Windows build

The build process can be quite long and tedious. The F.A.Q. page offers solution for the most common complications. Alternatively, use the CARLA forum to post any unexpected issues that may occur.

Windows build command summary

Show command lines to build on Windows
To execute the make commands below, you must use the Visual Studio 2017 native console x64 with administrator rights, otherwise you may be getting permission errors. !!! Important To execute the ```make``` commands below, you **must** use the Visual Studio 2017 native console x64 **with** administrator rights, otherwise you may be getting permission errors.
# Make sure to meet the minimum requirements

# Necessary software: 
#   CMake
#   Git
#   Make
#   Python3 x64
#   Unreal Engine 4.24
#   Visual Studio 2017 with Windows 8.1 SDK and x64 Visual C++ Toolset

# Set environment variables for the software

# Clone the CARLA repository
git clone

# make the CARLA client and the CARLA server
make PythonAPI
make launch

# Press play in the Editor to initialize the server
# Run example scripts to test CARLA
# Terminal A 
cd PythonAPI/examples
# Terminal B
cd PythonAPI/examples
# The PythonAPI will be built based on the installed Python version
# The docs will use Python3, as support for  Python2 was provided until 0.9.10 (not included)


System specifics

  • x64 system. The simulator should run in any 64 bits Windows system.
  • 30GB disk space. Installing all the software needed and CARLA will require quite a lot of space. Make sure to have around 30/50GB of free disk space.
  • An adequate GPU. CARLA aims for realistic simulations, so the server needs at least a 4GB GPU. A dedicated GPU is highly recommended for machine learning.
  • Two TCP ports and good internet connection. 2000 and 2001 by default. Be sure neither the firewall nor any other application are blocking these.

Necessary software

Minor installations

  • CMake generates standard build files from simple configuration files.
  • Git is a version control system to manage CARLA repositories.
  • Make generates the executables.
  • Python3 x64 is the main script language in CARLA. Having a x32 version installed may cause conflict, so it is highly advisable to have it uninstalled.


Be sure that these programs are added to the environment path. Remember that the path added leads to the bin directory.

Visual Studio 2017

Get the 2017 version from here. Community is the free version. Use the Visual Studio Installer to install two additional elements.

  • Windows 8.1 SDK. Select it in the Installation details section on the right.
  • x64 Visual C++ Toolset. In the Workloads section, choose Desktop development with C++. This will enable a x64 command prompt that will be used for the build. Check it up by pressing the Win button and searching for x64. Be careful to not open a x86_x64 prompt.


Other Visual Studio versions may cause conflict. Even if these have been uninstalled, some registers may persist. To completely clean Visual Studio from the computer, go to Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio\Installer\resources\app\layout and run .\InstallCleanup.exe -full

Unreal Engine

Go to Unreal Engine and download the Epic Games Launcher. In Engine versions/Library, download Unreal Engine 4.24.x. Make sure to run it in order to check that everything was properly installed.


Having VS2017 and UE4.24 installed, a Generate Visual Studio project files option should appear when doing right-click on .uproject files. If this is not available, something went wrong whith the UE4.24 installation. Create a UE project to check it out and reinstall if necessary.

CARLA build


Lots of things have happened so far. It is highly advisable to restart the computer.

Clone repository

The official repository of the project. Either download and extract it or clone it using the following command line in a x64 terminal.

git clone

Now the latest content for the project, known as master branch in the repository, has been copied in local.


The master branch contains the latest fixes and features. Stable code is inside the stable and previous CARLA versions have their own branch. Always remember to check the current branch in git with the command git branch.

Get assets

Only the assets package is yet to be downloaded. \Util\ContentVersions.txt contains the links to the assets for CARLA releases. These must be extracted in Unreal\CarlaUE4\Content\Carla. If the path doesn't exist, create it.

Download the latest assets to work with the current version of CARLA.

Set the environment variable

This is necessary for CARLA to find the Unreal Engine installation folder. By doing so, users can choose which specific version of Unreal Engine is to be used. If no environment variable is specified, the CARLA will look up in the directories and use the last version in search order.

1. Open the Windows Control Panel and go to Advanced System Settings.
2. On the Advanced panel open Environment Variables....
3. Click New... to create the variable.
4. Name the variable as UE4_ROOT and choose the path to the installation folder of the desire UE4 installation.

make CARLA

The last step is to finally build CARLA. There are different make commands to build the different modules. All of them run in the root CARLA folder.


Make sure to run make PythonAPI to prepare the client and make launch for the server. Alternatively make LibCarla will prepare the CARLA library to be imported anywhere.

  • make PythonAPI compiles the API client, necessary to grant control over the simulation. It is only needed the first time. Remember to run it again when updating CARLA. Scripts will be able to run after this command is executed.
make PythonAPI
  • make launch compiles the server simulator and launches Unreal Engine. Press Play to start the spectator view and close the editor window to exit. Camera can be moved with WASD keys and rotated by clicking the scene while moving the mouse around.
make launch

The project may ask to build other instances such as UE4Editor-Carla.dll the first time. Agree in order to open the project. During the first launch, the editor may show warnings regarding shaders and mesh distance fields. These take some time to be loaded and the city will not show properly until then.

Finally, let's test the simulator. Inside PythonAPI/examples and PythonAPI/util there are some example scripts that may be especially useful for starters. The following commands will spawn some life into the town, and create a weather cycle. Each script should be run in one terminal

# Terminal A 
cd PythonAPI/examples
# Terminal B
cd PythonAPI/examples
# The PythonAPI will be built based on the installed Python version
# The docs will use Python3, as support for  Python2 was provided until 0.9.10 (not included)


If the simulation is running at very low FPS rates, go to Edit/Editor preferences/Performance in the UE editor and disable Use less CPU when in background.

Now CARLA is ready to go. Here is a brief summary of the most useful make commands available.

Command Description
make help Prints all available commands.
make launch Launches CARLA server in Editor window.
make PythonAPI Builds the CARLA client.
make package Builds CARLA and creates a packaged version for distribution.
make clean Deletes all the binaries and temporals generated by the build system.
make rebuild make clean and make launch both in one command.

Read the F.A.Q. page or post in the CARLA forum for any issues regarding this guide.

Some recommendations after finishing the build. Learn how to update the CARLA build or take your first steps in the simulation, and learn some core concepts.