MXE (M cross environment) is a Makefile that compiles a cross compiler and cross compiles many free libraries such as SDL and Qt. Thus, it provides a nice cross compiling environment for various target platforms, which

Supported Toolchains

Runtime Host Triplet Status
MinGW 3x i686-pc-mingw32 Fully Supported
MinGW 4x Pilot
MinGW-w64 i686-w64-mingw32 94% (258/275)
x86_64-w64-mingw32 86% (238/275)


Cross compiling 4tH:


and running it:



Step 1: Requirements and Download

First, you should ensure that your system meets MXE's requirements. You will almost certainly have to install some stuff.

When everything is fine, download the current stable version:

git clone -b stable

If you don't mind installing it in your home directory, just skip the following step and go straight to step 3.

MXE builds and installs everything under the same top-level directory and is not relocatable after the first packages are built.

Step 2: System-wide Installation (optional)

Now you should save any previous installation of the MXE. Assuming you've installed it under /opt/mxe (any other directory will do as well), you should execute the following commands:

mv /opt/mxe /opt/mxe.old

Then you need to transfer the entire directory to its definitive location. We will assume again you use /opt/mxe, but feel free to use any other directory if you like.

mv mxe /opt/mxe

We're almost done. Just change to your newly created directory and get going:

cd /opt/mxe

Step 3: Build MXE

Enter the directory where you've downloaded MXE. Now it depends on what you actually want – or need.

If you choose to enter:


you're in for a long wait, because it compiles a lot of packages. On the other hand it doesn't require any intervention, so you're free to do whatever you like – like watch a movie or go for a night on the town. When it's done you'll find that you've installed a very capable Win32 cross compiler onto your system.

If you only need the most basic tools you can also use:

make gcc

and add any additional packages you need later on. You can also supply a host of packages on the command line, e.g.:

make gtk lua libidn

Targets can also be specified on the command line. By default, only i686-pc-mingw32 is built, but you can build your toolchain(s) of choice with:

make MXE_TARGETS='x86_64-w64-mingw32 i686-w64-mingw32'

or by adjusting the MXE_TARGETS variable in

You'll always end up with a consistent cross compiling environment.

If you have trouble here, please feel free to contact the mxe team through the issue tracker or mailing list.

After you're done it just needs a little post-installation.

Step 4: Environment Variables

Edit your .bashrc script in order to change $PATH:

export PATH=/where MXE is installed/usr/bin:$PATH

You may be tempted to also add $(TARGET)/bin to your path. You never want to do this, the executables and scripts in there will cause conflicts with your native toolchain.

In case you are using custom $PKG_CONFIG_PATH entries, you can add separate entries for cross builds:

export PKG_CONFIG_PATH="entries for native builds"
export PKG_CONFIG_PATH_i686_pc_mingw32="entries for MXE builds"

Remember to use i686-pc-mingw32-pkg-config instead of pkg-config for cross builds. The Autotools do that automatically for you.

Note that any other compiler related environment variables (like $CC, $LDFLAGS, etc.) may spoil your compiling pleasure, so be sure to delete or disable those.

For the most isolated and repeatable environment, use a white-list approach:

unset `env | \
    grep -vi '^EDITOR=\|^HOME=\|^LANG=\|MXE\|^PATH=' | \
    grep -vi 'PKG_CONFIG\|PROXY\|^PS1=\|^TERM=' | \
    cut -d '=' -f1 | tr '\n' ' '`

Congratulations! You're ready to cross compile anything you like.

Step 5a: Cross compile your Project (Autotools)

If you use the Autotools, all you have to do is:

./configure --host=i686-pc-mingw32

If you build a library, you might also want to enforce a static build:

./configure --host=i686-pc-mingw32 --enable-static --disable-shared

Don't worry about a warning like this:

configure: WARNING: If you wanted to set the --build type, don't use --host.
If a cross compiler is detected then cross compile mode will be used.

Everything will be just fine.

Step 5b: Cross compile your Project (CMake)

If you have a CMake project, you can use the provided toolchain file:

cmake ... -DCMAKE_TOOLCHAIN_FILE=/where MXE is installed/usr/i686-pc-mingw32/share/cmake/mxe-conf.cmake

Step 5c: Cross compile your Project (Qt)

If you have a Qt application, all you have to do is:

/where MXE is installed/usr/i686-pc-mingw32/qt/bin/qmake

Note that Qt 4 is in the "qt" subdirectory. Qt 5 is in the "qt5" subdirectory and its qmake can be invoked similarly.

