How to Install on Linux

I’m running a dual boot system having recently installed Ubuntu 5.04 to my second drive (XP Home on master drive). I have an Athlon 64 bit chip so the Ubuntu is a 64 bit version.

I’d like to run Blender on Ubuntu. I assume I should download the Blender version Linux PPC 2.3.2 (6.4 MB) from the download site.

The instructions to install are:

Download the file blender-#.##-linux-glibc#.#.#-ARCH.tar.gz from the downloads section of the Blender Website. Choose to download it (if prompted), select a location and click “Save”. Then navigate to the location you wish blender to install to (e.g. /usr/local/) and unpack the archive (with tar xzf /path/to/blender-#.##-linux-glibc#.#.#-ARCH.tar.gz). If you like, you can rename the resulting directory from blender-#.##-linux-glibc#.#.#-ARCH to something shorter, e.g. just blender.

However as a Linux newbie I don’t actually know what this means. For example does it mean I can just save the file to desktop then go into the /usr/local folder then go to command line and type xzf /path/to/blender-2.37a-linux-glibc2.3.2-powerpc.tar.tar

Where does the ARCH and gz come from? Also how can I create anything in the local file when it doesn’t even allow me to create a folder there. Also how do I know if I’m openGL.

the PPC version is for Mac, as far as I know …

Try to search for “64bits” and things like that in the blender general forum.

You might be right about the PPC bit. My question is more along the lines of how do you install things in Linux. With Windows its easy just click on the installer.

Linux != Windows.

Ubuntu has its own package-management system. Much easier than Windows. Just open up synapitic, search for blender and install. Though the blenderversion that’s in ubuntu 2.36 and not the new 2.37a.

To install blender manually with the tar.gz-package just doubleclick the package and File Roller will open. Click extract and choose path to extract to. Or even easier, rightclick the package and choose “extract here”.

Go to the directory were you extract it and doubleclick on the file “blender”.

The instructions are refering to commands for the cli. You don’t really have to do that.

Thanks, I’ll give it a go.

I downloaded the Linux i386 via Mozilla and then extracted the file, this seems to be basically an unzipping thing.

The extracted files look similar to that in Windows, so I double clicked on Blender but no go. There isn’t a Blender 2.36 on Ubuntu.

I’ve tried the static and dynamic versions.

Any ideas? Could it be that Blender won’t work because I have 64 bit ubuntu?

You could always try compiling it? Linux is good like that. I got the latest tohopuu CVS up and running the other day on 32bit Ubuntu. I can remember exactly what I had to install but it’s simple enough to walk yourself through it.

Start by getting your self either the Blender 2.37a source (from or go to, then projects and hunt down instructions for getting hold of BF blender via cvs.

Blender complies with something called ‘scons’. Simply do a

sudo apt-get install scons

in a command shell to get hold of that. If you’ve not compiled anything yet you’ll also need

sudo apt-get install build-essential

Navigate to you source directory (in a command shell) ie.

cd /home/user/path/to/source

Type ‘scons’ at the command prompt. It should start to compile. I will most likely come up with an error, but handily enough theat error will tell you pretty much how to fix it. It might suggest that it can’t find a library of some kind. So install the library and it’s ‘dev’ equivalent ie.

sudo apt-get install library library-dev

Keep repeating the above steps till it compiles all the way through and you should be done. If you now look at the source directory in Nautilus you’ll find a nice, shiny blender executable, built for your system, that you can just double click on.

If you’ve got any problems with this just post back and we can see what to do. If you include a cut-n-paste of the last few lines of the error that’ll help too.

Hope this helps
Mr Wonka

Thanks Mr Wonka.

I was just about to ask about compiling so your post is just what I needed.


You should start the dynamic version ( don’t use the static) inside a console or Xterm
That way you’ll know why Blender don’t run ( probably missing libs)

here’s a way to install Blender
“unzip it” and as Root copy the Blender folder to, let’s say:
/usr/local or /usr/share
Then enter the Blender folder select the blender executable, and make a symbolic link
to /usr/bin/blender
Now, as a normal user, you can open a X term and type blender

Thanks OTO

I don’t yet know how to get into root, presumably this would allow me to alter things in the filesystem… currently they have padlock symbols on them.

