Getting started

Building from source

This step is focused on building Shiboken from source, both the Generator and Python module. Please notice that these are built when you are building PySide from source too, so there is no need to continue if you already have a built PySide.

General Requirements

  • Python: 3.5+ and 2.7

  • Qt: 5.12+ (5.15 is recommended)

  • libclang: The libclang library, recommended: version 10 for Shiboken2 5.15. Prebuilt versions of it can be downloaded here.

  • CMake: 3.1+ is needed.

Simple build

If you need only Shiboken Generator, a simple build run would look like this:

# For the required libraries (this will also build the shiboken2 python module)
python install --qmake=/path/to/qmake \
                        --build-tests \
                        --verbose-build \

# For the executable
python install --qmake=/path/to/qmake \
                        --build-tests \
                        --verbose-build \

The same can be used for the module, changing the value of internal-build-type to shiboken2-module.


If you are planning to use PySide too, for examples like ‘scriptableapplication’ you need to have build it as well. The main issue is that your PySide and Shiboken needs to be build using the same dependencies from Qt and libclang.

Using the wheels

Installing pyside2 or shiboken2 from pip does not install shiboken2_generator, because the wheels are not on PyPi.

You can get the shiboken2_generator wheels from Qt servers, and you can still install it via pip:

pip install \
    --index-url= \
    --trusted-host \
    shiboken2 pyside2 shiboken2_generator

The whl package cannot automatically discover in your system the location for:

  • Clang installation,

  • qmake location with the same version as the one described in the wheel,

  • Qt libraries with the same package version.

So using this process requires you to manually modify the variables:

  • CLANG_INSTALL_DIR must be set to where the libraries are,

  • PATH must include the location for a qmake with the same Qt version as the package,

  • LD_LIBRARY_PATH including the Qt libraries and Clang libraries paths.