If you are using Qt plugins such as the svg or ico image handlers, you should also have a look at the Qt documentation about static plugins.

Note the sql drivers (-qt-sql-*) and the image handlers for jpeg, tiff, gif and mng are built-in, not plugins.

Step 5d: Cross compile your Project (Makefile)

If you have a handwritten Makefile, you probably will have to make a few adjustments to it:


You may have to add a few others, depending on your project.

Then, all you have to do is:

make CROSS=i686-pc-mingw32-

That's it!

Step 5e: Cross compile your Project (OSG)

Using static OpenSceneGraph libraries requires a few changes to your source. The graphics subsystem and all plugins required by your application must be referenced explicitly. Use a code block like the following:


Look at examples/osgstaticviewer/osgstaticviewer.cpp in the OpenSceneGraph source distribution for an example. This example can be compiled with the following command:

i686-pc-mingw32-g++ \
    -o osgstaticviewer.exe examples/osgstaticviewer/osgstaticviewer.cpp \
    `i686-pc-mingw32-pkg-config --cflags openscenegraph-osgViewer openscenegraph-osgPlugins` \
    `i686-pc-mingw32-pkg-config --libs openscenegraph-osgViewer openscenegraph-osgPlugins`

The i686-pc-mingw32-pkg-config command from MXE will automatically add -DOSG_LIBRARY_STATIC to your compiler flags.

Further Steps

If you need further assistance, feel free to join the mailing list where you'll get in touch with the MXE developers and other users.


To obtain the current stable version, run:

git clone -b stable

The development version can be obtained by:

git clone -b master

N.B. when using the development version, ensure you use the local documentation (index.html) - the website reflects the stable branch.

To retrieve updates, run:

git pull

You can also browse the web repository.

In addition, feel free to join the mailing list and to propose new packages.

For Committers

The following .git/config settings ensure that the stable branch will always be pushed to the gh-pages branch in addition to the stable branch, thus ensuring the website will always stay in sync:

[remote "origin"]
        url =
        fetch = +refs/heads/*:refs/remotes/origin/*
        push = refs/heads/master:refs/heads/master
        push = refs/heads/stable:refs/heads/stable
        push = refs/heads/stable:refs/heads/gh-pages
[branch "master"]
        remote = origin
        merge = refs/heads/master
[branch "stable"]
        remote = origin
        merge = refs/heads/stable

Branch Concept

For the sake of simplicity, there are just two branches, "master" and "stable". Although it might seem obvious, here's an overview of the types of changes that go into each branch:

And this is how the branches relete to each other:


MXE requires a recent Unix system where all components as stated in the table below are installed. It also needs roughly 2 GiB of RAM to link gcc and at least 700 MB of disk space per target (counted with only gcc built).

Detailed instructions are available for:

Autoconf ≥ 2.67
Automake ≥ 1.11.3
CMake ≥ 2.8.0
Flex ≥ 2.5.31
GCC (gcc, g++)
Git ≥ 1.7
GNU Coreutils
GNU Gettext
GNU Make ≥ 3.81
Intltool ≥ 0.40
LibC for 32-bit
libffi ≥ 3.0.0
Libtool ≥ 2.2
Perl XML::Parser
Pkg-config ≥ 0.16
SCons ≥ 0.98
XZ Utils

Debian and derivatives

apt-get install autoconf automake bash bison bzip2 \
                    cmake flex gettext git g++ intltool \
                    libffi-dev libtool libltdl-dev libssl-dev \
                    libxml-parser-perl make openssl patch perl \
                    pkg-config scons sed unzip wget xz-utils

On 64-bit Debian, install also:

apt-get install g++-multilib libc6-dev-i386

Only the latest Debian stable series is supported (Wheezy 7.x)


yum install autoconf automake bash bison bzip2 cmake \
            flex gcc-c++ gettext git intltool make sed \
            libffi-devel libtool openssl-devel patch perl pkgconfig \
            scons unzip wget xz

On 64-bit Fedora, there are issues without a 32-bit compiler.


pkg_add -r automake autoconf bash bison cmake coreutils\
           flex gettext git glib20 gmake gsed intltool libffi \
           libtool openssl patch perl p5-XML-Parser pkgconf \
           scons unzip wget

Ensure that /usr/local/bin precedes /usr/bin in your $PATH:

For C style shells, edit .cshrc

setenv PATH /usr/local/bin:$PATH

For Bourne shells, edit .profile

export PATH = /usr/local/bin:$PATH

On 64-bit FreeBSD, there are issues without a 32-bit compiler.

