I have downloaded tar.gz files. But I don't know how to install it. How do I install this kind of file?
The first thing you need to do is extracting it in a folder, let's make it your desktop. You can extract an archive right clicking on it and choosing the appropriate entry. It should create a new folder with a similar name, e.g. program-1.2.3. Now you need to open your terminal and then go to that directory:
Make sure you first read a file called INSTALL or INSTALL.txt or README. Check if there is any of these files with the ls command, and then display the right one with:
The file will contain the right indications to go on with the compiling process. Usually the three "classical" steps are:
You may also need to install some dependencies, generally after some configure error which will tell you what you are missing. You can also use checkinstall instead of make install. See here https://help.ubuntu.com/community/CheckInstall
Remember that your mileage may vary.
You cannot "install" a
Similarly you can extract .tar.bz2 files with
If you would like to see the files being extracted during unpacking, add
Even if you have no Internet connection, you can still use Ubuntu's package management system, just download the
For an easier way to install packages offline, see the question How can I install software offline?.
How you compile a program from a source
Download a package from the software sources or the software center.
If you install a package via the software sources and not downloading the package on your own, you will get new updates to that package and install them via the Update Manager.
You could just install
or by using the software center and searching for
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First things first
It is generally not advised to download and install applications from the internet files. Most applications for Ubuntu are available through the "Ubuntu Software Center" on your system (for example, K3B ). Installing from the Software Center is much more secure, much easier, and will allow the app to get updates from Ubuntu.
That said, how to install
First of all it is important to install the package build-essential, it contains all programs needed to compile on your own.
After reading the INSTALL file as stated above and fulfilling the prerequisites you can do the magic.
It is difficult to answer specifically, as each software may have a different build process, even if they are archived as a TAR/GZ
What I can say for most source codes that I know of is that you will first need to extract the tarball archive into a folder of your choice. Then most source codes rely on the AUTOCONF and MAKE programs, so you will need to use the following commands :
To build your binaries, and then :
To install it in the system.
"./configure" uses the autoconf mechanism to retrieve information on your system, and prepare the build scripts in the source file in order to build the appropriate binaries compatible with your installation. "make" will invode the build itself, that will create the binaries out of the source code. "make install" will then copy the binaries, documentation, configuration file, etc. into the appropriate folders of your system so that the software is available to the users.
It is a very basic explanation, the real answer is : read the documentation provided with the source code... Only there you will know exactly how to build it.
You should always try to install software from repositories whether it's official, a PPA/any other unofficial repository. That way, you'll get all stable release, security and new feature updates while you install other system updates. Another advantage is that you don't need to worry about building, dependencies and harder uninstallation (since the application won't appear in synaptic) with tar files.
For example, you can install mysql by installing mysql-server package.
If you really want to use tar files, the common process is to run (make install may require sudo):
Please note that some of the above commands may not be necessary, please refer to any readme files in the tar file or try to run
Okay, this is a fairly challenging task for a beginner, but just follow my instructions, and it should be fine.
First off, download the .tar.xxx file, and SAVE it. Don't open it. (In these examples, I'll be installing the Dropbox Beta build, because I was going to install it anyway, so I figured that I might as well document the installation.)
After you've downloaded your file, (assuming that you saved it to
NOTE: use the name of whatever file you downloaded. (e.g., for the Firefox Nightly 19.0a1 64-bit build, you would type
Now, change to the
(again, use the name of the downloaded file. Don't forget the extension.)
Okay, check to see what the extracted folder is called:
you'll get something like this:
Okay, in our example, we installed Dropbox, and the only folder there is called
Okay, it's now marked as executable, so it's time to create a symbolic link (this is what allows you to run it from the Terminal):
NOTE: this is
Okay, you're done. The program is now installed and runnable from the Terminal.
This part is fairly simple:
NOTE: If you're installing OVER a previous installation, use
Now, here's where you create the icon. Here's good template; edit it appropriately.
You may want to leave off the MimeType option completely. That could be very bad if you didn't.
Now, click "Save", close it out, and you're in business!
Sorry that tutorial took so long. Thanks for reading!
Files with the extension
You can extract this file with...
This will extract the files from the tarball into the directory you are currently in and should create a new directory there with in that the files from the tarball.
Short explanation on the options:
This is probably not enough though. Depending on what it is it could have a complete compiled setup and you need to cd into the new directory and start an executable. It could also contain the source to a program that you need to confire, make, make install. Generally (ie. I would assume) it should contain a readme that explains what to do next.
Installing software like this will NOT install any dependencies and will complain if you try to install a tarball before you installed these dependencies.
Use a website or the file itself to find out if there are dependencies and install those first. But always always always first try to find a
If you are trying to install the gimp plugins you skipped parts of the installation process mentioned in this link.
and you will also need
Before downloading the files with wget visit the website and see if it has newer versions. These instructions are from the 3rd of May 2012 so they could be old ;)
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