Monday, March 7, 2011

Tip for developing a liblas C++ program with Microsoft Visual Studio 2008

Recently I tried to write a C++ program for reading a LiDAR LAS file using Microsoft Visual Studio and the open source library liblas. I followed the sample tutorial from the web site. The simple code below simply opens up a LAS file and creates a LASReader class. Compiling the simple code is okay but when I ran it, the program crashed when trying to create the LASReader class. What was the problem?
 // liblas  
 #include <liblas/liblas.hpp>  
 #include <liblas/laspoint.hpp>  
 #include <liblas/lasreader.hpp>  
 #include <liblas/cstdint.hpp>  
 #include <fstream>  
 #include <iostream>  
 #include <string>  
 int main(int argc, char* argv[])  
   std::ifstream ifs; "c:\\temp\\input.las", std::ios::in | std::ios::binary);   
   liblas::LASReader reader(ifs);  
The source code is simple enough and the syntax is correct. After some research I found out that the liblas.lib file I was linking was a released (non-debug) version while I was compiling a debug version of my C++ executable. Due to licensing issues, libLAS can only be distributed in released version. If you want to compile a debug executable, then you have to download the liblas source code and compile your own debug liblas.lib. Otherwise, you can only build release copies of your executable.


stephie said...

can I ask you how to get the liblas.lab? I build the liblas in visual studion 2010 but there's no .lib file?
In addition, how you cen set new project to link to liblas?
Thank you. I am a newbie in this.

d0min0c said...

You can download the latest liblas.lib for Windows using the OSGeo4W installer from
I have not tried VS2010 but there should be some project settings there to add in the liblas include header files and library directories, e.g. [OSGeo4W]\include\liblas and [OSgeo4W]\lib

Sarah K said...

Very interesting and informative post! This information is really helpful for us. Thanks for sharing.
microsoft visual studio 2010

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