digiKam API reference page.

digiKam is an advanced open-source digital photo management application that runs on Linux, Windows, and MacOS.

(c) 2001-2022 digiKam team.

Source Code Directories

digiKam is split into a number of components, each ones located to a dedicated directory. The main namespace is Digikam for the digiKam application and all sub components. A second one is ShowFoto for the stand alone version of image editor.

See below the complete list of directories used by the project:

├── AUTHORS List of developers and contributors to the project
├── bootstrap.linux Configuration script to compile under Linux
├── bootstrap.local Configuration script to compile a local version under Linux
├── bootstrap.macports Configuration script to compile under MacOS with Macports
├── bootstrap.mxe Configuration script to cross-compile for Windows under Linux with MXE
├── build Temporary directory created by bootstrap script to host compiled files
├── ChangeLog Complete list of source code changes since the project origin
├── CMakeLists.txt Main Cmake script including lead compilation rules for the project
├── COPYING Main project license
├── COPYING-CMAKE-SCRIPTS Cmake files license
├── COPYING.LIB Internal shared libraries license
├── download-repos Script to download all source code including extra repositories
├── gits Script to perform git in recursive mode over multiple repositories
├── gitup Script to perform git pull –rebase in recursive mode
├── Mainpage.dox API documentation main page based on Doxygen
├── Messages.sh Script to extract strings for translators
├── NEWS Notice to resume all project changes done at release time
├── README.DEVEL Read me file for developers
├── README.md First start helper documentation
├── README.BUNDLES Read me for Linux, MacOs, and Windows bundles support
├── build Directory to store compiled files and binary targets
├── core All source code are hosted in this directory
│ ├── app Lead application component
│ │ ├── date All date relevant views
│ │ ├── dragdrop Drag and drop helper classes
│ │ ├── filters Tags filter widgets
│ │ ├── items Item management classes
│ │ │ ├── delegate Item view delegate
│ │ │ ├── overlays Item overlays
│ │ │ ├── thumbbar Item thumbbar widget
│ │ │ ├── utils Item utility classes
│ │ │ └── views Item view classes
│ │ ├── main Main digiKam application
│ │ ├── utils Generic utility classes
│ │ └── views Views classes
│ │ ├── preview Item preview classes
│ │ ├── sidebar Left sidebar contents
│ │ ├── stack Stacked-view show in central place of main digiKam window
│ │ ├── tableview Table-view classes
│ │ └── utils View utility classes
│ ├── cmake Extra Cmake scripts will be hosted here
│ │ ├── modules Cmake scripts to find extra dependencies
│ │ └── templates Cmake template files used at configuration time
│ ├── data Application data files will be hosted here
│ │ ├── about Welcome page files (HTML + CSS)
│ │ ├── colorschemes GUI Color scheme files
│ │ ├── database Database XML configuration files
│ │ ├── facesengine Face detection and recognition data files
│ │ ├── filters Image filters data files
│ │ ├── geolocation Geolocation tool data files
│ │ ├── hotplug Hotplug Linux integration files
│ │ ├── htmlgallery HTML gallery tool data files
│ │ ├── icons Application icons
│ │ ├── metadata Metadata tool data files
│ │ ├── pics Application pictures
│ │ ├── printcreator Print Creator tool data files
│ │ ├── profiles Basis open source ICC color profiles
│ │ └── scripts Miscs maintenance scripts
│ ├── dplugins All digiKam plugins will be hosted in this directory
│ │ ├── bqm All Batch Queue Manager plugins
│ │ │ ├── colors All color adjustments plugins
│ │ │ ├── convert All file convert plugins
│ │ │ ├── custom All user-custom processing plugins
│ │ │ ├── decorate All decorate item plugins
│ │ │ ├── enhance All enhance item plugins
│ │ │ ├── filters All filter item plugins
│ │ │ ├── metadata All metadata edit plugins
│ │ │ └── transform All transform item plugins
│ │ ├── editor All Image Editor plugins
│ │ │ ├── colors All color adjustments plugins
│ │ │ ├── decorate All decorate item plugins
│ │ │ ├── enhance All enhance item plugins
│ │ │ ├── file All file processing plugins
│ │ │ ├── filters All filter item plugins
│ │ │ └── transform All transform item plugins
│ │ ├── generic All generic plugins
│ │ │ ├── import Tools to import items
│ │ │ ├── metadata Plugins to change items metadata
│ │ │ ├── tools Plugins hosted in Tools main menu
