Getting Started

This guide gets you started programming with Open3D. The basic tools you need are git, CMake, and a non-ancient C++ compiler that supports C++11, such as gcc 4.8+, Visual Studio 2015 update 3+, or XCode 8.0+. If you want to install the Python binding, make sure you have Python 2.7 or 3.5+ installed.

Compiling from source

Download source code from the repository.

git clone


Run the following commands to install the dependencies and use CMake to build the project.

mkdir build
cd build
cmake ../src
make -j

Install Python binding module by running the following script.

cd util/scripts


To uninstall the open3d module, use


To compile from the terminal, follow the last section for Ubuntu but replace with We use homebrew to manage dependencies. Follow the instructions from the script.

Alternatively, if you want to use Xcode IDE, run:

mkdir build-xcode
cd build-xcode
cmake -G Xcode ../src
open Open3D.xcodeproj/


On Windows, only Visual Studio 2015 update 3 and newer are supported since Open3D relies heavily on C++11 language features. For easy compilation, we have included source code of all dependent libraries in the src/External folder.

You can use the CMake GUI as shown in the following figure. Specify the directories, click Configure and choose the correct Visual Studio version (e.g., Visual Studio 14 2015 Win64), then click Generate. This will create an Open3D.sln file in your build directory.


Alternatively, this file can be generated by calling CMake from the console:

mkdir build
cd build
cmake -G "Visual Studio 14 2015 Win64" ../src


cmake may fail to find PYTHON_EXECUTABLE. In this case, please specify the path manually.

Open Open3D.sln file with Visual Studio, change the build type to Release, then rebuild the ALL_BUILD target.

Install the Python module by building the INSTALL target.


This will show

-- Install configuration: "Release"
-- installing: [PATH_TO_OPEN3D_PYTHON_MODULE].pyd

Simply deleting [PATH_TO_OPEN3D_PYTHON_MODULE].pyd to uninstall the module.

Running Open3D tutorials

Importing open3d module

For quick sanity check, try importing the library from the python interactive shell:


>>> import open3d


If there is an issue, check whether the Python version detected by cmake (see log from cmake) and the Python version for command line environment (type python -V). They should match. If it is not, please follow Python binding in docs. In addition, python binding issue on Github repository has helpful notes from Open3D users.

Python tutorials

A complete set of Python tutorials and testing data will also be copied to demonstrate the usage of Open3D Python interface. For example, tutorial Basic/ can be run with:

cd lib/Tutorial/Basic

It reads a pair of RGB-D images and visualizes them.


It then transforms the RGB-D image into a point cloud, then renders the point cloud using Open3D visualizer.


The Python code is quite straightforward, and the detailed explanation can be found in Redwood dataset. You may further experiment with different tutorials or check out the complete tutorial list in the Tutorial page.


Open3D’s Python tutorial utilizes some external packages: numpy, matplotlib, opencv-python. OpenCV is only used for reconstruction system. Please read util/scripts/ for installing these packages.