Building Unreal Engine from Source

Compiling Unreal Engine from source code.

Choose your operating system:

Windows

macOS

Linux

Prerequisite Topics

In order to understand and use the content on this page, make sure you are familiar with the following topics:

Building Unreal Engine from Source

Read about Hardware and Software Specifications, and make sure that Microsoft Visual Studio is installed prior to building Unreal Engine (UE) from source. Also, depending on your system's specifications, it may take between 10 and 40 minutes to compile the engine.

  1. Inside the root directory, run GenerateProjectFiles.bat to set-up your project files.

    All project files are intermediate ([Unreal Engine Root Directory]\Engine\Intermediate\ProjectFiles). You must generate project files each time you sync a new build to ensure they are up to date. If you delete your Intermediate folder, you must regenerate project files using the GenerateProjectFiles batch file.

  2. Load the project into Visual Studio by double-clicking UE5.sln.

  3. Set your solution configuration to Development Editor.

    configMenu_updated.png

  4. Set your solution platform to Win64.

    platform_menu_updated.png

  5. Right-click the UE target and select Build.

    BuildUE4.png

Read about Hardware and Software Specifications, and make sure that XCode is installed prior to building Unreal Engine (UE) from Source. Also, depending on your system's specifications, it may take between 10 and 40 minutes to compile the engine.

  1. Inside the root directory, run GenerateProjectFiles.command to set up your project files.

  2. Load the project into XCode by double-clicking UE5.xcodeproj.

  3. To set your build target, select UnrealEditor - Mac for My Mac in the title bar.

    SettingMacTarget.png

  4. To build the project, select Product > Build.

    BuildingMacEditor.png

Our development and support teams currently use the latest version of Ubuntu; as a result, we may not be able to provide support for other Linux distributions (including other versions of Ubuntu). Additionally, read about Hardware and Software Specifications, and make sure your system has at least one hundred (100) gigabytes of disk space before performing the following steps.

  1. Inside the root directory, run Setup.sh from the terminal to setup the files needed to generate the project files.

    RunSetupShellScript_Linux.png

  2. Now, run GenerateProjectFiles.sh from the terminal to generate your project files.

    RunGenPrjFilesShellScript_Linux.png

  3. To build the project, run make from the terminal.

    RunMakeFile_Linux.png

Depending on your system's specifications, it may take anywhere from ten minutes to over an hour to compile the engine. If you want to shorten the time it takes to compile the engine from source, we recommend compiling the source code on a machine that has at least eight (8) gigabytes of RAM, with a multi-core processor having at least eight (8) cores (including hyperthreading).

Running the Editor

  1. Set your startup project to UE.

    SetUE4_StartPrj.png

  2. Right-click the UE project, hover over Debug and click Start New Instance to launch the editor.

    RunCompiledWindowsEditor.png

    Alternatively, you can press the F5 key on your keyboard to start a new instance of the editor.

  3. Congratulations! You've compiled and launched the engine from source.

  1. Select Product > Run to launch the editor.

    RunningMacEditor.png

  2. Congratulations! You've compiled and launched the engine from source.

  1. Navigate to the editor's binary path by entering cd Engine/Binaries/Linux/ into the terminal.

  2. Run UnrealEditor to launch the editor.

    RunUE4Editor_Linux.png

  3. Congratulations! You've compiled and launched the engine from source.

Getting Started with Unreal Engine

Learn how to use Unreal Engine by referring to the Understanding the Basics documentation!

If you're looking to quickly get started with UE, refer to the following tutorials:

UE's in-editor help features are a great way to get your questions answered.

This page was written for a previous version of Unreal Engine and has not been updated for the current Unreal Engine 5.1 release.