N.B. FreeBSD is no longer fully supported

to build the remainder of MXE, run:


and review that file for the list of packages that are excluded.


pacman-g2 -S autoconf automake bash bzip2 bison cmake \
             flex gcc gettext git intltool make sed libffi libtool \
             openssl patch perl perl-xml-parser pkgconfig \
             scons unzip wget xz xz-lzma

On 64-bit Frugalware, there are issues without a 32-bit compiler.


emerge sys-devel/autoconf sys-devel/automake \
       app-shells/bash sys-devel/bison app-arch/bzip2 \
       dev-util/cmake sys-devel/flex sys-devel/gcc \
       sys-devel/gettext dev-vcs/git \
       dev-util/intltool sys-devel/make sys-apps/sed \
       dev-libs/libffi sys-devel/libtool dev-libs/openssl sys-devel/patch \
       dev-lang/perl dev-perl/XML-Parser \
       dev-util/pkgconfig dev-util/scons app-arch/unzip \
       net-misc/wget app-arch/xz-utils

Mac OS X

Install Xcode 4 and MacPorts, then run:

sudo port install autoconf automake bison cmake coreutils \
                  flex gettext git glib2 gsed intltool libffi \
                  libtool openssl p5-xml-parser pkgconfig scons \
                  wget xz

Mac OS X versions ≤ 10.7 are no longer supported.


zypper install -R autoconf automake bash bison bzip2 \
                  cmake flex gcc-c++ gettext-tools git \
                  intltool libffi-devel libtool make openssl \
                  libopenssl-devel patch perl \
                  perl-XML-Parser pkg-config scons \
                  sed unzip wget xz

On 64-bit openSUSE, install also:

zypper install -R gcc-32bit glibc-devel-32bit \
                  libgcc46-32bit libgomp46-32bit \

Issues without a 32-bit compiler

Certain packages contain native tools that are currently 32-bit only. In order to build these on a 64-bit system, multi-lib support must be enabled in the compiler toolchain. However, not all operating systems support this.

To build the remainder of MXE, specify empty build rules for the affected packages:

make \
            ocaml-cairo_BUILD= \
            ocaml-findlib_BUILD= \
            ocaml-lablgtk2_BUILD= \
            ocaml-camlimages_BUILD= \
            ocaml-flexdll_BUILD= \
            ocaml-native_BUILD= \
            ocaml-core_BUILD= \
            ocaml-lablgl_BUILD= \


All build commands also download the packages if necessary.

In a BSD userland, substitute "make" with "gmake" as all commands are based on GNU Make.

build all packages, non-parallel
make gcc
build a minimal useful set of packages, i.e. the cross compilers and the most basic packages, non-parallel
make foo bar
build packages "foo", "bar" and their dependencies, non-parallel
the package list can also be set in
LOCAL_PKG_LIST := foo bar
.DEFAULT local-pkg-list:
local-pkg-list: $(LOCAL_PKG_LIST)
so a call to make will only build those packages (and their dependencies, of course)
make foo bar --touch
mark packages "foo" and "bar" as up-to-date after a trivial change in one of their dependencies (short option "-t")
make foo bar --jobs=4 JOBS=2
build packages "foo", "bar" and their dependencies, where up to 4 packages are built in parallel (short option "-j 4"), each with up to 2 compiler processes running in parallel
the JOBS variable can also be defined in and defaults to the number of CPUs up to a max of 6 to prevent runaway system load with diminishing returns - see the GNU Make manual for more details on parallel execution
make --jobs=4 --keep-going
build all packages with 4 inter-package parallel jobs and continue as much as possible after an error (short option "-j 4 -k")
make check-requirements
check most of the requirements if necessary – executed automatically before building packages
make download
download all packages, non-parallel, such that subsequent builds work without internet access
make download-foo download-bar
download packages "foo", "bar" and their dependencies, non-parallel
make download-foo download-bar -j 4
download packages "foo", "bar" and their dependencies, where up to 4 packages are downloaded in parallel
make download-only-foo download-only-bar
download packages "foo", "bar", without their dependencies, non-parallel
make clean
remove all package builds – use with caution!
make clean-pkg
remove all unused package files, handy after a successful update
make update
for internal use only! – update the version numbers of all packages, download the new versions and note their checksums
make update-checksum-foo
for internal use only! – download package foo and update its checksum
make cleanup-style
for internal use only! – cleanup coding style

List of Packages

See something missing? Feel free to create a new package.

