Octave for GNU/Linux

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The recommended way for installing Octave and Octave-Forge packages on GNU/Linux systems is via each distribution package installation system.

More detailed instructions follow.

Debian and Debian-based (such as Ubuntu)

Main article: Octave for Debian systems

Simply install Octave from your distribution repository:

apt-get install octave

For old versions of Ubuntu that only supply old versions of Octave, consider using Octave's PPA. For more details, see the Debian specific instructions page.

There are also Debian packages for each of the Octave-Forge packages, usually named octave<pkgname>, e.g, octave-image and octave-statistics for the image processing and statistics package respectively. A complete list of them can be found with the command:

aptitude search ?description\(octave-forge\)


Main article: Octave for Red Hat Linux systems

The packages can be installed using the yum command, they are:

  • octave
  • octave-devel
  • octave-forge

octave-forge is recommended to all users, as it provides many extra functions. octave-devel contains the octave headers and mkoctfile script and is really only needed by users who are developing code that is to be dynamically linked to octave. octave and octave-forge can be installed with the command:

   # yum install octave-forge

By default, yum will most likely install blas and lapack as your matrix math libraries, but ATLAS is usually much faster. If you want to install atlas with octave, use the command

   # yum install octave-forge atlas

Note that if you are using an i386-compatible processor the base atlas package is not optimized for newer hardware. If you have newer hardware, you can get even better performance with the atlas-3dnow (AMD K6 processors), atlas-sse (Pentium III or newer), or atlas-sse2 (Pentium 4 or newer).


Octave is available through Gentoo's package management system, Portage:

   # emerge --sync

Add USE flag 'curl' into your /etc/portage/package.use file to enable remote Octave-Forge packages fetching

sci-mathematics/octave curl

and emerge Octave

   # emerge octave

Since Octave ver. > 3.4.0 is able to fetch Octave-Forge packages from remote repository, packages octave-forge or g-octave are no more needed.

Before installing any Octave-Forge package, in Octave command prompt you must type

pkg -forge list

and then install your favourite packages. Typically, you have to start with

pkg install -forge general

Red Hat Enterprise/CentOS

Main article: Octave for Red Hat Linux systems

Octave is available for Red Hat Enterprise Linux distributions through the EPEL repository. This section applies to CentOS, Scientific Linux, and other Red Hat Enterprise rebuild distributions as well.

Method 1 - the quick way:

   yum install epel-release
   yum install octave

Method 2 - if the above does not work:

First, follow these instructions to set up your system to install packages from EPEL. For example,

   # wget http://url/to/latest/epel-release-6-7.noarch.rpm
   # yum localinstall epel-release-6-7.noarch.rpm

Once the EPEL repository has been enabled, you can follow the rest of the instructions for Fedora to install Octave using yum.

Note that EPEL intentionally does not follow new releases as closely as other distributions. Consequently, the version of Octave provided by EPEL may be several months or years out of date. There are plans for the Octave maintainers to provide support and binary RPMs for enterprise GNU/Linux distributions, contact the maintainers mailing list for more information.

SUSE Linux and openSUSE

Main article: Octave for openSUSE

Binary packages for Octave are provided by all versions of openSUSE. It can be installed by command:

zypper in octave

Latest stable version of Octave and Octave-Forge are available on Science repository. For details see openSUSE specific wiki page.

Arch Linux

Main article: Octave for Arch Linux

Updated Octave's version is in the extra repository. It can be installed by typing:

   # pacman -S octave