Binary Packages

This section describes what is in the IDAES binary distribution, where it is installed, how to use it, and alternative installation methods. The IDAES binary distribution contains mainly third-party solvers compiled for user convenience and function libraries used for some IDAES physical property packages.

Installation is generally done through the idaes get-extensions command.

What is Included

The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) has obtained a distribution license for HSL linear solvers that allows inclusion in IDAES’s compiled version of Ipopt.

All technical papers, sales and publicity material resulting from use of the HSL codes within IPOPT must contain the following acknowledgement: HSL, a collection of Fortran codes for large-scale scientific computation. See

Main Package


Install Location

The location of the binary file installation is not currently configurable and it can be found with the command line command idaes bin-directory.

Manual Installation

The install location is not configurable, but the installation step can easily be done manually. This is occasionally necessary when, for example, a firewall blocks downloading the binary file from GitHub.

The first step for a manual install is to determine the location of the IDAES binary directory, which can be done with the command idaes bin-directory.

Download the IDAES binary release files from the binary releases page. You will need idaes-lib-{platform}.tar.gz, idaes-solvers-{platform}.tar.gz, and idaes-{optional package}-{platform}.tar.gz. Extract the tar files in the IDAES binary directory.

Using Solvers Without IDAES

Generally, the environment variables are set up to use the IDAES solvers when any idaes module is imported in Python. If you would like to use the solvers in Pyomo without importing IDAES, you will need to add the install location to your executable and dynamic library search path environment variables as appropriate for your operating system (e.g. add the install location to $PATH in Linux).

If you would like to use the IDAES binary distribution with Pyomo and have IDAES installed the simplest way to set the appropriate paths is just to import idaes.

Using the WSL

The Linux binary builds can be run on Windows using the WSL. This is useful when solvers depend on POSIX standards. Currently the optional PETSc solver is the only one which does not run on Windows.

In the WSL environment, download and extract the desired Linux release (e.g. Ubuntu 20.04) of the solver (i.e. PETSc) you would like to run following the instructions under manual installation above. Then install required libraries for your release (see installation instructions here for supported distributions).

In the WSL environment you can check that PETSc is installed correctly. In your desired Linux release navigate to the folder containing the compiled PETSc binary and run the command ./petsc --version. If setup correctly, details of the PETSc release will be printed on the screen.

In the Windows IDAES binary directory, create a batch file with the format {solver}_wsl.bat for example for PETSc petsc_wsl.bat. The location of the IDAES binary directory can be found by running the command idaes bin-directory. Assuming you have put the binary file in $HOME/local/bin and your WSL user name is john, and the distribution installed is Ubuntu-20.04 the contents of the batch file to run the PETSc solver are below:

@echo off
idaes solver-wsl --distribution Ubuntu-20.04 --user john --executable ~/local/bin/petsc %*

If you are unsure of the name of your installed distribution, navigate to your linux release and run the command wsl --list --all. This will list all your linux distributions (if you have more than one) with their names.

There are several options to check that your {solver}_wsl.bat (e.g. petsc_wsl.bat) file is installed correctly. In an Anaconda Prompt window or a Command Prompt window run the command %LOCALAPPDATA%\idaes\bin\petsc_wsl.bat --version. For users of Git Bash, open a Git Bash window and run the command $LOCALAPPDATA/idaes/bin/petsc_wsl.bat --version. While for powershell, open a powershell window and run the command start-process -NoNewWindow -wait $Env:LOCALAPPDATA\idaes\bin\petsc_wsl.bat –version. In all cases, the conda environment where the solver is installed has to be active (i.e. activate it with conda activate <env name>). Details of the solver release version will be printed on the screen if the setup has been completed correctly.

If you want to use user-defined AMPL functions with a WSL solver while running IDAES in the normal Windows environment, you will need to set the AMPLFUNC environment variable in the WSL environment manually. The AMPLFUNC variable is a newline-separated list of paths to shared libraries containing user-defined AMPL functions. The easiest way to handle user-defined functions in this case is to just set AMPLFUNC in your .bashrc file then run the WSL command in interactive mode, with the batch file setup below.

@echo off
idaes solver-wsl --distribution Ubuntu-20.04 --user john --executable bash -ic '~/local/bin/petsc %*'