Extract, Compile, and Install Anything in Linux

From time to time every Linux user will run across a program that does not come in a nice packaged DEB or RPM. Often in the form of a tar.gz, tgz, tar.bz, tar, gz, tar.bz2 or tbz2 format. This is how you can make use of them. Remember to have a compiler installed and any dependencies for the software you installing.


To uncompress your file run the following command that applies to your extension.

$ tar -zxvf file.tar.gz
$ tar -zxvf file.tgz
$ tar -jxvf file.tar.bz
$ tar -xvf file.tar
$ gunzip file.gz
$ tar jxf file.tar.bz2
$ tar jxf file.tbz2


Often software will come with a README or install file that should give you instructions on how to install it and any required dependencies as well as how use it. It will probably say the same I have here, or something similar. Once you extract the source, cd into the newly created directory.

$ ls
$ cd path-to-software/

Now as root configure the software, this sets up the software and compiler for your system.

$ ./configure
$ make


Okay, now for the last and simplest step, the install.

# make install

Everything should have gone well; enjoy your new software!