libGL/gl.h (needed only if you build the Visualizer)


  1. Obtain source code from either SimTK download page or OpenSim repository.
  2. Create a build directory and cd into it.
  3. Run ccmake with argument of where the OpenSim source is located (i.e. "ccmake ~/Downloads/OpenSim30"). You will encounter a list of errors, hit e to exit into CMake's main menu.
  4. Specify where Simbody is installed, and where you want OpenSim to be installed.
  5. Press c for configure, there should be no errors, and a generate option will appear at the bottom. Press g to generate.
  6. Now you will see a list of files in the build directory, enter "make" to build OpenSim.
  7. Enter "make test" to make sure all unit tests pass successfully. "make install" to install OpenSim in the directory you specified in CMake. 


  • Users of Ubuntu 12.04 might find it difficult to look for libraries to install because of the new software download application. It's recommended that you install Synaptic Manager back and you can search for specific libraries there.
  • Avoid installing OpenSim or Simbody in directories where sudo access is required.