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Can I install ns2 and ns3 together in Ubuntu 16.04?

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If you have a look at the installed files for each package you will see that both can happily exist on the same system with no potentially overwritten files or duplicate filenames:

1. ns2

/usr/bin/calcdest
/usr/bin/dec-tr-stat
/usr/bin/epa-tr-stat
/usr/bin/nlanr-tr-stat
/usr/bin/ns
/usr/bin/nse
/usr/bin/nstk
/usr/bin/setdest
/usr/bin/ucb-tr-stat
/usr/share/doc/ns2/README
/usr/share/doc/ns2/README.Debian
/usr/share/doc/ns2/TODO.html
/usr/share/doc/ns2/changelog.Debian.gz
/usr/share/doc/ns2/copyright
/usr/share/doc/ns2/release_steps.txt
/usr/share/lintian/overrides/ns2
/usr/share/man/man1/ns.1.gz
/usr/share/man/man1/nse.1.gz
/usr/share/man/man1/nstk.1.gz

2. ns3

/usr/bin/ns3.22-bench-packets
/usr/bin/ns3.22-bench-simulator
/usr/bin/ns3.22-print-introspected-doxygen
/usr/bin/ns3.22-raw-sock-creator
/usr/bin/ns3.22-tap-creator
/usr/bin/ns3.22-tap-device-creator
/usr/share/doc/ns3/README
/usr/share/doc/ns3/README.Debian
/usr/share/doc/ns3/RELEASE_NOTES.gz
/usr/share/doc/ns3/changelog.Debian.gz
/usr/share/doc/ns3/copyright
/usr/share/lintian/overrides/ns3

And I have run a test install of both on my Xenial Xerus system:

sudo apt-get install ns2 ns3

with absolutely no installation issues...

References:

  • @Sousou So hopefully this answer has adequately answered your issue? If so you can 'Accept' the answer by clicking on the tick or check mark near the answer. This signifies for future readers that this was the most correct answer. And have a great day :) – andrew.46 Oct 7 '16 at 21:21
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You should be able to just do sudo apt-get install ns2 ns3 and have them both installed, yes.

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