FLTK is an open source, totally free and cross-platform collection of libraries and utilities implemented in C++ and designed from the offset to be used for designing and building GUI (Graphical User Interface) front-ends for a wide variety of software projects. Even though some application developers use FLTK to create graphical user interfaces for their project, most of them prefer to use the modern, flexible and powerful GTK+ and Qt GUI toolkits.
Features at a glance
The project offers modern and bloat-less GUI functionality, built-in GLUT emulation, and support for 3D graphics through the OpenGL library. It produces graphical users interfaces that are fully compatible with UNIX/Linux (X11), Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X operating systems.
FLTK is pronounced fulltick and has been crafted to be modular and small, so it can be statically linked. However, the program also works well as a shared library. In addition, the toolkit includes a complete and powerful UI (User Interface) builder called FLUID, which can be used to easily create graphical applications based on FLTK.
Getting started with FLTK
At the moment, the FLTK software is distributed only as a universal sources archive in the TAR file format, which means that you will have to compile it in order to install it on your GNU/Linux systems. Therefore, if you’re not familiar with this process, we strongly recommend you to open your graphical package manager, search and install the ‘fltk’ package (all of its dependencies will also be automatically installed using this method).
In case the FLTK package is not available in the main software repositories of your GNU/Linux distribution, you must download the latest version of the project from Softpedia, save the archive somewhere on your computer, unpack it using your favorite archive manager, and open a terminal emulator.
In the Linux Terminal app, navigate to the location of the location of the extracted archive files using the ‘cd’ command and execute the ./configure && make’ command to optimize/configure and compile FLTK for your hardware architecture/operating system. Install it system wide by running the ‘sudo make install’ command as a privileged user or the ‘make install’ command as root.