agg Anti-Grain Geometry
alure alure
apr APR
apr-util APR-util
armadillo Armadillo C++ linear algebra library
atk ATK
atkmm ATKmm
aubio aubio
bfd Binary File Descriptor library
binutils GNU Binutils
blas blas
boost Boost C++ Library
bzip2 bzip2
cairo cairo
cairomm cairomm
cblas cblas
cegui Crazy Eddie’s GUI System (CEGUI)
cfitsio cfitsio
cgal cgal
cminpack cminpack
cppunit CppUnit
cunit cunit
curl cURL
dbus dbus
dcmtk DCMTK
devil DevIL
eigen eigen
exiv2 Exiv2
expat Expat XML Parser
faad2 faad2
ffmpeg ffmpeg
fftw fftw
file file
flac FLAC
flann FLANN
fltk FLTK
fontconfig fontconfig
freeglut freeglut
freeimage FreeImage
freetds FreeTDS
freetype freetype
fribidi FriBidi
ftgl ftgl
gc gc
gcc GCC
gcc-gmp GMP for GCC
gcc-mpc MPC for GCC
gcc-mpfr MPFR for GCC
gd GD (without support for xpm)
gdal GDAL
gdb gdb
gdk-pixbuf GDK-pixbuf
geos GEOS
gettext gettext
giflib giflib
glew GLEW
glib GLib
glibmm GLibmm
gmp GMP
gnutls GnuTLS
graphicsmagick GraphicsMagick
gsl GSL
gsoap gSOAP
gst-plugins-base gst-plugins-base
gst-plugins-good gst-plugins-good
gstreamer gstreamer
gta gta
gtk2 GTK+
gtkglarea GtkGLArea
gtkglext GtkGLExt
gtkglextmm GtkGLExtmm
gtkimageview GtkImageView
gtkmm2 GTKMM
gtksourceview GTKSourceView
gtksourceviewmm2 GtkSourceViewmm
guile GNU Guile
harfbuzz HarfBuzz
hdf4 HDF4
hdf5 HDF5
hunspell Hunspell
icu4c ICU4C
id3lib id3lib
ilmbase IlmBase
imagemagick ImageMagick
itk ITK
jasper JasPer
jpeg jpeg
json-c json-c
lame lame
lapack lapack
lcms lcms
lcms1 lcms1
lensfun lensfun
levmar levmar
libarchive Libarchive
libass libass
libcroco Libcroco
libdnet libdnet
libevent libevent
libf2c libf2c
libffi libffi
libftdi LibFTDI
libgcrypt libgcrypt
libgda libgda
libgdamm libgdamm
libgee libgee
libgeotiff GeoTiff
libglade glade
libgnurx libgnurx
libgomp GCC-libgomp
libgpg_error libgpg-error
libgsasl Libgsasl
libgsf libgsf
libharu libharu
libiberty libiberty
libical libical
libiconv libiconv
libidn Libidn
libircclient libircclient
liblo liblo
liblqr-1 liblqr-1
libmad libmad
libmikmod libMikMod
libmng libmng
libmodplug libmodplug
libntlm Libntlm
liboauth liboauth
libodbc++ libodbc++
liboil liboil
libpano13 libpano13
libpaper libpaper
libpng libpng
librsvg librsvg
librtmp librtmp
libsamplerate libsamplerate
libshout libshout
libsigc++ libsigc++
libsndfile libsndfile
libssh2 libssh2
libtool GNU Libtool
libunistring libunistring
libusb LibUsb
libvpx vpx
libxml++ libxml2
libxml2 libxml2
libxslt libxslt
libzip libzip
llvm llvm
log4cxx log4cxx
lua Lua
lzo lzo
matio matio
mdbtools mdbtools
mingw-utils MinGW Utilities
mingw-w64 MinGW-w64 Runtime
mingwrt MinGW Runtime
mpfr mpfr
muparser muParser
mxml Mini-XML
ncurses Ncurses
netcdf NetCDF
netpbm Netpbm
nettle nettle
nsis NSIS
ocaml-cairo cairo-ocaml
ocaml-camlimages camlimages
ocaml-core ocaml
ocaml-findlib findlib
ocaml-flexdll flexdll
ocaml-lablgl lablgl
ocaml-lablgtk2 lablgtk2
ocaml-native ocaml
ocaml-xml-light xml-light
ogg OGG
old old
openal openal
opencore-amr opencore-amr
opencsg opencsg
opencv OpenCV
openexr OpenEXR
openscenegraph OpenSceneGraph
openssl openssl
opus opus
opusfile opusfile
pango Pango
pangomm Pangomm
pcl PCL (Point Cloud Library)
pcre PCRE
pdcurses PDcurses
pdflib_lite PDFlib Lite
pfstools pfstools
physfs physfs
picomodel picomodel
pixman pixman
plib Plib
plibc Plibc
plotmm PlotMM
plotutils plotutils
poco POCO C++ Libraries
poppler poppler
popt popt
portablexdr PortableXDR
portaudio portaudio
portmidi portmidi
postgresql PostgreSQL
proj proj
protobuf protobuf
pthreads POSIX Threads
pthreads-w32 Pthreads-w32
qdbm QDBM
qjson QJson
qt Qt
qt5 Qt
qtactiveqt Qt
qtbase Qt
qtdeclarative Qt
qtgraphicaleffects Qt
qtimageformats Qt
qtjsbackend Qt
qtmultimedia Qt
qtquick1 Qt
qtquickcontrols Qt
qtscript Qt
qtsensors Qt
qtserialport Qt
qtsvg Qt
qttools Qt
qttranslations Qt
qtxmlpatterns Qt
qwt Qwt
qwtplot3d QwtPlot3D
readline Readline
sdl SDL
sdl_gfx SDL_gfx
sdl_image SDL_image
sdl_mixer SDL_mixer
sdl_net SDL_net
sdl_pango SDL_Pango
sdl_sound SDL_sound
sdl_ttf SDL_ttf
sfml SFML
smpeg smpeg
sox SoX
speex Speex
sqlite SQLite
suitesparse SuiteSparse
t4k_common t4k_common
taglib TagLib
teem Teem
theora Theora
tiff LibTIFF
tinyxml tinyxml
tre TRE
twolame TwoLAME
vigra vigra
vmime VMime
vorbis Vorbis
vtk vtk
vtk6 VTK6
w32api MinGW Windows API
wavpack WavPack
wget wget
winpcap WinPcap
winpthreads MinGW w64 pthreads
wt Wt
wxwidgets wxWidgets
x264 x264
xapian-core Xapian-Core
xerces Xerces-C++
xine-lib xine-lib
xmlwrapp xmlwrapp
xvidcore xvidcore
xz XZ
yasm Yasm
zlib zlib
zziplib ZZIPlib

