This page provides a guide to the installation of the cWB pipeline.


The easiest way to start using cWB on your computer is to install an “image” of cWB within a “virtualized”/”containerized” environment: you can freely choose between cWB VirtualBox image and cWB Docker container. Instructions on how to run cWB on VirtualBox and Docker are reported in the FAQs, here and here, repectively. The ensemble of the following two Dockerfiles, i.e. Dockerfile1 and Dockerfile2, from the cWB public container project can be regarded as a step-by-step procedure to install a complete cWB environment on a Debian Bullseye (i.e. 11.X) system.

Before installing cWB, all the needed auxiliary libraries have to be already installed.

LVK : cWB libraries are already pre-installed on the LIGO-Virgo clusters together with the auxiliary libraries. In case you want to compile a specific version or make some changes to the code, you can use the pre-installed auxiliary libraries and go directly to cWB install.


cWB libraries have been tested mainly on Scientific Linux (CentOS) and Debian Linux distributions (though we don’t expect major problems from installing cWB on different Linux distributions). cWB can also be installed on Mac OS X (with some minor modifications).

How to install the auxiliary libraries


For Scientific Linux 7.9 (Nitrogen) it is possible to download a tgz file with all pre-compiled auxiliary libraries from this link: cWB_Auxiliary_Libraries_SL79_64bit_v1.tgz or from CIT cluster LVK : cWB_Auxiliary_Libraries_SL79_64bit_v1.tgz

First, the directories where the packages will be imstalled must be created:

setenv HOME_LIBS "user libraries path"
mkdir $HOME_LIBS
  1. ROOT is an object oriented framework for large scale data analysis
  2. HEALPix is an acronym for Hierarchical Equal Area isoLatitude Pixelization of a sphere
  3. CFITSIO is a library of C and Fortran subroutines for reading and writing data files in FITS (Flexible Image Transport System) data format
  4. FRAMELIB is a software (Frame Library) dedicated to the frame manipulation including file input/output
  5. Baudline is a time-frequency browser designed for scientific visualization of the spectral domain.
  6. LAL is a package including various gravitational wave data analysis routines
  7. CVODE (used by eBBH) solves initial value problems for ordinary differential equation (ODE) systems

The following table reports the list of the auxiliary libraries and their instructions:

ROOT mandatory  
FRAMELIB mandatory  
HEALPix mandatory  
CFITSIO mandatory needed by HEALPix
Baudline optional time-frequency display
LAL optional nedeed for CBC simulation
CVODE optional needed by eBBH simulation
SKYMAP optional produce skymap-display

How to install the cWB libraries

Two scenarios are considered:

  1. The user wants to perform an analysis with a local copy of the cWB libraries: Installing a local copy of the cWB libraries.


    recommended for users willing to use a specific version and/or customize the libraries

  2. The user wants to perform an analysis with the libraries already installed in the LVK computing clusters LVK


    Pre-installed Librares could be outdated and may be changed without any notice. If you need a specific version you have to install a local copy of the cWB library

    The cWB libraries are available in the following computing clusters: CIT and CNAF. The pre-installed libraries can be used by running the cWB configuration file. The environment is set up as follows (assuming bash shell):

    source $HOME_LIBS/GIT/cWB/library/[cit/cnaf]
    cp $HOME_LIBS/GIT/cWB/library/tools/cwb/cwb.rootrc ~/.rootrc

    The $HOME_LIBS path depends on the cluster:

    CIT:  /home/waveburst/SOFT
    CNAF: /opt/exp_software/virgo/virgoDev/waveburst/SOFT
    For the tcsh shell, replace * with *_watenv.csh.