Crate gtk

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Rust GTK 3 bindings

Project site

Rust bindings and wrappers for GTK 3, part of gtk3-rs, a multi-platform GUI toolkit. It is a part of gtk-rs.

GTK 3.18 is the lowest supported version for the underlying library.

Minimum supported Rust version

Currently, the minimum supported Rust version is 1.56.0.


gtk expects GTK, GLib and Cairo development files to be installed on your system. See the GTK installation page.


We recommend using crates from, as demonstrated here.

If you want to track the bleeding edge, use the git dependency instead:

gtk = { git = "" }

Avoid mixing versioned and git crates like this:

gtk = "0.13"
gtk = { git = "" }

“Hello, World!” example program

//! GTK needs to be initialized before use by calling init. Creating an Application will call init for you.

use gtk::prelude::*;
use gtk::{Application, ApplicationWindow};

fn main() {
    let app = Application::builder()

    app.connect_activate(|app| {
        // We create the main window.
        let win = ApplicationWindow::builder()
            .title("Hello, World!")

        // Don't forget to make all widgets visible.

The main loop

In a typical GTK application you set up the UI, assign signal handlers and run the main event loop.

use gtk::prelude::*;
use gtk::{Application, ApplicationWindow, Button};

fn main() {
    let application = Application::builder()

    application.connect_activate(|app| {
        let window = ApplicationWindow::builder()
            .title("First GTK Program")

        let button = Button::with_label("Click me!");
        button.connect_clicked(|_| {



GTK is not thread-safe. Accordingly, none of this crate’s structs implement Send or Sync.

The thread where init was called is considered the main thread. OS X has its own notion of the main thread and init must be called on that thread. After successful initialization, calling any gtk or gdk functions (including init) from other threads will panic.

Any thread can schedule a closure to be run by the main loop on the main thread via glib::idle_add or glib::timeout_add. While working with GTK you might need the glib::idle_add_local or glib::timeout_add_local version without the Send bound. Those may only be called from the main thread.


The gtk and gdk crates have some run-time safety and contract checks.

  • Any constructor or free function will panic if called before init or on a non-main thread.

  • Any &str or &Path parameter with an interior null (\0) character will cause a panic.

  • Some functions will panic if supplied out-of-range integer parameters. All such cases will be documented individually but they are not yet.

  • A panic in a closure that handles signals or in any other closure passed to a gtk function will abort the process.


Library versions

By default this crate provides only GTK 3.18 APIs. You can access additional functionality by selecting one of the v3_20, v3_24, etc. features.

Cargo.toml example:

version = "0.x.y"
features = ["v3_20"]

Take care when choosing the version to target: some of your users might not have easy access to the latest ones. The higher the version, the fewer users will have it installed.


Most of this documentation is generated from the C API.

Until all parts of the documentation have been reviewed there will be incongruities with the actual Rust API.

Generate the docs:

> cargo doc --features dox

(if the installed GTK+ version is lower than 3.16, adjust the feature name accordingly).


Contributor you’re welcome!

See the general bindings documentation.

Most of the bindings (src/auto) are generated by gir using this configuration file. After editing Gir.toml the sources can be regenerated with

> make gir

When opening a PR please put the changes to the src/auto directory in a separate commit.

You may also wish to run cargo clippy -- -D warnings and check that you’re clean because otherwise you may be surprised when CI fails.

See Also

But also:


gtk is available under the MIT License, please refer to it.


pub use ffi;
pub use atk;
pub use cairo;
pub use gdk;
pub use gdk_pixbuf;
pub use gio;
pub use glib;
pub use pango;


Builder pattern types.

Traits and essential types intended for blanket imports.


Whether to propagate the signal to the default handler.






Tries to initialize GTK+.

Returns true if GTK has been initialized.

Returns true if GTK has been initialized and this is the main thread.

Informs this crate that GTK has been initialized and the current thread is the main one.