This chapter describes the manual installation of EDGE and its dependencies from scratch.


EDGE’s entire installation process is continuously tested. If you get stuck with this user guide, you might be able to find additional installation hints in the respective configurations:

Getting the Code

EDGE’s sources are hosted at GitHub. The repository has two branches master and develop. master is the most recent stable version of EDGE. Periodically EDGE also provides tags, which are simply snapshots of the master branch. Typically tags passed additional, manual testing. We recommend to use the most recent tag to get started with EDGE. develop is the bleeding edge version of EDGE. Changes in develop are intended to be merged into master. However, develop is for ongoing development and broken from time to time.

The procedure for obtaining the code is as follows:

  1. Clone the git-repository and navigate to the root-directory through:

    git clone
    cd edge

    This gives you the master-branch. If this is what you want, jump over the next step.

  2. Checkout the desired tag:

    git checkout YY.MM.VV

    Remark: YY.MM.VV is a place holder. You have to replace this with your actual tag. Available tags are shown at the GitHub-homepage or directly through git tag.

  3. Initialize and update the submodules:

    git submodule init
    git submodule update

External Dependencies

EDGE relies on a collection of open-source software:

  • LIBXSMM is the single core backend of EDGE’s high-performance kernels. LIBXSMM is optional, but highly recommended due to severe performance-limitations of the vanilla kernels.
  • zlib is a requirement for the HDF5 library.
  • HDF5 is a requirement for point source descriptions and for EDGE-V, EDGE’s mesh interface.
  • Gmsh is used to read and write meshes.
  • METIS is used for partitioning in EDGE-V.

Scripts which install the external dependencies are available in the tools/build/deps-directory.


At runtime EDGE-V interfaces the mesh and respective annotations as a library. Further details on preprocessing use-cases, e.g., the derivation of local time stepping schemes or mesh partitioning, are given in Sec. EDGE-V. Assuming that all external dependencies are installed in ./deps do the following to install EDGE-V:

  1. Navigate to EDGE-V’s source directory:
cd tools/edge_v
  1. Run the build script:
scons parallel=omp zlib=../../deps hdf5=../../deps gmsh=../../deps metis=../../deps install_dir=../../deps


EDGE (and EDGE-V) use SCons as build tool. scons --help returns all of EDGE’s build-options. All build options are given in the respective sub-section of Sec. Configuration. You can enable the libraries in EDGE either by passing their installation directory explicitly (recommended) or by setting the environment variables CPLUS_INCLUDE_PATH and LIBRARY_PATH. For example, let’s assume that you installed LIBXSMM in the directory $(pwd)/deps. Than we could either enable LIBXSMM by passing xsmm=$(pwd)/deps to EDGE’s SCons-script or by using CPLUS_INCLUDE_PATH=$(pwd)/deps/include LIBRARY_PATH=$(pwd)/deps/lib scons [...] xsmm=yes.

If something goes wrong with finding a library, EDGE will tell you so. For example, if we did not install LIBXSMM in /tmp, but tell EDGE so anyways, we get:

scons equations=elastic order=4 cfr=1 element_type=tet4 xsmm=/tmp
Checking for C++ static library
  Warning: Could not find libxsmm, continuing without.

Further information on what went wrong is logged in the file config.log, which, in this case, shows that the compiler could not find the LIBXSMM-header:

scons: Configure: Checking for C++ static library libxsmmnoblas..
.sconf_temp/conftest_2.cpp <-
  |#include <libxsmm.h>
  |int main(int i_argc, char **i_argv) { return 0; }
g++ -o .sconf_temp/conftest_2.o -c -std=c++11 -Wall -Wextra -Wno-unknown-pragmas -Wno-unused-parameter -Werror -pedantic -Wshadow -Wundef -O2 -ftree-vectorize -DPP_N_CRUNS=1 -DPP_T_EQUATIONS_ELASTIC -DPP_T_ELEMENTS_TET4 -DPP_ORDER=4 -DPP_PRECISION=64 -I. -Isrc -I/tmp/include .sconf_temp/conftest_2.cpp
.sconf_temp/conftest_2.cpp:1:21: fatal error: libxsmm.h: No such file or directory
compilation terminated.
scons: Configure: no