For using the igraph C library

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The following short example program demonstrates the basic usage of
the **igraph** library.

#include<igraph.h> intmain() { igraph_real_t diameter; igraph_t graph;igraph_rng_seed(igraph_rng_default(), 42);igraph_erdos_renyi_game(&graph, IGRAPH_ERDOS_RENYI_GNM, 1000, 3000, IGRAPH_UNDIRECTED, IGRAPH_NO_LOOPS);igraph_diameter(&graph, &diameter, 0, 0, 0, IGRAPH_UNDIRECTED, 1);printf("Diameter of a random graph with average degree %g: %g\n", 2.0 *igraph_ecount(&graph) /igraph_vcount(&graph), (double) diameter);igraph_destroy(&graph);return0; }

This example illustrates a couple of points. First, programs
using the **igraph** library should include the
`igraph.h`

header
file. Second, **igraph** uses the
igraph_real_t type for real numbers instead of
double. Third, **igraph** graph objects
are represented by the igraph_t data
type. Fourth, the `igraph_erdos_renyi_game()`

creates a graph and `igraph_destroy()`

destroys it, i.e. deallocates the memory associated to it.

For compiling this program you need a C compiler. Optionally, CMake can be used to automate the compilation.

It is convenient to use CMake because it can automatically discover the
necessary compilation flags on all operating systems. Many IDEs support
CMake, and can work with CMake projects directly. To create a CMake project
for this example program, create a file name `CMakeLists.txt`

with the
following contents:

cmake_minimum_required(VERSION 3.16) project(igraph_test C) find_package(igraph REQUIRED) add_executable(igraph_test igraph_test.c) target_link_libraries(igraph_test PUBLIC igraph::igraph)

To compile the project, create a new directory called build, and switch to it:

mkdir build cd build

Run CMake to configure the project:

cmake ..

If igraph was installed at a non-standard location, specify its prefix
using the `-DCMAKE_PREFIX_PATH=...`

option. The prefix must be
the same directory that was specified as the `CMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX`

when compiling igraph.

If configuration has succeeded, build the program using

cmake --build .

On most Unix-like systems, the default C compiler is called **cc**.
To compile the test program, you will need a command similar to the following:

cc igraph_test.c -I/usr/local/include/igraph -L/usr/local/lib -ligraph -o igraph_test

The exact form depends on where **igraph** was installed on your
system, whether it was compiled as a shared or static library, and the external
libraries it was linked to. The directory after the `-I`

switch
is the one containing the `igraph.h`

file, while the one
following `-L`

should contain the library file itself, usually a
file called `libigraph.a`

(static library on macOS and
Linux), `libigraph.so`

(shared library on Linux),
`libigraph.dylib`

(shared library on macOS),
`igraph.lib`

(static library on Windows) or
`igraph.dll`

(shared library on Windows). If
**igraph** was compiled as a static library, it is also
necessary to manually link to all of its dependencies.

If your system has the **pkg-config** utility you are
likely to get the necessary compile options by issuing the command

pkg-config --libs --cflags igraph

(if **igraph** was built as a shared library) or

pkg-config --static --libs --cflags igraph

(if **igraph** was built as a static library).

On most systems, the executable can be run by simply typing its name like this:

./igraph_test

If you use dynamic linking and the **igraph**
library is not in a standard place, you may need to add its location to the
`LD_LIBRARY_PATH`

(Linux), `DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH`

(macOS)
or `PATH`

(Windows) environment variables.

The functions generating graph objects are called graph generators. Stochastic (i.e. randomized) graph generators are called “games”.

**igraph** can handle directed and undirected graphs. Most graph
generators are able to create both types of graphs and most other
functions are usually also capable of handling
both. E.g. `igraph_shortest_paths()`

which (surprisingly) calculates
shortest paths from a vertex to other vertices can calculate
directed or undirected paths.

**igraph** has sophisticated ways for creating graphs. The simplest
graphs are deterministic regular structures like star graphs
(`igraph_star()`

),
ring graphs (`igraph_ring()`

), lattices
(`igraph_lattice()`

) or trees
(`igraph_tree()`

).

The following example creates an undirected regular circular lattice, adds some random edges to it and calculates the average length of shortest paths between all pairs of vertices in the graph before and after adding the random edges. (The message is that some random edges can reduce path lengths a lot.)

#include<igraph.h> intmain() { igraph_t graph; igraph_vector_t dimvector; igraph_vector_t edges; igraph_real_t avg_path_len; int i;igraph_vector_init(&dimvector, 2);VECTOR(dimvector)[0]=30;VECTOR(dimvector)[1]=30;igraph_lattice(&graph, &dimvector, 0, IGRAPH_UNDIRECTED, 0, 1);igraph_average_path_length(&graph, &avg_path_len, NULL, IGRAPH_UNDIRECTED, 1);printf("Average path length (lattice): %g\n", (double) avg_path_len);igraph_rng_seed(igraph_rng_default(), 42);igraph_vector_init(&edges, 20);for(i=0; i <igraph_vector_size(&edges); i++) {VECTOR(edges)[i] =RNG_INTEGER(0,igraph_vcount(&graph) - 1); }igraph_add_edges(&graph, &edges, 0);igraph_average_path_length(&graph, &avg_path_len, NULL, IGRAPH_UNDIRECTED, 1);printf("Average path length (randomized lattice): %g\n", (double) avg_path_len);igraph_vector_destroy(&dimvector);igraph_vector_destroy(&edges);igraph_destroy(&graph);return0; }