│ │ │ ├── view Plugins to display items
│ │ │ └── webservices All plugins to import and export items to remote web-services
│ │ ├── rawimport All Raw import plugins
│ │ └── dimg All DImg image loader plugins
│ ├── libs digiKam core sub-components (few are shared with Showfoto)
│ │ ├── album All classes use to manage digiKam albums operations and properties
│ │ ├── database All low level database interface is here
│ │ │ ├── collection All classes relevant of collections management
│ │ │ ├── coredb The core database interface used to host all image properties
│ │ │ ├── dbjobs All database multi-threaded jobs
│ │ │ ├── engine The low level database engine classes
│ │ │ ├── haar The similarity low level algorithms to compute image finger-prints
│ │ │ ├── history The item history classes for the database
│ │ │ ├── item The database item classes, including containers, lister, and scanner
│ │ │ ├── models The database model classes
│ │ │ ├── server The Mysql internal server
│ │ │ ├── similaritydb The similarity database
│ │ │ ├── tags The database tags management classes
│ │ │ ├── thumbsdb The thumbnails database
│ │ │ └── utils Miscs tools and widgets used with database
│ │ ├── dialogs Common dialogs
│ │ ├── dimg The Qt digiKam image data container support ICC and 16 bits color depth
│ │ │ ├── filters All image filters will be hosted here. All support 16 bits color depth
│ │ │ │ ├── auto Auto colors correction filters
│ │ │ │ ├── bcg Brightness-Contrast-Gamma filter
│ │ │ │ ├── bw Black and White image converter, including infrared filter
│ │ │ │ ├── cb Colors balance filter
│ │ │ │ ├── curves Colors curves filter
│ │ │ │ ├── decorate Decorate filters
│ │ │ │ ├── film Analog film emulation filters
│ │ │ │ ├── fx Special effect filters
│ │ │ │ ├── greycstoration Cimg based restoration filter
│ │ │ │ ├── hsl Hue-Saturation-Lightness filter
│ │ │ │ ├── icc Icc color profile filters
│ │ │ │ ├── imgqsort The image quality sort algorithms
│ │ │ │ ├── lc Local contrast filter (pseudo HDR)
│ │ │ │ ├── lens Lens corrections filters, including Qt Lensfun interface
│ │ │ │ ├── levels Color levels filter
│ │ │ │ ├── nr Wavelets noise reduction filter
│ │ │ │ ├── redeye Red-eyes parser and fixer
│ │ │ │ ├── sharp Image sharp filter, including Unsharped-mask and Refocus
│ │ │ │ ├── transform All image transformation filters
│ │ │ │ └── wb White balance filter
│ │ │ ├── imagehistory Image history interface for image container
│ │ │ └── loaders All DImg image loaders interface
│ │ ├── metadataengine The metadata wrapper based on Exiv2 for image and FFMpeg for video
│ │ ├── dngwriter Qt classes to convert RAW files to DNG format
│ │ │ └── extra DNG and XMP sdks from Adobe
│ │ ├── dplugins All shared dplugins classes are hosted here
│ │ │ ├── core Low level classes for plugins definitions
│ │ │ ├── iface Low level classes for host interface definitions
│ │ │ ├── setup Classes to setup plugins in configuration panel
│ │ │ ├── webservices Common classes for Webservices tools
│ │ │ └── widgets Common widget sfor plugins
│ │ ├── dtrash digiKam trash manager full independent of desktop trash
│ │ ├── facesengine Face detection and recognition engine + Faces database implementations
│ │ │ ├── alignment-congealing Face alignment based on congealing method
│ │ │ ├── alignment-flandmark Face alignment based on flandmark method
│ │ │ ├── detection Face detection algorithms
│ │ │ ├── dnnface Deep-learning face algorithms
│ │ │ ├── facedb Faces database classes
│ │ │ ├── opencv3-face OpenCV version 3 face management classes
│ │ │ ├── preprocessing-tantriggs Face pre-processing based on tantriggs method
│ │ │ ├── recognition-dlib-dnn Deep-learning faces recognition module
│ │ │ ├── recognition-opencv-eigenfaces Eigen faces recognition module
│ │ │ ├── recognition-opencv-fisherfaces Fisher faces recognition module
│ │ │ ├── recognition-opencv-lbph LBPH bases faces recognition module
│ │ │ └── shape-predictor Shape predictor algorithms
│ │ ├── fileactionmanager Classes to connect database and metadata actions to file operations
│ │ ├── filters Widgets to filter items by metadata properties
│ │ ├── imageproperties All widgets used in right side-bar from all main views
│ │ ├── iojobs Multithreaded jobs manager used with files operations
│ │ ├── jpegutils Utilities to process JPEG files
│ │ │ └── libjpeg JPEG loss-less transform private implementations from libjpeg
│ │ ├── kmemoryinfo Qt backend to analyze system memory information
