1 - Configuring Qt Creator to Build UE4

Learn how to configure your IDE to build UE4 in Debug and Release mode.

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While some developers like to use text editors and command line debuggers to modify their game's source code, most developers prefer to use an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) to edit, debug, and compile their code. If you're a game developer looking to set up an IDE to work with Unreal Engine 4 (UE4) in a Linux environment, this guide is for you.

Although we recognize that chosing an IDE is a matter of individual preference, we've configured UE4 to interface with three IDEs in Linux; specifically, Qt Creator, KDevelop, and Codelite. We don't endorse one IDE over another; however, as an example for learning purposes, we've chosen to show you how to configure Qt Creator to build and run UE4. By the end of this guide, you'll know how to configure your IDE to build and run UE4. Finally, you'll also learn how to set up the IDE to build and run new C++ (CPP) projects that you create from the Unreal Editor.

Before we begin, please make sure that you've already set up your workflow using our Linux Quick Start . Also, please make sure that Qt Creator is installed on your machine.

  1. Launch Qt Creator, opening the Qt Welcome menu.

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  2. Click the Open Project button to open the Qt Project file browser.

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  3. Navigate to the directory where you built UE4, select the UE4 Qt Project (UE4.pro) file, and click the Open button.

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  4. At this point, Qt Creator hasn't been configured to build UE4 in Debug and Release Mode. Click the Configure Project button located in the Configure Project menu.

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  5. Now, click the Projects button to enter into Projects mode, opening the Build Settings menu.

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    When you open the Build Settings menu, you'll notice that Qt Creator defaults its Edit build configuration: to Debug mode.

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  6. Under the Build Steps section, clear the qmake build step by clicking on the X button next to the Details drop down menu.

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  7. Now, clear the Shadow build checkbox to cancel the selection.

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    Shadow building allows you to build projects in a separate build directory with Qt Creator's qmake utility. Because UE4 is distributed with a custom Make file that makes use of Unreal Build System , you don't need to use Qt Creator's qmake utility.

  8. Now, click the Details drop down menu to open the input form for the Make build step.


  9. Enter UE4Editor-Linux-Debug into the Make arguments: text field.


  10. Under the Clean Steps section, click the Details drop down menu to open the input form for the Make clean step.


  11. Replace clean by entering UE4Editor-Linux-Debug ARGS="-clean" into the Make arguments: text field.


  12. Now, click the Edit build configuration: drop down menu and select Release to open the Build Settings for Release mode.

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  13. Repeat Steps 6 through 11 to edit the build configuration settings for Release mode. Please make sure that your settings match the following image:


    If you'd like to set up additional build configurations for your project, please refer to the Qt Creator Build Settings Documentation , where they show you how to add as many build configurations as you might need.

End Result

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At this point, you've configured UE4 to build in both Debug and Release mode. Depending on your system's specifications, you may notice that UE4 runs slower while in Debug mode. For more information on the performance characteristics of available build configurations, please read through our Build Configurations Reference page. With this in mind, you're ready to configure Qt Creator to run UE4.

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