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I would like to install a 32-bit deb package on AMD64. It is not anything system critical, would it cause problems? Is there a better way to install?

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Which package you are trying to install? – lovinglinux Oct 17 '10 at 5:41
I am probably going to have to use make-dpkg and compile it myself. :( – NightwishFan Oct 18 '10 at 4:55
up vote 6 down vote accepted

You could do it with

sudo dpkg -i --force-all [package.deb]

After that you can install needed dependencies with

sudo apt-get -f install

Note that this would probably not work because of non-installable dependencies. If the package has no dependencies or all are in Ubuntu - then it will be ok. Alternatively if you decide that you REALLY know what you are doing then you can modify the dependencies of the DEB file manually using:


chmod +x ./ [package.deb]

And then force install it with the first command given above.

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+1 for detailed instructions - and for the warning! – Nathan Osman Oct 17 '10 at 6:21
Thanks everyone, ill give it a go. I know how to do it just wondered if it would be a good idea. :) – NightwishFan Oct 17 '10 at 8:11
You could always experiment with this kind of stuff on a Virtual Machine, so you don't take any risk of breaking your system. Install VirtualBox or VmWare Player. – lovinglinux Oct 17 '10 at 9:22

I think you can. There are several packages that do not have a 64bit version. What you can't do is install a 64bit on a 32bit. Nevertheless, depending on the package and dependencies, you might experience some issues. For instance, Firefox 32 bit on a 64bit cannot recognize the 64bit plugins.

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Yes, I see. I needed 32-bit glade libs in this case. – NightwishFan Oct 17 '10 at 8:20

I've used this a few times:

It's a program called getlibs. As one of the other responders mentioned, you'll install using dpkg's --force-all option. Then you run getlibs to get all the 32-bit dependencies.

Before I started using pymazon, i was using this method to get Amazon's MP3 downloader to work under amd64.

Anyway, the instructions are pretty well laid out in the ubuntu forum post. Let me know if you have questions or issues.

I think typically there are no issues. I wouldn't recommend it for system critical things .. but in that case there would probably be a 64-bit version available. But for the deb here and there, I think it's fine.

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