│ │ ├── models Qt models used with item views
│ │ ├── notificationmanager Multi-desktop notifications wrapper
│ │ ├── pgfutils Qt Classes to work with PGF image format
│ │ ├── progressmanager Multi-level operations progress widget
│ │ ├── rawengine Qt classes to work with libraw decoder
│ │ │ └── libraw Internal Libraw sdk
│ │ ├── settings digiKam settings manager
│ │ ├── tags Classes to play with tags
│ │ │ └── tagsmanager Tags manager view
│ │ ├── template Metadata template support
│ │ ├── threadimageio Classes to process thumbs and preview extraction including video support
│ │ ├── threads Classes to manage and chain threads using multi-core
│ │ ├── timeadjust Common classes time adjustments tools
│ │ ├── transitionmngr Frames transitions manager
│ │ ├── versionmanager Classes to manage versioning operations
│ │ ├── video Classes to play with video contents
│ │ └── widgets To host plenty of widgets used everywhere
│ │ ├── colors Colors relevant views
│ │ ├── combo Combo-box helper classes
│ │ ├── common Uncategorized widgets
│ │ ├── files File operation classes
│ │ ├── fonts Font management classes
│ │ ├── graphicsview Graphics-view implementation (model-view)
│ │ ├── iccprofiles ICC color profiles widgets
│ │ ├── imagehistory Image history widgets
│ │ ├── itemview Item-view implementations (model-view)
│ │ ├── layout Layout helper classes
│ │ ├── mainview Common top-level view implementations
│ │ ├── metadata Metadata widgets
│ │ └── range Range helper classes
│ ├── showfoto Stand alone image editor
│ │ ├── main Main Showfoto application
│ │ ├── setup Showfoto Setup views
│ │ └── thumbbar Showfoto thumb-bar views
│ ├── tests Unit tests
│ └── utilities digiKam utilities and advanced tools (few are shared with showfoto)
│ ├── advancedrename Advance rename tool
│ ├── extrasupport Extra desktop features support as Baloo search engine
│ ├── facemanagement Face management classes and tools
│ ├── firstrun First-run assistant to configure lead digiKam settings
│ ├── fuzzysearch Similarity search tools
│ ├── geolocation All geo-location tools are located here
│ │ ├── editor Tool to edit items geo-location
│ │ ├── geoiface All shared classes used by geo-location tools
│ │ ├── geomapwrapper Legacy helper classes for geo-location support
│ │ └── mapsearches Tool to perform map searches
│ ├── imageeditor The famous digiKam image editor, a lots of classes shared with Showfoto
│ │ ├── core Core implementation including canvas and tools interface
│ │ ├── dialogs Image editor dialogs
│ │ ├── editor The core image editors classes
│ │ ├── main The main digiKam image editor view, not shared with Showfoto
│ │ └── widgets All common widgets
│ ├── import The import tools, including USB MAss Storage, Gphoto2, and Sane support
│ │ ├── backend Camera backends
│ │ ├── dialogs Import tools dialogs
│ │ ├── items Import item classes
│ │ ├── main Import tool main view
│ │ ├── models Import model classes
│ │ ├── views Import view classes
│ │ └── widgets Import common widgets
│ ├── lighttable The Light-table tool to compare images side by side
│ ├── maintenance The digiKam tool to maintain the database contents
│ ├── queuemanager The famous Batch Queue Manager tool
│ │ ├── main The main BQM view
│ │ ├── manager The multi-core manager to run tools in background
│ │ ├── tools All BQM tools classed by functions
│ │ └── views The BQM internal views
│ ├── searchwindow The powerful advanced search tool
│ ├── setup All digiKam setup panel, with few ones shared with Showfoto
│ │ ├── album Album configuration views
│ │ ├── camera Camera configuration views
│ │ ├── collections Collection configuration views
│ │ ├── editor Image Editor configuration views
│ │ └── metadata Metadata configuration views
│ └── slideshow The simple slideshow tool
├── doc Handbooks directory
│ ├── digikam digiKam manual
│ ├── project Extra files for the documentation
│ └── showfoto Showfoto manual
├── extra Optional extra libraries to compile advanced features
└── project Extra project parts
├── bundles Bundles build scripts
│ ├── 3rdparty External components required to build bundles
│ ├── CD Continuous deployment configurations
│ ├── appimage Linux AppImage
│ ├── flatpak Linux Flatpak
│ ├── macports MacOs package
│ └── mxe Windows installer
├── documents Project documentations
├── release Release scripts
├── reports Static analyzers report scripts for Continuous Integration
└── scripts 3rdparty source code management scripts

