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+, 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


To compile from the terminal, follow the last section 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 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

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

Running Open3D tutorials

By default, compiling Open3D will create a Python library under directory build/lib/ or build/lib/release/. A complete set of Python tutorials and testing data will also be copied to the same directory 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.



If there is an error regarding importing py3d, check whether the Python version detected by cmake (see cmake log) and the Python version for command line environment (type python -V) match. If it is not, please follow Python binding in compilation options.

The Python code is quite straightforward, and the detailed explanation can be found in Redwood dataset.

# src/Python/Tutorial/Basic/

import sys

#conda install pillow matplotlib
from py3d import *
import matplotlib.pyplot as plt

if __name__ == "__main__":
    print("Read Redwood dataset")
    color_raw = read_image("../../TestData/RGBD/color/00000.jpg")
    depth_raw = read_image("../../TestData/RGBD/depth/00000.png")
    rgbd_image = create_rgbd_image_from_color_and_depth(
        color_raw, depth_raw);
    plt.subplot(1, 2, 1)
    plt.title('Redwood grayscale image')
    plt.subplot(1, 2, 2)
    plt.title('Redwood depth image')
    pcd = create_point_cloud_from_rgbd_image(rgbd_image,
    # Flip it, otherwise the pointcloud will be upside down
    pcd.transform([[1, 0, 0, 0], [0, -1, 0, 0], [0, 0, -1, 0], [0, 0, 0, 1]])

You may further experiment with different tutorials or check out the complete tutorial list in the Tutorial page.