Installing ObjectBox

ObjectBox is a Swift-first iOS database uniquely optimized for high-performance on smartphones. Learn how to set up ObjectBox Swift in your iOS application.

Having problems installing ObjectBox using this guide? Please, let us know where we lost you. Thanks for your help!

Adding ObjectBox DB to your project

We recommend to setup ObjectBox using CocoaPods. Other alternatives are Carthage (experimental) or a manual setup in Xcode. Note that Swift Package Manager does not yet support binary frameworks and thus is not an option yet.

If you are familiar with CocoaPods or Carthage, here's the quick setup (details below):

Carthage (experimental)
  1. Add pod 'ObjectBox' to the Podfile in your Xcode project directory.

  2. Run these two commands in Terminal: pod install --repo-update


  3. Open your .xcworkspace in Xcode.

Carthage (experimental)

Carthage support is experimental and only recommended for experienced users. Note: Carthage may falsely report incompatible Swift 5.1.x versions. This Carthage bug prevents the framework to be installed!

  1. Add github "objectbox/objectbox-swift" to your Cartfile

  2. Run carthage update to download ObjectBox.

  3. Add either Carthage/Build/Mac/ObjectBox.framework or Carthage/Build/iOS/ObjectBox.framework to the appropriate targets of your project

  4. In the "General" build settings tab, locate the "ObjectBox.framework" and sure one of "Embed Without Signing" or "Embed & Sign" is selected.

  5. Run gem install xcodeproj and then run the ObjectBox setup script from Carthage/Build/Mac/OBXCodeGen.framework/setup.rb in your project directory.

Project settings

Because ObjectBox does not include bitcode at this point you need to adjust "Build Settings" in Xcode accordingly. In that tab, ensure "All" is active and search for "bitcode". You will find the "Enable Bitcode" setting which you set to "No".

Otherwise, for some build targets, you will get a build error like this: '.../ObjectBox.framework/ObjectBox' does not contain bitcode. You must rebuild it with bitcode enabled (Xcode setting ENABLE_BITCODE), obtain an updated library from the vendor, or disable bitcode for this target.

Still using Swift 5.0? ObjectBox 1.1 supports Swift 5.1+. If you want to give ObjectBox a try but are stuck with Swift 5.0, use the ObjectBox501 pod. We recommend Swift 5.1 though.

Detailed Instructions


If you don't have CocoaPods already, install it by typing sudo gem install cocoapods in Terminal. If you don't have a Podfile yet, cd into your Xcode project folder and create one using pod init as usual. Now find the # Pods for MyTargetName comment for each target and add the following below it:

pod 'ObjectBox'

Then run:

pod repo update
pod install

The first call will ensure your local copy of the list of available CocoaPods is current, the second call is your usual procedure when adding a new pod to your Podfile that will download the newest release of ObjectBox to your Pods directory and install the pod in your Xcode workspace.

Once you have ObjectBox downloaded, setup.rb will set up the ObjectBox preprocessor in your project for every target with an executable.

You can now open your project's Xcode workspace as usual and follow the rest of this tutorial.


Something doesn't work yet (e.g. pod install fails)? Try updating CocoaPods related things using:

gem update xcodeproj && gem update cocoapods && pod repo update


After a new ObjectBox version is released, you need to get the new pod and run the setup script again:

pod repo update
pod update ObjectBox


If you don't have Carthage yet, install it e.g. using Homebrew brew install carthage. If you do not have a Cartfile yet, create a text file named just Cartfile (no .txt suffix) in your project's folder and write the following text into it

github "objectbox/objectbox-swift"

Then open Terminal, cd into the folder containing your project and run

carthage update
gem install xcodeproj

The first call is the typical way to make Carthage download a dependency specified in your Cartfile. Once you have ObjectBox downloaded, setup.rb will set up the ObjectBox preprocessor in your project for every target with an executable. The gem install xcodeproj line installs a helper tool needed by the setup script.

Carthage has a bug preventing the Swift pre-built framework from working. It falsely reports that Swift 5.1.x versions are incompatible. This will cause the setup to fail! Track this Carthage issue for updates. The error looks like this: Skipped installing objectbox-swift.framework binary due to the error: "Incompatible Swift version - framework was built with 5.1.2 (swiftlang-1100.0.278 clang-1100.0.33.9) and the local version is 5.1 (swiftlang-1100.0.270.13 clang-1100.0.33.7)."

Like for all Carthage projects, you now need to open your project in Xcode and add the framework to your target. You do this by dragging either the Carthage/Build/iOS/ObjectBox.framework or Carthage/Build/Mac/ObjectBox.framework (depending on whether your project is for iOS or macOS) to the "Frameworks, Libraries and Embedded Content" list of the "General" tab of your target's settings. Make sure you choose "Embed and Sign" to its right.

You can now open your project's Xcode workspace as usual and follow the tutorial.

Ignore the OBXCodeGen.framework that you'll also see in Carthage/Build. It is not intended to be linked into your application and only exists to hold the code generator and setup script so you have them while you build.

Secondary targets, e.g. unit tests

If your unit test target does not find the ObjectBox library, please verify that the "Framework Search Paths" build settings of that secondary target are set up. Check the screenshot how to find the setting, and compare the value to the one from your main target. To fix it, press enter and ensure that the following values are present.

For iOS targets:

$(inherited) $(PROJECT_DIR)/Carthage/Build/iOS

For macOS targets:

$(inherited) $(PROJECT_DIR)/Carthage/Build/macOS

Otherwise, you may get errors like this: ld: warning: Could not find or use auto-linked framework 'ObjectBox' Undefined symbols for architecture x86_64: "type metadata accessor for ObjectBox.ToManyProperty" ...


After a new ObjectBox version is released, you need to update via Carthage and run the setup script again:

carthage update