Unbreaking GNU Radio GUI

01.09.2013 21:14

Here's a recipe how to solve a particular problem with GNU Radio. More or less for my own record as I'm pretty sure I'll come across this same problem again on some other machine and it took some time to figure it out.

If suddenly GNU Radio instrumentation using the WX GUI (like FFT and waterfall plots) look all strange and broken like this:

GNU Radio WX GUI without OpenGL

the cause of the problem is that Python OpenGL bindings are not working for some reason. In this case GNU Radio will automatically fall back onto somewhat simpler widgets without any warnings in the console. These backup widgets however seem to be very outdated or downright broken. A lot of buttons and controls are missing and the waterfall plot is completely useless.

Package that needs to be installed on Debian is python-opengl.

After this is corrected, the same WX GUI FFT Sink as above will be shown like this:

GNU Radio WX GUI with OpenGL

You can override auto-detection of a working OpenGL installation by modifying the following part of etc/gnuradio/conf.d/gr-wxgui.conf. This is useful because if you force the style to gl you will actually see the error that is causing the code to fall back to non-GL widgets:

# 'gl', 'nongl', or 'auto'
style = auto
Posted by Tomaž | Categories: Code


THANK YOU!!!! I have seen the old format of which you have a screenshot and have been trying to figure out why. Also, my waterfall plot always was a blue screen. This has been extremely helpful to me! I am using Fedora 20. The command that diud it was "yum install python-opengl"

Posted by Keith Fleming

Thank you Sir,
After reinstalling a few different versions without success, I thought there was something else to it. Thanks a lot!

Posted by Emil Popov

Thank you so much!!

Posted by After so many hours

Awesome! I was worried that i would have to re-install gr :(
How did you find this out?

Posted by Mark

Still great information years later. I ran into this issue with my install of GnuRadio on Arch Linux. I had noticed the FFT graph was different from my Ubuntu system, but didn't know why.


Posted by Shaun

Thank you \o/

Just installed GNU Radio on a new Ubuntu 16.04 VM. Everything seemed fine at first but the FFT block looked weird.

Python-opengl solved the problem.

Thumbs up for you.

Posted by Caveman

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