External Dependencies

Dependencies To Checkout All Source Code

Dependencies To Process Translations Files (optional)

Dependencies To Compile And Link Source Code

The full list of mandatory (X) and (optional) external dependencies required to compile and link digiKam source code is listed below.

Dependency Requirement Version (Qt5) Version (Qt6) Project URL Remarks Notes
CMake X >= 3.16.0 >= 3.22.0 https://www.cmake.org
ECM X >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/extra-cmake-modules Qt6 support implemented in KDE framework >= 5.91.0
Qt::Core X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/
Qt::Gui X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/
Qt::Widgets X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/
Qt::Network X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/
Qt::Sql X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/ Including Qt::Sqlite and Qt::Mysql plugins
Qt::Xml X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/
Qt::Concurrent X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/
Qt::PrintSupport X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/
Qt::Svg X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtsvg.git/
Qt::WebEngine X >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtwebengine.git/ To render web contents (ENABLE_QWEBENGINE=on) To replace Qt5::WebKitWidgets everywhere, excepted for MXE
Qt::Core5Compat X >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qt5compat.git/ to compile with deprecated classes from Qt5 For Qt6 only. Planed to remove.
Qt::WebKitWidgets optional >= 5.212 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtwebkit.git/ To render web contents Used with MXE only as WebEngine do not compile with MinGW. Not yet ported to Qt6.
Qt::XmlPatterns optional >= 5.14 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtxmlpatterns.git/ To parse and validate Xml Used by Rajce plugin. Module removed with Qt6.
Qt::X11Extras optional >= 5.14 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtx11extras.git/ For color management support under Linux Module removed with Qt6.
Qt::DBus optional >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/ Optional: only for Linux Desktop
Qt::OpenGL optional >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/ For Presentation tool
Qt::OpenGLWidgets optional >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/ For Presentation tool With Qt6, OpenGL is separated in 2 modules: core and widgets.
Qt::Test optional >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtbase.git/ To compile test codes (BUILD_TESTING=on)
Qt::Qml optional >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtdeclarative.git/ To compile test codes (BUILD_TESTING=on) O2 unit tests
Qt::WebView optional >= 5.14 >= 6.2.3 https://code.qt.io/cgit/qt/qtwebview.git/ To compile test codes (BUILD_TESTING=on) O2 unit tests
KF::Config X >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kconfig
KF::XmlGui X >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kxmlgui
KF::I18n X >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/ki18n
KF::WindowSystem X >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kwindowsystem
KF::Service X >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kservice TODO: make optional for Linux desktop (DFileOperations)
KF::Solid X >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/solid
KF::CoreAddons X >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kcoreaddons Needs for KAboutData
KF::NotifyConfig optional >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/knotifyconfig For Linux desktop application notify configuration
KF::Notifications optional >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/knotifications For Linux desktop notifications integrations
KF::ThreadWeaver optional >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/threadweaver For panorama tool
KF::IconThemes optional >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kiconthemes Optional: only for Linux Desktop (KIconDialog)
KF::FileMetaData optional >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kfilemetadata Plasma desktop files indexer support (ENABLE_KFILEMETADATASUPPORT=ON) Disabled by default.
KF::CalendarCore optional >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kcalendarcore For calendar tool to setup ical special events
KF::KIO optional >= 5.55.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/frameworks/kio Optional: only for Linux Desktop
KF::AkonadiContact optional >= 5.16.0 >= 5.91.0 https://invent.kde.org/pim/akonadi-contacts Plasma desktop addess-book support (ENABLE_AKONADICONTACTSUPPORT=ON) Disabled by default.
libopencv X >= 3.3 https://github.com/opencv/opencv OpenCV 4 recommended DNN module required for face management
libtiff X >= 4.0 https://gitlab.com/libtiff/libtiff For DImg TIFF image loader
libpng X >= 1.6 https://libpng.sourceforge.io/ For DImg PNG image loader
libjpeg X >= 6b https://github.com/libjpeg-turbo/libjpeg-turbo jpeglib >= 8.0 hightly recommended for RawEngine
libboost X >= 1.55.0 https://github.com/boostorg/boost For Versioning support
liblcms X >= 2.x https://github.com/mm2/Little-CMS For Color Management support
libexpat X >= 2.1.0 https://libexpat.github.io/ For RAW to DNG converter
libexiv2 X >= 0.27.0 https://github.com/Exiv2/exiv2 Metadata low level management.
libxml2 optional >= 2.7.0 https://gitlab.gnome.org/GNOME/libxml2/ For HtmlGallery tool
libxslt optional >= 1.1.0 https://gitlab.gnome.org/GNOME/libxslt For HtmlGallery tool
libqtav optional >= 1.12.0 > 1.13.0 https://github.com/wang-bin/QtAV To play video and audio (ENABLE_MEDIAPLAYER=on) Qt6 support add in git master code later january 2022
libffmpeg optional >= 3.3.x https://git.ffmpeg.org/ffmpeg.git To play video and audio (ENABLE_MEDIAPLAYER=on) libavformat, libavutil, libavcodec used to extract video metadata
Flex optional >= 2.5.0 https://github.com/westes/flex For Panorama tool
Bison optional >= 2.5.0 https://www.gnu.org/software/bison/bison.html For Panorama tool
libmesa optional >= 11.0 https://www.mesa3d.org/ For Presentation tools (Linux only)
libksane optional >= 5.55.0 https://invent.kde.org/graphics/libksane Digital scanner support Not yet ported to Qt6
libmarble optional >= 0.28.0 https://invent.kde.org/education/marble For geolocation support Not yet ported to Qt6
libjpasper optional >= 1.900.1 https://github.com/jasper-software/jasper For JPEG-2000 support
libeigen3 optional >= 3.2 https://github.com/eigenteam/eigen-git-mirror For Refocus tool See if Clapack from OpenCV can be used instead
liblensfun optional >= 0.2.8 https://github.com/lensfun/lensfun For LensCorrection tool
liblqr-1 optional >= 0.4.2 https://github.com/carlobaldassi/liblqr For Liquid rescale tool
libgphoto2 optional >= 2.5 https://github.com/gphoto/libgphoto2 Digital camera drivers support. Need libusb-1
libgomp optional >= 5.0 https://gcc.gnu.org/onlinedocs/libgomp OpenMP support for RawEngine
libmagick++ optional >= 6.7.0 https://www.imagemagick.org ImageMagick codecs support for DImg image loader Version >= 7.0 recommended
DrMingw optional >= 0.8.2 https://github.com/jrfonseca/drmingw Mingw crash handler (run-time deps only for windows)
libx265 optional >= 2.2 https://x265.org/ For HEIC encoding support

