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If you want to develop qt applications in nixos you have to use nix-shell or direnv. For using nix-shell just run this command in the terminal:

nix-shell -p qt5Full -p qtcreator --run qtcreator

Tip: if it finds no Qt Kits, rm -rf ~/.config/QtProject* and start again.

For using direnv, create a shell.nix file in the root of your project and paste these lines into it:

# shell.nix
{ pkgs ? import <nixpkgs> {} }:
  pkgs.mkShell {
    buildInputs = [

Tip: if you want use clang-format, add clang-format to buildinputs list.

Also create .envrc file and paste: use_nix into it.

Happy qt coding :)


Cannot mix incompatible Qt library (version 0x_____) with this library (version 0x_____)

This is a known issue, see Issue.png#30551 for the current status.

Starting with the 19.09 release, the issue should be fixed by Issue.png#65526

This application failed to start because it could not find or load the Qt platform plugin ??? in ""


Qt4 depends on the environment variable QT_PLUGIN_PATH to find plugins. It is normally already

present in the environment on NixOS at least, but for example systemd user units are launched in a pretty empty environment. A solution is to use the command
systemctl --user import-environment QT_PLUGIN_PATH
from a sane environment. For example add it to the services.xserver.displayManager.sessionCommands option.


Warning: This recommendation is deprecated for 19.09 and up, see Issue.png#65399. Failing packages should be updated to use wrapQtAppsHook.

Qt5 seems (?) to look for plugins in the PATH. This will fail from a systemd user unit for example, because their path is nearly empty by default. As an example, here is a workaround to have usbguard-applet launched from a systemd user unit:

  systemd.user.services.usbguard-applet = {
    description = "USBGuard applet";
    partOf = [ "graphical-session.target" ];
    wantedBy = [ "graphical-session.target" ];
    path = [ "/run/current-system/sw/" ]; ### Fix empty PATH to find qt plugins
    serviceConfig = {
      ExecStart = "${pkgs.usbguard}/bin/usbguard-applet-qt";

qt.qpa.plugin: Could not find the Qt platform plugin "xcb" in ""

Here is a concrete example:

qt.qpa.plugin: Could not find the Qt platform plugin "xcb" in ""
This application failed to start because no Qt platform plugin could be initialized. Reinstalling the application may fix this problem.

The package will need to be fixed to use [the new https://github.com/NixOS/nixpkgs/issues/65399 wrapQtAppsHook]. The hook wraps every qt application with adding QT_PLUGIN_PATH and XDG_DATA_DIRS as well as XDG_CONFIG_DIRS.See wrap-qt-hook.sh in nixpkgs

Debugging methods

As a general rule, exporting QT_DEBUG_PLUGINS=1 make qt print where it looks for plugins.

If a plugin exists in a directory but is ignored with a message like QLibraryPrivate::loadPlugin failed on "/nix/store/...-teamspeak-client-3.1.6/lib/teamspeak/platforms/libqxcb.so" : "Cannot load library /nix/store/...-client-3.1.6/lib/teamspeak/platforms/libqxcb.so: " it can be that the library cannot be dlopen()ed because of dependencies/rpath issues and needs patchelfing. Exporting LD_DEBUG=libs may prove helpful in this scenario.