Build Linux Apps from Source With Checkinstall for Fewer Problems

Even if you know how to compile software from source code, you often end up with an application that your system doesn't technically know exists. That can mean duplicated apps, file issues and removal problems — unless you use the checkinstall command.

Source-code builds are often the only way to get at the cutting-edge builds of software with the newest features or to grab applications that your own distribution doesn't have its own packages for. Doing that, though, goes around your system's normal package management tools, so your system is less aware of its existence and removing all its files from the corners of your system proves a bit trickier.

As the Linux Journal points out, the normal process for building an app from source is ./configure, make, followed by sudo make install. Skip that last step though, and type sudo checkinstall instead, and you'll build a more trackable package out of the code bundle you just compiled. Checkinstall is installed on most Debian/Ubuntu-style distributions, but can be used on others, too. Read the Linux Journal write-up for deeper detail on checkinstall and how it can be customised.

Using Checkinstall To Build Packages From Source [Linux Journal]


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