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Rogers, Chris, 20 June 2013 01:00


This page will take you through getting the prerequisites of installing MAUS and ensuring that it's working.

If you have issue, please file a new support ticket by clicking "new issue" above. Below are some common known problems:

  • Do not have whitespace in your path. Various third_party packages will break. This is beyond the scope of MAUS. See issue #306.
  • If you are at RAL you will need to setup the RAL proxy. Please run export (or equivalent)

Supported Distributions

We support recent versions of
  • Scientific Linux

Other Linux distributions are supported on a "best effort" basis.


Most installation problems are a result of people not reading this section

You will need a few GBs of free space on your harddrive for Geant4 and ROOT (which will be installed along with MAUS).

You will also need a number of prerequisite tools for the software to build and run correctly, such as X11. To be sure that your system has the correct setup, follow the instructions that relate to your system in the following sections.

Scientific Linux/Redhat/Fedora/Centos

To install the tools required to build software on Scientific Linux, you must run the following commands:

sudo yum groupinstall "Development Tools" 
sudo yum groupinstall "Development Libraries" 
sudo yum install wget libX11-devel libXft-devel libXext-devel libXpm-devel libX11-devel libpng-devel tcl-dev tk-dev sqlite3_dev

where the sudo command means that this is run as the root superuser. If you do not have this access, you must ask your system manager.

Scientific Linux 4.8 only. Please also run:

sudo yum install xorg-x11-devel

Optional - for Geant4.9.5.p01. Please also run:

sudo yum install cmake

Debian or Ubuntu

To install the tools required to build software on Debian-based systems, you must run the following commands:

sudo apt-get install build-essential xorg-dev automake autoconf libtool scons zlibc libssl-dev libblas-dev liblapack-dev libpng-dev

where the sudo command means that this is run as the root superuser. If you do not have this access, you must ask your system manager.

Optional - for Geant4.9.5.p01. Please also run:

sudo yum install cmake

RAL ONLY. For RAL people, you need to create a file called /etc/apt/apt.conf and fill it with:

http::proxy "";


To install the required tools, you must run the following command:

sudo zypper install -t pattern devel_C_C++

where the sudo command means that this is run as the root superuser. If you do not have this access, you must ask your system manager.


Remove Canopy if you have it installed. It causes conflicts with the default freetype (Ref. #1291).

Other distribution

Please try using google to find out how to do it for your specific architecture. If you succeed, then please post those instruction here and continue with these instructions. If you fail, please email the user mailing list ().

Getting the code

There are three options for obtaining code.

Using a packaged tarball

Just get the latest release or choose a version from the release page and click on the Source Code tarball link. You may wish to check that the download was okay, for instance by doing

md5sum -c maus.tar.gz.md5

where maus.tar.gz.md5 can be found either by following the md5 link or, for the latest release, clicking here. Then extract the code by doing

tar xvfz maus.tar.gz

You should now have a directory called 'maus'.

Bazaar repository (recommended for developers)

The following command checks out the current source tree for MAUS that is under development. This code branch contains the biweekly stable release.

Bazaar (bzr) is the program we use to maintain the repository. There is a MAUS-specific tutorial of using bzr here. Please branch MAUS. The code is hosted on launchpad under the MAUS project. To get the code, you must then run:

bzr branch lp:maus

and you should now have a directory called 'maus'. If you get a 'command not found', you must install bazaar. If you run into connectivity issues, you can check the bazaar server status here.

If you want to publish results based on MAUS, please use a release version of the code.

Dependencies and building MAUS

MAUS will try to help you by installing all of its dependencies for you.

  • Be careful about using symbolic links to move to this directory prior to installation, as this may confuse the build system. Always try to follow an absolute path instead.
  • If running remotely, you may need to forward X11 connections (use ssh -X or ssh -Y)

You can now run the following command to build all your dependencies, build MAUS, and run the tests for you (this takes about 1 hour for most machines, and 3 hours for VMs!):

cd maus

The build output is automatically stored in a log file like ./install_log_std. Some of the tests check that errors are handled correctly, so we expect some error messages. The tests should end with a line like:

Ran 79 tests in 251.375s

OK (SKIP=20)

Sometimes the test script may skip some tests because a certain library was not available. A test failure looks like

Ran 79 tests in 251.375s

FAILED (errors=1, failures=1)

If you run into issues, please send the output of:

bash run_tests.bash

to us through an issue by clicking 'New Issue' above.

If you are installing multiple copies of maus on the same machine, it is possible to set them to all use the same set of third party libraries, cutting down the installation time to approximately 10 minutes for each extra installation. After setting up the first installation as above, use same command as before but add an argument specifying the root directory of the first maus installation:

./install_build_test.bash /path/to/original/maus

NB: Make sure that you only do this for installations that use the same version of the third party libraries.

You are now ready to run MAUS!


If you aren't sure, a sample install.log can be found here

  • I get errors in the test output: this is normal - if the tests finish with a line like OK, then the tests passed. If the tests finish with a line like FAILED (errors=1, failures=1) (or worse a segmentation fault), then the tests failed. Some of the tests are actually checking that errors are produced on bad input. Sample output for the installer are available.
  • MAUS does not import - are you using a symbolic link? See #770
  • I get a message like FATAL: Failed to install python module matplotlib and then some more error messages - you may need to forward X11 connections to install matplotlib. See #1246
  • I get an error about Python versions when I run ./configure: this is normal - you need to install third party libraries (including python 2.7) by doing
    bash ${MAUS_ROOT_DIR}/third_party/build_all.bash
    Better to just follow the install instructions above.
  • I get a failure in the ROOT build - ROOT fails to find freetype.h - if you have canopy installed, this makes an incompatible version of freetype. Uninstall canopy.

Other useful libraries/applications

MAUS doesn't require these libraries to build or run, but they may provide useful functionality for documentation, installation, etc

Rebuilding with Geant4.9.5

MAUS comes prepacked with a script to build against geant4.9.5.p01. In order to build against geant4.9.5, please use the following script:

bash third_party/install_build_test_geant4.9.5.p01.bash

Note this is an experimental feature - however it is regularly tested against a scientific linux build here


To build the documentation, you will need


We use vrml as our default visualisation format. There are a number of viewers that may or may not work for viewing VRML files.

  • Scientific Linux: If you have a VRML viewer that works in SL, please email the developers.
  • Ubuntu: Try paraview
    sudo apt-get install paraview
    /usr/bin/paraview g4_00.wrl
    click on eye icon in left menu bar
  • Windows: Try Instant Player or FreeWRL
  • Other: There are a few options listed in #1250

Other Stuff

  • lcov C++ code coverage tool (activated by maus_lcov environment variable)
  • bzr for accessing the repository. As easy as
    easy_install bzr

    In ubuntu you may also need to do
    sudo apt-get install libbz2-dev

    which apparently doesn't come by default.