Native GIS software for Ubuntu (Linux)? The most famous is grass and qgis but it is not the only GIS software, is it?

  • 1
    I suggest you search the software center or Synaptic for "gis" (and maybe also "geo") and try them all. I hope you have a lot of time... ;)
    – JanC
    Oct 23 '10 at 15:54
  • That's a pretty broad question. Is there something specific you're looking to do?
    – ændrük
    May 23 '11 at 16:27
  • 1
    You may be interested in GIS Stack Exchange
    – Marco Ceppi
    Sep 13 '11 at 17:34

I use Quantum GIS, it is an excellent promising GIS package, has a very nice graphic user interface based on Qt, it can act as an interface to the venerable GRASS GIS tools too.

SAGA GIS which looks like a good second to Quantum GIS is available in the repositories. Do not forget Google Earth, even though it is not open source and have some limitations compared to a specialized GIS package it can be a very useful tool for some of your GIS work.

A useful set of command line tools to use for mapping and some GIS work are the Generic Mapping Tools GMT. The Geospatial Data Abstraction Library Utility programs are a must, you can get these by installing gdal-bin from the repositories.


There are many GIS options available on Ubuntu. As you note, GRASS and Quantum GIS are two of the most widely used applications. They are probably the most user friendly options as well.

Thuban (install Install thuban) is another desktop option.

Mapserve is a web-based GIS option available in the repos.

The Ubuntu GIS team has a PPA providing the most up to date versions of geospacial related software for Ubuntu. This would be a good place to start investigating further options. The Debian DIS team is relevant as well.


There is a very nice overview of open source GIS applications that run on ubuntu on the OSGEO live dvd, and it is also available here: http://live.osgeo.org/en/overview/overview.html

This live dvd is based on ubuntu so all discussed applications can be installed on ubuntu, although some installation programs are better integrated (eg packages through synaptic).


Not directly related to your question, but if you're looking to convert GIS formats, gpsbabel does a great job. It's likely to be a good complement to any GIS app that you use.


You could also check out the stackexchange GIS beta site https://gis.stackexchange.com/, to see if there are Ubuntu or Linux users there with tips.

One of the thread answers includes the Ubuntu GIS ppa that andrew mentioned : "The awesome Ubuntu GIS repository makes it really easy to install and keep updated with open source GIS software. Anyone installing an open source GIS stack on Windows will appreciate this."
Link from the comment, for completeness : Ubuntu Wiki UbuntuGIS

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.