A Swift wrapper around glib-2.x that is largely auto-generated from gobject-introspection


A Swift wrapper around glib-2.x that is largely auto-generated from gobject-introspection. For up to date (auto-generated) reference documentation, see

macOS Linux DocC

What is new?

  • SwiftGLib 2.73 introduces typed convenience wrappers for GLib collection types such as GArray, GByteArray, GList, GSList, and GSequence.

  • Version 15 of gir2swift provides a Package Manager Plugin. This requires Swift 5.6 or higher (older versions can be used via the swift52 branch).


Swift 5.7 or higher

To build, download Swift from -- if you are using macOS, make sure you have the command line tools installed as well). Test that your compiler works using swift --version, which should give you something like

$ swift --version
swift-driver version: Apple Swift version 5.10 (swiftlang- clang-1500.3.9.4)
Target: arm64-apple-macosx14.0

on macOS, or on Linux you should get something like:

$ swift --version
Swift version 5.10 (swift-5.10-RELEASE)
Target: x86_64-unknown-linux-gnu

GLib 2.56 or higher

These Swift wrappers have been tested with glib-2.56, 2.58, 2.60, 2.62, 2.64, 2.66, 2.68, 2.70, 2.72, 2.73, 2.74, 2.76, 2.78, and 2.80. They should work with higher versions, but YMMV. Also make sure you have gobject-introspection and its .gir files installed.



On Ubuntu 18.04, 20.04, and 22.04 you can use the glib that comes with the distribution. Just install with the apt package manager:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install libglib2.0-dev glib-networking gobject-introspection libgirepository1.0-dev libxml2-dev jq

On Fedora 29, you can use the gtk that comes with the distribution. Just install with the dnf package manager:

sudo dnf install glib2-devel gobject-introspection-devel libxml2-devel jq


On macOS, you can install glib using HomeBrew (for setup instructions, see

brew update
brew install glib glib-networking gobject-introspection pkg-config jq


Normally, you don't build this package directly (but for testing you can - see 'Building' below). Instead you need to embed SwiftGLib into your own project using the Swift Package Manager. After installing the prerequisites (see 'Prerequisites' below), add SwiftGLib as a dependency to your Package.swift file, e.g.:

// swift-tools-version:5.7

import PackageDescription

let package = Package(name: "MyPackage",
    dependencies: [
        .package(url: "", branch: "main"),
        .package(url: "", branch: "main"),
    targets: [
        .target(name: "MyPackage",
                dependencies: [
                    .product(name: "GLib", package: "SwiftGLib")


Normally, you don't build this package directly, but you embed it into your own project (see 'Usage' above). However, you can build and test this module separately to ensure that everything works. Make sure you have all the prerequisites installed (see above). After that, you can simply clone this repository and build the command line executable (be patient, this will download all the required dependencies and take a while to compile) using

git clone
cd SwiftGLib
swift build
swift test


You can generate documentation using the DocC plugin. To preview documentation matching your local installation, simply run

swift package --disable-sandbox preview-documentation

then navigate to the URL shown for the local preview server. Make sure you have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Alternatively, you can create static documentation using jazzy. Make sure you have sourcekitten and jazzy installed, e.g. on macOS (x86_64):

brew install ruby sourcekitten
/usr/local/opt/ruby/bin/gem install jazzy


Here are some common errors you might encounter and how to fix them.

Missing .gir Files

If you get an error such as

Girs located at
Cannot open '/GLib-2.0.gir': No such file or directory

Make sure that you have the relevant gobject-introspection packages installed (as per the Pre-requisites section), including their .gir and .pc files.

Old Swift toolchain or Xcode

If, when you run swift build, you get a Segmentation fault (core dumped) or circular dependency error such as

warning: circular dependency detected while parsing pangocairo: harfbuzz -> freetype2 -> harfbuzz

this probably means that your Swift toolchain is too old, particularly on Linux. Make sure the latest toolchain is the one that is found when you run the Swift compiler (see above).

If you get an older version, make sure that the right version of the swift compiler is found first in your PATH. On macOS, use xcode-select to select and install the latest version, e.g.:

sudo xcode-select -s /Applications/
xcode-select --install


  • Swift Tools 5.7.0
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Last updated: Sat Jun 22 2024 07:40:47 GMT-0900 (Hawaii-Aleutian Daylight Time)