Guidelines for Creating Packages

  1. The package should be a free software library that is really used by one of your applications. Please also review our legal notes.

    BTW, we're always curious about the applications people are porting. We maintain a list of projects which use MXE. No matter whether your project is free or proprietary – as long as it has its own website, we'd be happy to link to it.

    Also, feel free to link to us. :-)

  2. Grep through the src/*.mk files to find a project that is most similar to yours. (Really, grep is your friend here.)

    For instance, when adding a GNU library, you should take a package like or as the base of your work. When using a SourceForge project, you could start with a copy of And so on.

  3. Adjust the comments, fill in the $(PKG)_* fields.

    To fill the $(PKG)_CHECKSUM field, use a command such as (for file

    make update-checksum-gettext


    openssl sha1 pkg/gettext-x.y.z.tar.gz

    if you have already downloaded the package

    Be especially careful with the $(PKG)_DEPS section. The easiest way to get the dependencies right is to start with a minimal setup. That is, initialize MXE with make gcc only, then check whether your package builds successfully.

    Always list the dependency on gcc explicitly:

    $(PKG)_DEPS     := gcc ...
  4. Add your package to the list of packages.

    Each package gets its own table row element with table cells specifying your package name, official name and website:

        <td class="package">gettext</td>
        <td class="website"><a href="">gettext</a></td>

    Always look for the SSL version of a website, that is, prefer https:// URLs over http:// URLs.

  5. Write your $(PKG)_BUILD. If your library has a ./configure script, enable/disable all dependency libraries explicitly via "--enable-*" and "--disable-*" options.

  6. You might also have to provide a patch for it. In that case, have a look at other patches such as sdl2-2-libtool.patch. In particular, each patch file should be named as:


    and should start with:

    This file is part of MXE.
    See index.html for further information.
    This patch has been taken from:

    where the URL points to the bugtracker entry, mailing list entry or website you took the patch from.

    If you created the patch yourself, please offer it to the upstream project first, and point to that URL, using the same wording: "This patch has been taken from:".

    Depending on the feedback you get from the upstream project, you might want to improve your patch.

  7. If you find some time, please provide a minimal test program for it. It should be simple, stand alone and should work unmodified for many (all?) future versions of the library. Test programs are named as:


    depending on whether it is a C or C++ library. To get a clue, please have a look at existing test programs such as sdl-test.c.

    At the very end of your *.mk file you should build the test program in a generic way, using strict compiler flags. The last few lines of will give you a clue.

