Octave for Debian systems

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Revision as of 06:34, 20 July 2012 by Carandraug (talk | contribs) (further instructions)
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For Debian, and Debian based distributions such as Ubuntu, specific solutions.

Pre-compiled binaries

Compiling from source

The only tricky part is to install the dependencies. Once that is solved, installing from source should be as easy as ./configure && make && make install. See the manual for the configure options.


The easy way to install most of the necessary dependencies is to sudo apt-get build-dep octave (the actual package name may be slightly different). However, this will also install extra packages unrelated to the build of octave and may miss some dependencies (depending on the distance between the version on the repositories and the one being built).

The best way is to select and install all the dependencies as listed on the INSTALL.OCTAVE file. The following is their package names for Debian repositories (they will have their own dependencies which your package maintainer will solve automatically).

  • build tools
g++ gcc gfortran make
  • external packages
libblas-dev liblapack-dev libpcre3-dev
  • optional but strongly recommended
libreadline-dev libarpack2-dev libcurl4-gnutls-dev libfftw3-dev libfltk-dev libfontconfig1-dev libfreetype6-dev libglpk-dev libgraphicsmagick++-dev gnuplot libhdf5-serial-dev libgl-dev libqhull-dev libqrupdate-dev libsuitesparse-dev texinfo zlib1g-dev
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debian repositories has several libraries for dealing with HDF data files. The recommended one is the libhdf5-serial-dev. However, the msh package requires gmsh which is not compatible with it.
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the GraphicsMagick++ library on the debian repositories was compiled with quantum 8 which limits reading images to 8 bit. The solution is to recompile GraphicsMagick with quantum 32.
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different debian versions may have slightly different package names but their differences should be pretty small and limited to version numbers.
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if only the native graphics toolkit will be used, gnuplot will not be necessary.