• 2020
  • 12/16/2019
  • Public Content

Get Started with Intel® Parallel Studio XE 2020

Software development is an iterative process. Start designing your application, and let Intel® software help you build, analyze, and scale that application. Intel® Parallel Studio XE is a full tool suite for compiling applications and optimizing performance with less effort. The tools in your Intel® Parallel Studio XE suite help you develop faster code, faster.
The tools and libraries in each Intel® Parallel Studio XE suite were developed to make the most out of each phase in this process, and grouped together to meet all of your software development needs during that phase. Once the first round of development is complete, continue the process as often as needed to keep your application up-to-date and optimized.

What's in the Box

Composer Edition
provides C++ and/or Fortran compilers, performance libraries, and parallel models to help you build fast code.
Professional Edition
provides the tools in the Composer Edition plus analysis tools to assist you in adding parallelism, debugging, and tuning your application.
Cluster Edition
contains all the tools in the previous two editions plus MPI cluster tools including a standards based MPI Library, MPI communications profiling and analysis tool, MPI error checking and tuning tools and cluster checker.
The tools included in each suite are outlined below. Find more information about the tools, including installation guides, get started guides, and release notes, by following the links provided.


  • Composer Edition
  • Professional Edition
  • Cluster Edition
The Intel® C and Intel® Fortran optimizing compilers create fast code for modern processors. They use the latest instruction sets, auto-vectorize code for supporting/utilizing wider vector registers, and use highly-tuned parallel models like OpenMP*, and Intel® TBB. The compilers offer broad support for the latest C, C++, and Fortran standards.
GDB for debugging applications natively on Intel® 64 Architecture systems.
Supercharge applications and speed up core computational packages with this performance-oriented distribution for Python*. This distribution addresses fundamental Python* performance challenges; delivering the speed of compiled languages with full optimization for a wide range of processors and coprocessors from Intel.
Intel® Math Kernel Library (Intel® MKL) provides accelerated math processing and neural network routines that increase application performance and reduce development time. Intel® MKL includes highly vectorized and threaded linear algebra, fast Fourier transform (FFT), neural network, vector math, and statistics routines.
C++, Java* and Python** API library of optimized analytics building blocks for all data analysis stages, from data acquisition to data mining and machine learning. Essential for engineering high performance Big Data applications.
A C and C++ template library for creating high performance, scalable parallel applications.
Intel® TBB is installed with Parallel STL, an implementation of the C++ standard library algorithms with support for execution policies. For more information, see Get Started with Parallel STL
Pre-optimized building blocks with computationally intensive functions to help with large dataset problem processing and high-performance computing.
Provides a broad range of secure and efficient cryptographic algorithm implementations.


  • Professional Edition
  • Cluster Edition
Vectorization optimization and thread prototyping. Use this tool in the vectorization and threading stages of the flow.
Memory and thread debugger. Use this tool to find races, deadlocks, and illegal memory accesses.
Performance profiler. Use this tool in the threading and bandwidth optimization stages and for advanced vectorization optimization.


  • Cluster Edition
High-performance MPI library.
MPI communications performance profiler and correctness checker. Use this tool in the MPI tuning stage
Verification of your system’s configuration, performance, and Intel® Scalable System Framework architecture specification compliance.

Before You Begin

Intel® Parallel Studio XE 2020 does not provide an integrated development environment (IDE) to use for accessing the tools. You can access the libraries and tools in your suite using one of the two ways outlined in Step 2 below.

Step 1: Initialize the Tools

To access the standalone or command line versions of the tools, you must first initialize the tools. You can initialize all tools in one step using the initialization utility provided with Intel® Parallel Studio XE 2020.
On Windows*:
  1. From a command prompt or script,
    <install_dir>\IntelSWTools\parallel_studio_xe_2020.<update number>.<package number>\bin
    By default,
    C:\Program Files (x86)
    , or
    C:\Program Files
  2. Run
    psxevars.bat <arch>
    is one of the following architecture arguments:
    • intel64
      : Setup for Intel® 64 host and target
    • ia32
      : Setup for Intel® 64 host and IA-32 target
On Linux:
  1. From a command prompt or script,
    <install_dir>/parallel_studio_xe_2020.<update number>.<package number>\bin
    By default,
    • For root installations:
    • For non-root installations:
  2. Enter
    source psxevars.sh
    source psxevars.csh
On macOS:
  1. From a terminal session, run:
    source <install_dir>/bin/compilervars.sh intel64
    is the directory structure containing the compiler
    The default path for
  2. Invoke the compiler from the command line, using a command similar to the following:
    For C source files:
    icc my_source_file.c
    For C++ source files:
    icpc my_source_file.cpp
    For Fortran source files:
    ifort my_source_file.f90
    Following successful compilation, the compiler creates an executable file in the current directory.

Step 2A: Access the Tools Using a Third-Party IDE

While Intel® Parallel Studio XE does not provide a built-in IDE, it does integrate with third-party IDEs on Windows, Linux, and macOS to provide a seamless GUI experience for software development.
You can access the entire suite using Microsoft Visual Studio* on Windows, Eclipse* on Linux, and Xcode* on macOS. Once Parallel Studio is installed, the tools are integrated into the menus, and provide toolbars. More information on using a third-party IDE with each tool can be found in the tool-specific get started guides.

Step 2B: Access the Tools Using the Command Line

Use the command line to access the tools in your suite in one of two ways:
  • Navigate to the installed Intel® Parallel Studio XE environment on your host system, then open a command prompt in the tool's location.
  • Open any available command prompt on your host system, and use the command line to change directories and navigate to the installed environment.
Following successful installation, the tools and libraries of your Intel® Parallel Studio XE suite can be found in the following default folders:
  • Windows:
    C:\Program Files (x86)\IntelSWTools
  • Linux:
  • macOS:
Refer to the Intel® Parallel Studio XE Installation Guide for Windows or the Intel® Parallel Studio XE Installation Guide for Linux for a list of default installation locations for each tool. The Linux install locations are identical to the macOS locations. Once you open a command prompt in the correct location for the tool you wish to use, the get started guide for that tool will provide more information on initializing and invoking it using the command line.

Find More

The online training site is an excellent resource for learning Parallel Studio XE basics with webinars, videos, tool-specific training, and tutorials.
The Release Notes contain the most up-to-date information about the product, including system requirements, product description, technical support, and known limitations and issues.
The Installation Guide contains basic installation instructions for Parallel Studio XE and post-installation configuration instructions for the various drivers and collectors.
The Installation Guide contains basic installation instructions for Parallel Studio XE and post-installation configuration instructions for the various drivers and collectors.
Site with samples for Intel® software tools. Filter based on the tools you have installed to see the available samples.
Documentation Folder
Folder on your host system with documentation for the Intel Parallel Studio XE tools. Review the subfolders to see all available documentation for the installed tools.
This folder can be found in
on Linux and macOS, or
on Windows.
This is the online documentation library for Intel software products.
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Product and Performance Information


Intel's compilers may or may not optimize to the same degree for non-Intel microprocessors for optimizations that are not unique to Intel microprocessors. These optimizations include SSE2, SSE3, and SSSE3 instruction sets and other optimizations. Intel does not guarantee the availability, functionality, or effectiveness of any optimization on microprocessors not manufactured by Intel. Microprocessor-dependent optimizations in this product are intended for use with Intel microprocessors. Certain optimizations not specific to Intel microarchitecture are reserved for Intel microprocessors. Please refer to the applicable product User and Reference Guides for more information regarding the specific instruction sets covered by this notice.

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