Version 10 (modified by, 15 years ago) (diff)


Building the Gdk port

The Gdk port of WebKit is intended to provide a browser component primarily for users of the portable Gtk+ UI toolkit on platforms like Linux.

Status of the port

The port is not fully-maintained, but contributors often provide changes to keep it in sync with the rest of WebKit. This means that it may not always be in a state where it builds, and even if it builds, it may not be in a working state. The goal is to change this and make it an actively maintained port.

Developers interested in using or contributing to the Gdk port should be willing to get their hands dirty at this stage. Patches are welcomed on the bug tracker and help is readily available on the IRC channel and mailing list for developers who want to learn the ropes.


The code should be easily built on any Linux distribution which has development packages for Gtk+ installed. Packages you might need to install (in addition to an "ordinary build environment"):

  • libicu-dev
  • gperf
  • libxslt-dev

Using Qmake4

The Gdk port has made a compromise on its build system by incurring a dependency on qmake 4, the Qt toolkit build system. This is only a build-time dependency -- the compiled executables will of course continue to have no requirement of Qt. The decision was made to share resources with the Qt porting team and has been largely successful -- the Gdk port is more likely now than ever to be in a building state straight out of SVN while the port developers have more free time to write code instead of maintaining the old Bakefile build system.

To start the build, ensure that you have qmake4 installed and run:

WebKit/WebKitTools/Scripts$ ./build-webkit --gdk

This will build both the library and the GdkLauncher demo in WebKit/WebKitBuild


Code layout

The main components of the port:

Gtk+/Gdk platform: WebCore/platform/gdk

curl backend: WebCore/platform/network/gdk

cairo graphics backend: WebCore/platform/graphics/cairo

There are other gdk-port related directories which have yet to be listed here.

Current tasks (May '07)

  • Make things work with debugging enabled (when NDEBUG is removed, assertions are triggered right now)
  • Fix animated GIF images
  • Implement more of GraphicsContextCairo.cpp
  • Use system-provided libpng/libjpeg and encourage the removal of cairo, png and jpeg sources from the SVN tree
  • Fix the curl backend
  • Remove "gdk" naming from the curl backend. Other ports have expressed interest in using it.
  • Review the "reentrancy" patch for the curl backend that did not get merged due to style issues(?)
  • Start to make decisions on how scrolling can be properly integrated
  • Look into supporting SVG (is the code in the SVG/Cairo support patch still relevant?)
  • Look into supporting the canvas
  • Attempt to merge the Cairo code in the Win32 port -- the equivalent code is copy-and-pasted into the "Gdk" port in some places. This will help reduce code duplication but also help towards getting WebKit/Gdk/Gtk+ working on Windows
  • Implement more stubs
  • Investigate more convenient development workflows using git