Get Source Code

Software Components

digiKam project use a single git repository from GitLab to host whole source code base. The project page is given below:


The digikam handbook source code is hosted in a separate GitLab repository:


Development Environment

If you are a developer with push access to the git repositories, it is strongly recommended to use the "kde:" prefix and let git use the read-only mirrors for pulling.

If you did not clone this repository from "kde:", do it again:

git config --global url.git://anongit.kde.org/.insteadof kde:
git config --global url.ssh://git@git.kde.org/.pushinsteadof kde:
git clone kde:digikam

See below an example of .gitconfig file working with a developer account :

[url "git://anongit.kde.org/"]
insteadof = kde://
[url "git@git.kde.org:"]
pushinsteadof = kde://
[url "ssh://git@git.kde.org/"]
pushinsteadof = kde://
up = pull --rebase -v --stat
ci = commit -a -v
editor = mcedit
name = my name
email = my email
default = tracking
# turn on color
diff = auto
status = auto
branch = auto
interactive = auto
ui = auto
[color "branch"]
current = green bold
local = green
remote = red bold
[color "diff"]
meta = yellow bold
frag = magenta bold
old = red bold
new = green bold
[color "status"]
added = green bold
changed = yellow bold
untracked = red
[color "sh"]
branch = yellow
[color "sh"]

Cmake Configuration Options

To configure the project with CMake, use dedicated "bootstrap" script for your platform where all available configuration options are present with default values.

There are two configuration sections : the top level and the core.

Top Level Configuration

  • Packaging options:
    • DIGIKAMSC_COMPILE_DIGIKAM : Build digiKam core (default=ON).
    • DIGIKAMSC_CHECKOUT_PO : Extract application translation files from remote repositories (default=ON).
    • DIGIKAMSC_CHECKOUT_DOC : Extract documentation translation files from remote repositories (default=ON).
    • DIGIKAMSC_COMPILE_DOC : Build handbook i18n files. It require to checkout documentation translations files before from remote repositories (default=ON).
    • DIGIKAMSC_COMPILE_PO : Build GUI i18n files. It require to checkout application translations files before from remote repositories (default=ON).
  • Developers only options:
    • BUILD_TESTING=ON : Build tests code (default=ON).

Core Configuration

  • Extra feature support options:
    • ENABLE_KFILEMETADATASUPPORT : Build digiKam with KDE files indexer support (default=OFF).
    • ENABLE_AKONADICONTACTSUPPORT : Build digiKam with KDE Mail Contacts support (default=OFF).
    • ENABLE_MEDIAPLAYER : Build digiKam with Media Player support (default=OFF).
    • ENABLE_DBUS : Build digiKam with DBUS support (default=ON).
    • ENABLE_APPSTYLES : Build digiKam with support for changing the widget application style (default=OFF).
    • ENABLE_QWEBENGINE : Build digiKam with QWebEngine instead of QWebKit (default=ON).
  • Experimental support options
    • ENABLE_MYSQLSUPPORT : Build digiKam with MySQL dabatase support (default=ON).
    • ENABLE_INTERNALMYSQL : Build digiKam with internal MySQL server executable (default=ON).
  • Developers only options:
    • ENABLE_DIGIKAM_MODELTEST : Enable ModelTest on some models for debugging (default=OFF).
    • ENABLE_SANITIZERS : Enable ASAN and UBSAN sanitizers when available (default=OFF).
    • BUILD_WITH_CCACHE : Use ccache to speed up compilations (default=OFF)
  • Packaging options
    • ENABLE_DRMINGW : Enable the Dr. Mingw crash handler for windows (default=ON).
    • ENABLE_MINGW_HARDENING_LINKER : Enable DEP (NX), ASLR, and high-entropy ASLR linker flags for MinGW (default ON).

Setup Local Compilation and Run-Time

This section describes how to install digiKam from the git repository, while keeping a system-wide digiKam install.