  8. You could also try to provide a $(PKG)_UPDATE section. However, that requires some experience and "feeling" for it. So it is perfectly okay if you leave a placeholder:

    define $(PKG)_UPDATE
        echo 'TODO: write update script for $(PKG).' >&2;
        echo $($(PKG)_VERSION)

    We'll fill that in for you. It's a funny exercise.

  9. Check that you don't have "dirty stuff" in your *.mk files, such as TAB characters or trailing spaces at lines endings. Have a look at random *.mk files to get a feeling for the coding style.

    The same holds for your test program.

    However, patch files should always appear in the same coding style as the files they are patching.

    When patching sources with crlf line endings, the patch file itself should also have the same eol style. Use the convention of naming the file as *crlf.patch to instruct git not to normalise the line endings (defined in .gitattributes).

    Finally, in your $(PKG)_BUILD section, please check that you use our portability variables:

    bash $(SHELL)
    date $(DATE)
    install $(INSTALL)
    libtool $(LIBTOOL)
    make $(MAKE)
    patch $(PATCH)
    sed $(SED)
    sort $(SORT)
    wget $(WGET)
  10. Check whether everything runs fine. If you have some trouble, don't hesitate to ask on the mailing list, providing your *.mk file so far.

  11. Issue a pull request to propose your final *.mk file to us. If you have trouble with pull requests, send your file to the mailing list instead.

    Either way, don't forget to tell us if there are some pieces in your *.mk file you feel unsure about. We'll then have a specific look at those parts, which avoids trouble for you and us in the future.

(contact via the project mailing list)

Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.


Disclaimer - it's all code...

Modern legal systems are like any other large, complex, and evolving body of code you're likely to encounter.

They have their own language with quirky parsers, compilers, and interpreters (though these tend to be human). Their issue trackers are a backlog of court cases. They have bugs. They have traps for the uninitiated that may potentially do more than waste your time.

We currently limit ourselves to:


so nothing mentioned here or on the mailing list should be taken as legal advice. :-)

Choosing the right compiler

The best starting point for any legal questions would be the

FTF (Freedom Task Force of the FSFE (Free Software Foundation Europe)).

They have been very helpful in the past, and maintain an extensive network of legal contacts, both within and outside Europe.

Your local jurisdiction may be a signatory to various international agreements, so be sure to mention where you are in any correspondence (much like any detailed bug report really).

Additionally, you should also do some background reading from the FSF (Free Software Foundation) and Wikipedia to familiarise yourself with some of the potential issues (and experience some context-switching overhead).


Contributions are always welcome!

Ownership of all contributions (bug fixes, new packages, doc updates, etc.) remain with the author. All we require is a real name (no l33t handles, please), and that you release your work under our licence.

If you prefer not to be credited with a contribution, please notify the committer.

Package Licences

Each package is individually licensed under terms specified by the authors of that package. Please see the respective source tarball and/or project website for details.

Packages that are non-free or ambiguous will be removed or rejected.

The definition of free must be one of:

Please contact the mailing list if you notice a package that doesn't meet these guidlines.

In addition to the usual considerations (copyrights, patents, trademarks, export regulations etc.), building statically linked libraries for Windows exposes some edge cases that you may not have encountered before.

According to freedom 0 and our own licence, you can use mxe in countless different environments, each with it's own special legal considerations. The configuration options of certain packages (e.g ffmpeg) allow the use of non-free software and/or combinations that cause license violations.

For these packages, we will provide sensible defaults aimed at achieving the following goals:

  1. avoid causing inherent licensing issues with conflicting options
  2. make the package as feature complete as possible

Note that this does not prevent downstream violations, or affect any further obligations a licence may impose on you.

GNU Licenses

Review the FAQ

LGPL and Static Linking

Review the Differences from the GPL section of the Wikipedia article mentioned above.

GPL and OpenSSL

See conflicting accounts from the FSF and the OpenSSL project.


2013-07-27 – Release 2.23

The stable branch was updated to the current development version after a thorough testing phase.

Current users are strongly encouraged to start with a clean tree as the toolchain has been updated and requires a full rebuild:

git pull && make clean && make

Most packages were updated to their latest version.

