Basically, I failed to trying to implement individual global MINLP solvers (alphaBB, ANTIGONE, BARON, Couenne, LindoAPI, and SCIP) in C++/Xcode/Mac system. On the other hand, I realize that GAMS already integrate a lot of solvers. So I am thinking of using C++/Xcode/Mac system to construct models and let GAMS solve that. What would be the standard practice in this respect? Thank you.


Standard practice tends to be one of:

  • formulate the model in GAMS and solve it in GAMS
  • formulate the model in C++ and solve it in C++

In either case, you can read data from a text file and use it to populate your model instead of hard-coding inputs.

GAMS does have a C++ API. At one point, I've used it, and based on that experience, I wouldn't recommend it, simply because mixed-language programming tends to be challenging to maintain. Nevertheless, if you wanted to generate data in C++, and then use the GAMS API to import that data into GAMS, you could do that as well.

Some of the solvers you cite are not available from C++. For instance, BARON interfaces with GAMS and MATLAB, but does not have a callable C++ interface. ANTIGONE also has a GAMS interface, but no publicly available C++ interface. (Perhaps you have a version directly from the authors?) alphaBB is an algorithm for solving MINLPs, but I don't know of software called alphaBB that solves MINLPs.

I don't have any experience using Xcode as an IDE for software development, but at minimum, you should be able to get Couenne and SCIP to work on a Mac by compiling them and linking your software appropriately. If you are having trouble with this step, I'd recommend decoupling data generation and MINLP model formulation. Generate the data using a C++ program, and then read the data in GAMS and formulate your MINLP in GAMS, then call GAMS to solve your model.

  • $\begingroup$ This is very very helpful. Thank you very much. "Generate the data using a C++ program", do you mean using GAMS c++ API? OR shall I recode everything, which seems to be reinventing the wheel. $\endgroup$ – user40780 Feb 6 '15 at 16:05
  • $\begingroup$ @user40780: I mean, if you're using C++, avoid the GAMS API. Write the output of your C++ program to a file. Use GAMS to read in that output file. $\endgroup$ – Geoff Oxberry Feb 6 '15 at 18:49

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