This procedure is based on the configure script bootstrap.local

  1. Set the root directory for your git install in bootstrap.local (DIGIKAM_INSTALL_PREFIX variable)
  2. If you want a clean build directory, set CLEANROOT to 1
  3. Type the following command in your terminal:
$ ./bootstrap.local # or "./bootstrap.local --eclipse" if you intend to use Eclipse
$ cd build
$ make
$ make install
$ KDESYCOCA="/your/root/directory/var/tmp/kde-$USER/ksycoca5" kbuildsycoca5

To run digikam, use the following commands:

$ export KDESYCOCA=/your/root/directory/var/tmp/kde-$USER/ksycoca5
$ export QT_PLUGIN_PATH=/your/root/directory/lib64/plugins:/your/root/directory/lib/plugins:$QT_PLUGIN_PATH
$ export XDG_DATA_DIRS=/your/root/directory/share:$XDG_DATA_DIRS
$ /your/root/directory/bin/digikam

The same applies for all binaries in /your/root/directory/bin/

If your shell is bash, you can edit your .bashrc file (in $HOME) and add the following alias:

alias digikam-dev="KDESYCOCA=\$DIGIKAMROOT/var/tmp/kde-$USER/ksycoca5 XDG_DATA_DIRS=\$DIGIKAMROOT/share:\$XDG_DATA_DIRS QT_PLUGIN_PATH=\$DIGIKAMROOT/lib64/plugins:\$DIGIKAMROOT/lib/plugins:\$QT_PLUGIN_PATH \$DIGIKAMROOT/bin/digikam"

then you can start your newly installed digikam with

$ digikam-dev

Debug Traces At Run-Time

digiKam uses categorized logging at run-time. By default, all debug messages are printed on the console. To disable output, you can either fine-grained control by using one or more logging categories listed below.

Note: under Windows, to catch all debug messages you need to install an extra Microsoft application named DebugView available at this url: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb896647.aspx

Logging Using an Environment Variable

You can set the environment variable QT_LOGGING_RULES. Rules are divided by semicolons.

E.g. you can start digiKam like this on the command line with thumbnails and core database messages disabled:

export QT_LOGGING_RULES='digikam.thumbsdb=false:digikam.coredb=false'

Logging Categories in digiKam

All logging categories are listed in digikam_debug.cpp source code.

Further Reading

For more details see the Qt framework documentation about logging categories available at this url: https://doc.qt.io/qt-5/qloggingcategory.html#details

Cmake compilation rules


The whole project is written mostly in C++/Qt and the Cmake framework is used to compile under Linux, MacOs, and Windows. The Cmake rules have been configured to reduce the linking overhead and improve CPU utilization with modular design.

Independent Cmake configuration is presents in following folders:

  • root source dir
  • core
  • doc

The Cmake rules will build the following targets:

  • digikamcore shared lib
  • digikamdatabase shared lib
  • digikamgui shared lib
  • digikam executable
  • showfoto executable
  • plugin shared libraries (dplugins)
  • various test executables - if testing is enabled
  • various unit-tests - if testing is enabled

Each of them depend on various sources which must be compiled before. A complete description of source code direction is given to the sourcedirs section.

CMake Implementation Details

Include Directories

Local include directories are all managed by this snippet of code:


The libjpeg- folders are all included, so we need to delete them all and include the correct one only:

# This macro will set all paths which do not contain libjpeg-
# We will add later the directory we need
STRING(REGEX MATCH "libjpeg-" item ${var})
IF(item STREQUAL "")

There is no need for manual intervention to add new includes, even if you add a new folder, just keep in mind to use:

instead of :

Shared Libraries

To avoid linking overhead and make a better use of sources there are some dynamic libs as these one:

  • digikamcore : core components used by almost all executables as digiKam and Showfoto.
  • digikamdatabase : database components, also used together with digikamcore but only for digiKam

Please add sources to digikam core or digikam database only if they don't depend on any big component from digikam main executable. These two shared libs must be kept small because they link in a lot of places

Static Libraries

Currently cmake configuration features a lots of shared libraries as:

  • metadataedit
  • geolocationedit
  • digikamfaceengine

This libraries are linked in digikam main executable and some tests tools.

Avoid making static libraries if possible, and use OBJECT libraries instead. Only make STATIC libraries which does not depend on other digikam code. Also make sure you put the PRIVATE parameter when setting the target_link_libraries.


Object Libraries

While static libraries are still collection of objects, CMake offer a better approach by allowing to specify an OBJECT library:

add_library(slideshow_src OBJECT ${libslideshow_SRCS})

OBJECT library is a cmake internal implementation feature and allow to easily manage sources. Here is an example of how to make a shared lib using OBJECT libraries:

$<TARGET_OBJECTS:slideshow_src> # the lib we made few lines above

Contribute To The Code

This section's purpose is to guide contributors and developers to help on the digiKam project.

Starting With Open-Source

Before to contribute to digiKam project, please take a look to this link which provide 10 golden rules for starting with open source project:


Source Code Formatting

Adhere to this style guide strictly while adding new code to digiKam or working on existing code.

Indentation length

Indent with 4 spaces exactly.

