Setting up Rift's development environment.


  • CMake

On Linux:

  • LLVM 14 or higher

Cloning Rift

First of all, you will need to clone the project from

There are many ways to do this, but from the terminal you can for example run:

git clone

Initialize submodules

It is essential we also initialize all submodules (Rift’s dependencies).

To do so, run the following command on the project’s root folder:

git submodule update --init --recursive

Install Dependencies (Linux)

Run the following to install needed dependencies on Linux: sudo apt install build-essential xz-utils curl xorg-dev libx11-dev xlibmesa-glu-dev

Build Rift’s LLVM

Rift uses a custom build process for LLVM which comes packed conveniently with the project, but requires manual setup.

This build can be easily triggered running the script Programs/SetupLLVM.bat (or Programs/ on MacOS/Linux).

Sit and get comfortable, this might take a while.

Optionally, you could use a pre-built LLVM installation instead on MacOS or Linux. Not on Windows however, since its installation of LLVM does not contain certain elements that are required for us to build Rift.

Configure & Build

Any CMake workflow you might like should work fine if you followed the previous steps.

If you for example were to use commands, you could first run cmake -S . -B Build to configure the project, and then cmake --build Build to build it.