Python bindings

These are the instructions for building the Python bindings for KDDockWidgets.

Make sure you have PySide6, shiboken6 and shiboken6-generator installed. Their versions need to match your exact Qt version. Since Qt 6.6 all these 3 packages are in PyPi, so you can simply install them with pip. For other Qt versions, consult the respective documentation.

% python3 -m pip install shiboken6==6.6 pyside6==6.6 shiboken6_generator==6.6

A C++17 compliant C++ compiler is also required.

For more info visit

Not supported:

  • debug builds
  • static builds
  • python2
  • only some 32-bit platforms are supported (see
  • Qt5. It probably works, but don't report bugs unless they are reproducible with Qt 6 as well

Tell CMake to build the bindings by passing the `-DKDDockWidgets_PYTHON_BINDINGS=True' option, followed by the make command.

The bindings will be installed to the passed -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX, which might require setting the PYTHONPATH env variable to point to that path when running applications. Alternatively, configure the bindings install location by passing -DKDDockWidgets_PYTHON_BINDINGS_INSTALL_PREFIX=/usr/lib/python3.9/site-packages to CMake (adjust to the python path on your system).

To run the KDDW python example

    export PYTHONPATH=/kddw/install/path # Only if needed
    cd python/examples/
    rcc -g python -o ../../examples/dockwidgets/resources_example.qrc

Build Issues

  • You can override the default Python3 version found by CMake (usually the newest version available) by passing the Python3_EXECUTABLE value to CMake, i.e.
    cmake -DPython3_EXECUTABLE=/usr/bin/python3.10 ....
  • If you see errors like "Unable to locate Clang's built-in include directory" then first make sure you have llvm installed. If you still have problems try setting the environment variable LLVM_INSTALL_DIR to point to your llvm installation.


    export LLVM_INSTALL_DIR=/usr/local/opt/llvm-15
    set "LLVM_INSTALL_DIR=C:\Program Files\LLVM" #Windows
  • When building the examples you may encounter errors loading shared libraries from shiboken2_generator.


    export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/local/lib/python/dist-packages/PySide6/Qt/lib #linux
    export DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/local/lib/python/dist-packages/PySide6/Qt/lib #Mac
    (Adjust to wherever your PySide is installed)
  • On Windows the libclang.dll that ships with QtForPython is not compatible with MSVC2. To fix this, copy the libclang.dll that comes with llvm into shiboken2, like so:
    cd C:\Python39\Lib\site-packages\shiboken6_generator
    copy libclang.dll
    copy "C:\Program Files\llvm\bin\libclang.dll" libclang.dll
    (Python3 installation in C:\Python39 and llvm in c:\Program Files\llvm. adjust as needed)
  • On macOS if you see cstdlib:145:9: error: no member named quick_exit in the global namespace with XCode 15, try making the SDKROOT env variable point to the XCode 14.2 SDK or download a more recent PySide6.