For example:

void function()
....int a; // 4 spaces from beginning
....for (int i = 0 ; i < 10 ; ++i) // 4 spaces from beginning
....{ // 4 spaces from beginning
........a = i; // 4 spaces from previous indent block

Emacs by default will indent to 4 spaces vim users add this to you .vimrc set tabstop=4

Tabs vs Spaces

Absolutely no tabs. Use a sensible editor which will convert tabs to spaces. This will reduce unnecessary changes in your git commits.

Emacs by default will convert tab to spaces. For vim users, add this to your .vimrc set expandtab

Line length

Line length should never exceed 80 chars (unless really necessary - these cases are rare). Having long lines greatly reduces readability of code


In all cases, {} brackets should start on a newline and should be aligned with previous line (follow the indentation spaces). For example.

class A
{ //new line
for (int i = 0 ; i < 10 ; ++i)
{ //new line
if (a == foobar)
{ //new line
{ // new line

Positioning of Access modifiers

public, private, protected, public slots, ... should be aligned to the beginning of the line with no margin

class A
public: // aligned to left
private Q_SLOTS: // aligned to left

Follow a consistent order in defining these attributes. The recommended order is public, protected (functions), private (functions), signals, public slots, protected slots, private slots, private (variables)

Class, file and Variable names

Class and filenames

  • filenames should always be in lower-case
  • class names should match the filenames. Capitalize the first letter and other letters logically to improve readability

Protected Member variables

  • protected member variable names should always be of the form m_varName.
  • Capitalize logically so that it becomes easy to read it. Do not capitalize the first letter after _ (Use m_varName not m_VarName)
  • variable names should be indicative of their functionality and also of the type they belong too if they are instances of qt widgets. For example, QCheckBox* m_autoRotateCheckBox;

Non-Member variables

  • non-member variables should follow the same naming convention as the member variables, except for the leading m_

Private Member variables

  • private member variables must be stored in a d private container to reduce compilation time and improve binary compatibility between digiKam components. See more information how to use a 'd' private class at this url:


Comments and Whitespace

Use whitespaces liberally to improve readability. Add blank lines between logical sections of the code.

Comment as much as possible. Position comments at the beginning of the section/line you want to comment, NEVER at the end of the line, excepted for special cases for ex to describe enum values.

// put your comments here
a = (b == foobar) ? 1 : -1;
a = (b == foobar) ? 1 : -1; // you are asking for trouble by putting comments here

Header Files

  • Add copyright to top of every file. Use the same header than others digiKam source code.
  • Double inclusion protection defines are all upper case letters and are composed of the class name and a H suffix separated by underscore
class AnotherNiceClass
  • Use forward declarations as much as possible.
class QFileInfo;
class A
....QFileInfo* m_fileInfo;

Automatic source code formatting

The above coding style guidelines can be automatically applied with astyle (http://astyle.sourceforge.net/).

Run it in the directory where the files are located that should be formatted.

To apply the coding guidelines with astyle is to use the fileformatter.py script in project/scripts directory. This script will also clean up the source tree and remove backup files that had been created by astyle, if the appropriate command line argument is given.

To handle the command easier, create a bash function in ~/.bashrc, e.g.

astyle --style=allman \
--indent=spaces=4 \
--convert-tabs \
--indent-switches \
--break-blocks \
--break-closing-brackets \
--pad-header \
--align-pointer=type \
--indent-col1-comments \
--add-brackets \
--min-conditional-indent=0 \
`find $1 -type f -name '*.cpp'` `find $1 -type f -name '*.c'` `find $1 -type f -name '*.h'`

You can pass a parameter to the function, in this case the first parameter is the directory, where files should be formatted.


  1. Run astyle in the current directory
    $> dkfrmcode
  2. Run astyle in a different directory
    $> dkfrmcode /home/user/code/git/digikam/

General recommendations

Please take a look into this contrib page tips before to write code/patches for digiKam project : http://techbase.kde.org/Contribute

Use the same .cpp/.h header than the rest of digiKam project.

Use a decent editor which does auto-indentation/syntax-highlighting for you, as Kate or QtCreator

There are excellent initializer scripts in the kdesdk package for xemacs and vim which can substantially increase your productivity.

Just to give a taste of what i can do with emacs (and kdesdk):

automatically insert copyright (and ifdefs) in new files. insertion of class function definitions for declared class functions in header with one keystroke switch between header and declaration files with one keystroke go to corresponding definition/declaration with one keystroke tab completion of variable/function names already declared.

GDB Backtrace

If you found a context to crash digiKam, you can provide a backtrace using GDB debugger. digiKam need to be compiled with all debug info else the backtrace will not suitable. There is a configure option for that:

$> cmake . -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=debugfull
$> make
$> su
$> make install/fast

To make a backtrace with GDB use following command:

$ gdb digikam
> catch throw
> run
> ...
> _crash here_
> ...
> bt
> _the backtrace is here_
> quit

Post this backtrace at the right place (Bugzilla or development mailing list) for investigation by developers.

For Windows users, take a look on this tutorial :


Memory Leak

To check any memory leak problem in digiKam, valgrind is your friend (http://valgrind.org) Try this command line to use with valgrind :

valgrind --tool=memcheck --leak-check=full --error-limit=no --suppressions=project/reports/digikam.supp digikam

NOTE: digikam.supp file is available in digikam/project sub-folder.

