For those who are new to Github

Github is a platform for software development, used by VCV Rack and by many Rack plugins. Using Github is often the most effective way to report bugs -or request new features- to plugin developers. This way, you can help to improve Rack and Rack plugins.

Short and clear instructions about how to report bugs, request features, for both VCV Rack and 3rd-party Rack plugins are available here:

If still something is not clear when using Github, please post a comment below. Also share your experience or tips if you think it can help other users.


  • “Issue” on Github means a single, definite problem and sometimes a discussion about it
  • An “issue page” looks a bit like a forum page. The “thumb-up” emoji can actually be a way to support a proposal
  • Always search the issue tracker first. You don’t even need to create a Github account for that
  • Remember that some plugins are not hosted on Github: for those, use the contact information available in the VCV Library
  • Make sure you’re able to provide developers with your log.txt file if needed. You’ll find it in the Rack user folder
  • Don’t forget to read the request for help to report common issues to Rack plugin developers posted by the main developer of Rack

[work in progress. Any feedback and tips from developers welcome but please remember this post is for beginners, not for people who already familiar with Github. It needs to be concise and simple]


So is the idea that this is in addition to or instead of asking in the VCV Community forum? I would have thought this a good place for issue visibility especially if developers are only developing modules for the rack.

Hey @main.tenant - please keep discussing plugins in #plugins

This post is a spontaneous (maybe bad) idea I just had and it’s only meant to help someone who’s completely new to Github to use Github. Let’s see how it goes

Sounds good, will be interested to see. I’ve been trying to use github to load other people’s source code and it’s not as straightforward as I’d hoped it to be.

actually there are some pretty good guides to github on github

Sure, but we can’t point absolute beginners at that page - they’d just close the tab. I’d like to keep the first post as short as possible. Let’s list the 2 or 3 things a beginner may want to do on Github, let’s write a couple of short sentences for each activity and maybe add some context about Rack.

As someone who’s not a developer but sometimes wants to help, I feel you :slight_smile:

Would you say it was the user interface? or the terminology (I wonder - would a beginner understand “Fork” or “Pull request” without explanations? I’m not English mother tongue so I can’t say…) - or what?

I’ve edited the first post. What would you add?

Yes, all that although I admit most of my issue with trying to work on the VCV Rack or module code is being completely unfamiliar with a combination of things - github, the particular c++ compiler and make and build routines and then how to test stuff and distribute it is all a big step into the unknown even though I’m a developer who began programming 40 years ago with a Christmas gift of a Sinclair ZX80 and right now I do back end integration coding on local government servers mostly in C# and jquery and a whole load of nasty flavours of XML/XSLT.

This may be kind of off topic, but am I wrong to think there is some way I could use Visual Studio 2019 to work on the VCV code?

first of all, using git just to pull down other’s code is trivial git clone <their code>. Now a ton of git things are very difficult (imho), but not that.

Yes, it is possible to use Visual Studio, but it’s not as easy as using the supported tools. My setup is probably the most common - I edit with visual studio code. I build with msys2/gcc/gnu make. You don’t need to learn too much to do that. you need to learn a lot about vcv, c++, dsp, real-time programming. But you don’t need to know too much about the tools.

Yes it’s probably just me stubbornly trying to stick as close as possible to my normal modus operandi. I’ve got some c++ knowledge from back in the MFC days and the DSP side of things doesn’t scare me too much because I only initially want to attempt to build modules that are the CV equivalent of MIDI effects, variations on arpeggiators and the like.

1 Like

so go for it! typical VCV modules are pretty small - one cpp file! you can later figure out how to hook up your favorite tools and such, but in the short term just go with the easy stuff and it won’t be so bad.

1 Like

I’ll definitely give it a go.