This example illustrates some new points. **igraph** uses
igraph_vector_t
instead of plain C arrays. igraph_vector_t is superior to
regular arrays in almost every sense. Vectors are created by the
`igraph_vector_init()`

function and, like graphs, they should be destroyed if not
needed any more by calling
`igraph_vector_destroy()`

on them. A vector can be indexed by the
`VECTOR()`

function
(right now it is a macro). Vectors
can be resized, e.g. most **igraph** functions returning the result in a
vector resize it to the size of the result.

`igraph_lattice()`

takes a vector argument specifying the dimensions of
the lattice. In this example we generate a 30x30 two dimensional
lattice. See the documentation of
`igraph_lattice()`

in
the reference manual for the other arguments.

The vertices in a graph are identified by an integer number between
0 and N-1, N is the number of vertices in the graph (this can be
obtained by
`igraph_vcount()`

,
as in the example).

The `igraph_add_edges()`

function simply takes a graph and a vector of
vertex ids defining the new edges. The first edge is between the first
two vertex ids in the vector, the second edge is between the second
two, etc. This way we add ten random edges to the lattice.

Note that in the example it is possible to add loop edges, edges
pointing to the same vertex and multiple edges, more than one edge
between the same pair of vertices.
igraph_t can of course
represent loops and
multiple edges, although some routines expect simple graphs,
i.e. graphs without loop and multiple edges, because for example some
structural properties are ill-defined for non-simple graphs. Loop
edges can be removed by calling
`igraph_simplify()`

.

In our next example we will calculate various centrality measures in a friendship graph. The friendship graph is from the famous Zachary karate club study. (Web search on 'Zachary karate' if you want to know more about this.) Centrality measures quantify how central is the position of individual vertices in the graph.

#include<igraph.h> intmain() { igraph_t graph; igraph_vector_t v; igraph_vector_t result; igraph_real_t edges[] = { 0, 1, 0, 2, 0, 3, 0, 4, 0, 5, 0, 6, 0, 7, 0, 8, 0,10, 0,11, 0,12, 0,13, 0,17, 0,19, 0,21, 0,31, 1, 2, 1, 3, 1, 7, 1,13, 1,17, 1,19, 1,21, 1,30, 2, 3, 2, 7, 2,27, 2,28, 2,32, 2, 9, 2, 8, 2,13, 3, 7, 3,12, 3,13, 4, 6, 4,10, 5, 6, 5,10, 5,16, 6,16, 8,30, 8,32, 8,33, 9,33,13,33,14,32,14,33, 15,32,15,33,18,32,18,33,19,33,20,32,20,33, 22,32,22,33,23,25,23,27,23,32,23,33,23,29, 24,25,24,27,24,31,25,31,26,29,26,33,27,33, 28,31,28,33,29,32,29,33,30,32,30,33,31,32,31,33, 32,33 };igraph_vector_view(&v, edges,sizeof(edges) /sizeof(double));igraph_create(&graph, &v, 0, IGRAPH_UNDIRECTED);igraph_vector_init(&result, 0);igraph_degree(&graph, &result,igraph_vss_all(), IGRAPH_ALL, IGRAPH_LOOPS);printf("Maximum degree is %10i, vertex %2i.\n", (int)igraph_vector_max(&result), (int)igraph_vector_which_max(&result));igraph_closeness(&graph, &result, NULL, NULL,igraph_vss_all(), IGRAPH_ALL,/*weights=*/NULL,/*normalized=*/0);printf("Maximum closeness is %10g, vertex %2i.\n", (double)igraph_vector_max(&result), (int)igraph_vector_which_max(&result));igraph_betweenness(&graph, &result,igraph_vss_all(), IGRAPH_UNDIRECTED,/*weights=*/NULL);printf("Maximum betweenness is %10g, vertex %2i.\n", (double)igraph_vector_max(&result), (int)igraph_vector_which_max(&result));igraph_vector_destroy(&result);igraph_destroy(&graph);return0; }

This example reflects some new features. First of all, it shows a
way to define a graph simply as defining a C array with its edges.
Function `igraph_vector_view()`

creates a *view* of a C
array. It does not copy any data, this also means that you should not
call `igraph_vector_destroy()`

on a vector created this way. This vector is then used to create the
undirected graph.

Then the degree, closeness and betweenness centrality of the vertices
is calculated and the highest values are printed. Note that the vector
(`result`

) which returns the result from these
functions has to be initialized first, and also that the functions resize
it to be able to hold the result.

The `igraph_vss_all()`

argument tells the functions to
calculate the property for every vertex in the graph, it is shorthand
for a *vertex selector* (igraph_vs_t).
Vertex selectors help to perform operations on a subset of vertices,
you can read more about them in one
of the following chapters.

← Chapter 2. Installation |
Chapter 4. About igraph graphs, the basic interface → |