Profiling With Cachegrind

Valgrind also includes a tool to find out in which parts of your code time is spent.

valgrind --tool=callgrind digikam

Profiling can be disabled at startup to limit the output to the code you are interested in. Start with

valgrind --tool=callgrind --instr-atstart=no digikam

and prepare the situation you want to profile. Then, in another console, start profiling with "callgrind_control -i on" and, after the situation has passed, request a profile dump with "callgrind_control -d". The resulting callgrind.out files need to be viewed with the kcachegrind program, e.g.:

kcachegrind callgrind.out.16693.1

Unit Testing / Automated Testing

Unit Testing is great way to ensure that software units (in OOP this normally means classes) work as expected. Wikipedia gives a good introduction to Unit Testing:


It is also worth to follow most of QTTest API rules with digiKam:


The digiKam test suite is located under tests and will be compiled if BUILD_TESTING is turned ON at cmake configuration time. After compiling the source code the tests can be executed via

make test

The console output while running the tests is stored in Testing/Temporary/LastTest.log in the CMake binary dir.

All tests are simple binaries that can be executed separately if needed.

Checking For Corrupt Qt Signal Slot Connection

Use this alias for running digikam:

alias digikamdbg="digikam 2>&1 | tee - /tmp/digikam.out; echo -e \"\n\n\nPossible connection errors:\n\n\"; cat /tmp/digikam.out | grep -A2 'Object::connect'"

It will print a list of connection warnings after terminating the program. Moreover the complete console log of the last session is stored in /tmp/digikam.out.

Finding Duplicated Code

Code duplication should be avoided as bugs have to be fixed for every piece of duplicated code. The current duplication can be analyzed eg. with Simian: http://www.redhillconsulting.com.au/products/simian/

In the digikam checkout directory run:

java -jar simian.jar `find . -regex '.*\.cpp\|.*\.h' | grep -v 3rdparty`

This prints out a list of duplicated code segments.

API Documentation Validation, User Documentation Validation, Source Code Checking

The following site check on a daily basis for the a.m. errors: www.englishbreakfastnetwork.org/krazy/

It can be very useful, in particular before major releases. Don't trust it blindly! Sometimes they propose too advanced modifications that are no compatible with the prevailing include files.

Usability Issues

OpenUsability project has define default menu structure and keyboard shortcuts:


Generate API Documentation

To generate API documentation, you need to install:

After cmake generated a Makefile you can call 'make doc'. A new subfolder named 'html' will be created. Warning, this can take a while.

For finding documentation errors, doxygen generates a warning log file at the cmake binary dir called 'doxygen-warn.log'.

Speed Up The Code-Compile-Test Cycle

Assuming you have setup your environment in ~/.bashrc as is suggested for development, you can add something like this to your ~/.bashrc:

function digikam_start
LD_LIBRARY_PATH=${KDE_BUILD}/extragear/graphics/lib:${LD_LIBRARY_PATH} ${KDE_BUILD}/extragear/graphics/digikam/digikam/digikam
function digikam_start_gdb
LD_LIBRARY_PATH=${KDE_BUILD}/extragear/graphics/lib:${LD_LIBRARY_PATH} gdb ${KDE_BUILD}/extragear/graphics/digikam/digikam/digikam

This allows you to run digikam after compiling without the need of a "make install", even if you changed code in the libraries.

Working With Branches From Git Repository

Example to create a local 'dplugins' development branch based on master:

git checkout master
git checkout -b development/dplugins

Example to delete the local 'dplugins' development branch:

git checkout master
git branch -d development/dplugins

Example to create a remote 'dplugins' development branch from the local branch:

git push -u origin development/dplugins

Example to delete the remote 'dplugins' development branch:

git push origin :development/dplugins

Sync a Branch With Master From Git Repository

It typical to use a dedicated development branch in Git to keep the master code stable for production. To synchronize branches with master, use these commands in your local branch checkout:

$>git checkout master
$>git pull --rebase
Branch 'MY_DEVEL_BRANCH' set up to track remote branch path 'GIT_REMOTE_PATH' from origin.
To list GIT_REMOTE_PATH, use 'git branch -a' command
Switched to a new branch 'MY_DEVEL_BRANCH'
$>git merge master
Merge made by the 'recursive' strategy.
$>git push
DIGIKAM_DATABASE_EXPORT QString merge(const QStringList &keywordList)
Definition: coredbsearchxml.cpp:867

The first 2 lines make sure that your local master repository is up to date. The 3rd line creates the local development branch "MY_DEVEL_BRANCH". If you have already created this branch, just run "git checkout MY_DEVEL_BRANCH". Merging between master and "MY_DEVEL_BRANCH" branch is done in the 4th line. Git might ask you to resolve conflicts here. When it's done, it will ask you to provide a commit message. Finally you push your merge into the remote repository.