Many new packages are supported: alure, apr-util, apr, armadillo, cegui, cfitsio, cminpack, flann, gtkglarea, gtkimageview, harfbuzz, hdf4, hdf5, hunspell, icu4c, itk, lensfun, levmar, libf2c, libftdi, libgda, libgdamm, libglade, liblqr-1, libmodplug, librtmp, libzip, log4cxx, mdbtools, ncurses, netcdf, netpbm, ocaml-cairo, ocaml-camlimages, ocaml-core, ocaml-findlib, ocaml-flexdll, ocaml-lablgl, ocaml-lablgtk2, ocaml-native, ocaml-xml-light, opencv, opus, opusfile, pcl, picomodel, plib, plibc, poppler, portablexdr, portmidi, protobuf, qdbm, qt5, qtactiveqt, qtbase, qtdeclarative, qtgraphicaleffects, qtimageformats, qtjsbackend, qtmultimedia, qtquick1, qtquickcontrols, qtscript, qtsensors, qtserialport, qtsvg, qttools, qttranslations, qtxmlpatterns, qwt, sdl_gfx, sfml, sox, teem, twolame, vtk6, wavpack, wget, winpthreads, xapian-core, yasm

Added support for mingw-w64 based toolchains targeting 32 & 64-bit architectures.

With the addition of Qt5, there is no longer a prefixed version of qmake, see the Qt section of the tutorial for the new way to invoke qmake.

FreeBSD is no longer fully supported. Qt5, ocaml*, and 8 other packages are excluded from the build.

2012-04-12 – Release 2.22

The release tarballs have been replaced with a stable branch that conforms to the new branch concept.

The project has been renamed from mingw-cross-env (MinGW cross compiling environment) to MXE (M cross environment).

Most packages were updated to their latest version.

New packages are supported: agg, cgal, eigen, file, gta, json-c, libgnurx, libharu, libircclient, libssh2, libxml++, llvm, lzo, mpfr, nettle, opencsg, qjson, qwtplot3d, vtk, and wt.

2011-06-07 – Release 2.21

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Minor bugfixes in several packages.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

Packages gtkmm and gtksourceviewmm have been renamed to gtkmm2 and gtksourceviewmm2.

New packages are supported: libass, poco, and t4k_common.

2011-04-05 – Release 2.20

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This release fixes a download error caused by the pixman project (a sudden change of their URL scheme without proper redirects). That sort of thing should never happen!

2011-03-19 – Release 2.19

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The download mechanisms are improved.

A CMake toolchain file is provided to simplify cross-compiling projects which use CMake.

Support for Debian/Lenny is dropped.

Package gtk is renamed to gtk2.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

New packages are supported: dbus, graphicsmagick, libical, liboauth, physfs, and vigra.

Note for boost::filesystem users: Version 3 is a major revision and now the default in 1.46.

2010-12-15 – Release 2.18

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This release fixes a checksum error caused by the atkmm project (a sudden change of their current source tarball). That sort of thing should never happen!

2010-12-11 – Release 2.17

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This release provides some improvements of the build system such as an automatic check for most of the requirements.

All packages are updated to their latest version.

New packages are supported: bfd, blas, cblas, dcmtk, ftgl, lapack, lcms1, mingw-utils, mxml, suitesparse and tinyxml.

2010-10-27 – Release 2.16

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This release provides lots of improvements to the build system as well as the documentation.

Support for OpenSolaris is dropped.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

Many new packages are supported: atkmm, cairomm, cunit, faac, faad2, ffmpeg, gdk-pixbuf, glibmm, gtkglextmm, gtkmm, gtksourceview, gtksourceviewmm, imagemagick, lame, libiberty, libsigc++, libvpx, matio, openal, opencore-amr, pangomm, pfstools, plotmm, sdl_sound and x264.

2010-06-16 – Release 2.15

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This release fixes download errors caused by the Qt project (a sudden change of their current source tarball).

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

2010-06-08 – Release 2.14

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This release fixes download errors caused by the MinGW project (a sudden change of their URL scheme without proper redirects). That sort of thing should never happen!

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

New packages are supported: libarchive, libgee and xvidcore.

2010-05-31 – Release 2.13

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This release switches back from TDM to the official GCC, thus supporting the current GCC 4.5.

The set of DirectX headers is improved and more complete.

The deadlock issues with Pthreads-w32 are fixed.

A static build of GDB is provided, i.e. a standalone "gdb.exe" that doesn't require any extra DLLs.

More packages are backed by test programs.

Many "sed hacks" are replaced by proper portability patches.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

Many new packages are supported: fribidi, gc, gdb, gmp, gsl, gst-plugins-base, gst-plugins-good, gstreamer, gtkglext, guile, libcroco, libffi, liboil, libpaper, libshout, libunistring and xine-lib.

2010-02-21 – Release 2.12

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This release fixes some minor build issues, and contains a first small set of test programs to check the package builds.

The build rules are simplified by calling generators like Autotools and Flex, instead of patching the generated files.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

Many new packages are supported: aubio, devil, directx, exiv2, fftw, freeimage, gsoap, id3lib, liblo, libpano13, librsvg, libsamplerate, muparser, openscenegraph, portaudio and sdl_pango.

2010-02-20 – Release 2.11

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This release contains a packaging bug. Please use release 2.12 instead.

2009-12-23 – Release 2.10

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This release adds support for many new packages: flac, libmad, libsndfile, sdl_net, speex, postgresql, freetds, openssl, plotutils, taglib, lcms, freeglut, xerces and zziplib.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

In addition to the libraries some command line tools such as psql.exe are built, too.

The placements of logfiles, as well as many other build details, have been improved.

2009-10-24 – Release 2.9

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This release adds support for Qt, VMime and libmng.

The target triplet is updated to i686-pc-mingw32.

OpenMP support is enabled in GCC.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

2009-09-11 – Release 2.8

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This release comes with a better look & feel by providing a highlevel overview of the build process.

The detailed build messages are stored into separate log files for each package, so parallel builds don't intermix them anymore.

The download URLs of SourceForge packages are adjusted to ensure that the selected SourceForge mirror is really used and not circumvalented via HTTP redirects to other mirrors.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

The whole mingw-cross-env project has moved to Savannah. So all URIs have changed, but the old URIs redirect to the new locations seamlessly.

Everyone is invited to join the freshly created project mailing list.

2009-08-11 – Release 2.7

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This release provides an improved version recognition for SourceForge packages. SourceForge changed their page layout in a way that makes it much harder to identify the current version of a package.

Additionally, almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

2009-06-19 – Release 2.6

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This release contains some portability fixes which allow it to run on a wider range of systems such as Frugalware.

The documentation and website are completely revised.

New packages such as CppUnit, libUsb, NSIS, Popt, SQLite and Theora are supported.

Almost all packages are updated to their latest version.

A new command "make download" is implemented.

2009-04-06 – Release 2.5

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This release fixes a download error caused by the MinGW project. They suddenly changed the names of their source tarballs. That sort of thing should never happen!

This release also contains some bugfixes which allow it to run on a wider range of systems.

All downloaded files are now verified by their SHA-1 checksums.

New versions of various packages are supported.

2009-03-08 – Release 2.4

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This release provides many new libraries such as wxWidgets, GTK+ and OpenEXR.

In addition, new versions of various packages are supported.

2009-02-09 – Release 2.3

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This release fixes some serious build problems on FreeBSD and MacOS-X.

The Makefile has a new target "clean-pkg" and allows to be called from a separate build directory via "make -f .../Makefile".

Some new versions of the packages are supported, especially GCC-4.3 by switching from MinGW GCC to TDM-GCC.

2009-01-31 – Release 2.2

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This release fixes some minor build problems.

It also supports some new packages and some newer versions of the already supported packages.

Parallelization is now disabled by default.

2008-12-13 – Release 2.1

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This release fixes a download error caused by the GDAL project. They suddenly changed their download URLs. That sort of thing should never happen!

In addition, some newer versions of various packages are supported.

There is also a small compatibility fix for OS X.

2008-11-10 – Release 2.0

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The shell script has been rewritten as Makefile and supports partial builds and parallel builds.

As usual, this release also supports some new packages and some newer versions of the already supported packages.

2008-01-11 – Release 1.4

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This release now includes a tutorial by Hans Bezemer and has improved compile options of FLTK. As usual, it supports some newer versions of the libraries.

At the request of its author, libowfat is no longer supported from this release on.

The script now uses a specific SourceForge mirror instead of randomly chosen ones, because the download phase often stumbled on some very slow mirrors.

2007-12-23 – Release 1.3

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A sudden change in the download URLs of GEOS made the automatic download fail. Such changes should never happen! But it happened, and this quick release is an attempt to limit the damage.

This release also supports some newer versions of the libraries including support for fontconfig-2.5.0.

2007-12-13 – Release 1.2

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This release is a switch from gcc-3 to gcc-4. It also supports a new library and some newer versions of the already supported libraries.

2007-07-24 – Release 1.1

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This release is the result of the public attention the release 1.0 got. It contains many improvements suggested by its first users, and adds support for many new libraries.

Thanks to Rocco Rutte who contributed many code snippets.

2007-06-19 – Release 1.0

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This first release has been created in a 7-day-sprint.

2007-06-12 – Project start

See also

This project

Related projects

Related articles

Projects which use MXE