However I extracted the contents of the dynamic file into my home directory and typed the following into a terminal;

[email protected]:~$ /home/juan/BlenderFoundation/blender/blender

and got the following;

/home/juan/BlenderFoundation/blender/blender: error while loading shared libraries: libSDL- cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory

Where would I get such a file?


you don’t know how to became Root? Well, you’re a very beginner, but it’s not a problem :slight_smile:
To became root ( and you’re wright, you’ll have al the privilegies, so take care) type
in a console “su root” ( without the quotes of course)
then enter the root password
Now you can use the midnight comander file manager, very useful and a Linux classic
Probably it’s already installed?! Just type “mc”…something appear??
If yes, goooood. With it you can easily untar, unzip, and make symbolic links amongst many other things
Then “install” Blender as I’ve said before.

Well, you can, of course, run Blender as you’ve done
About the SDL problem?
You probably don’t have the SDL library instaled ( for sound), or it’s in a wrong place
Now that depends the Distribution you have
But most of the times it’s the same way of doing
You must open your distro packet/software manager ( RPM DRake for Mandriva, YAST for Suse…APT-get for Debian) and search for SDL or libSDL and install it
It’s all

OTO: That doesn’t work because Ubuntu doesn’t have a root-user! :slight_smile:

You have to “sudo <yourcommand>” (then type the password of YOUR user)

…or to be root completely “sudo -s” then your user’s password.

It is quite astonishing no one talked about changing permissions.

Every time an executable doesn’t launch in the GUi , it’s the first time I think about.

File permissions are usually changed under a console and it might not be necessary to be logged as root (otherwise do so) :

type when in your blender’s executable folder :
chmod +x blender

you could try “man chmod” for your general knowledge (quit with “:” and then “q”). chmod +777 gives all the permissions to a file for all users(you can see what permissions a file has using ls or ll (and you might need to be a root).

Mr Wonka, I got this far;

[email protected]:~$ sudo apt-get install build-essential
Reading package lists… Done
Building dependency tree… Done
build-essential is already the newest version.
0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 1 not upgraded.
[email protected]:~$ cd /home/juan/BlenderFoundation/blendersource/blender-2.37a.tar.gz_FILES/blender
[email protected]:~/BlenderFoundation/blendersource/blender-2.37a.tar.gz_FILES/blender$ scons
bash: scons: command not found

Am I doing this right. I got the source file then put it in a folder in my home directory then extracted it, then did the above.

I get the following error:

scons: Reading SConscript files ...
targets =  []
arguments =  {}
sh: sdl-config: command not found
distutils.errors.DistutilsPlatformError: invalid Python installation: unable to open /usr/lib/python2.4/config/Makefile (No such file or directory):
  File "SConstruct", line 118:
    python_linkflags = Split (sysconfig.get_config_var('LINKFORSHARED'))
  File "/usr/lib/python2.4/distutils/", line 511:
    return get_config_vars().get(name)
  File "/usr/lib/python2.4/distutils/", line 488:
  File "/usr/lib/python2.4/distutils/", line 358:
    raise DistutilsPlatformError(my_msg)

I downloaded the blender source files from, but not from cvs. This error is looking for a file /config/Makefile The path is right up until python2.4; however, I have no config dir or Makefile in my Python2.4 installation. Any tips? Thanks.


Well, I am further along. Here is the output from my scons build of bf-blender so far (Any clues - I’ve installed libttf2 and -dev of same library):

scons: Reading SConscript files ...
targets =  []
arguments =  {}
Using config file: config.opts
scons: done reading SConscript files.
scons: Building targets ...
gcc -pipe -funsigned-char -O2 -Wall -W -DGAMEBLENDER=1 -DUSE_SUMO_SOLID -DNDEBUG -DBUILD_TIME='"11:50:17"' -DBUILD_DATE='"2005-08-05"' -DBUILD_TYPE='"dynamic"' -DNAN_BUILDINFO -DBUILD_PLATFORM='"linux2"' -I/usr/include -I/usr/X11R6/include -c -o /home/rherman/bf-blender/build/linux2/source/creator/player_buildinfo.o source/creator/buildinfo.c
gcc -pipe -funsigned-char -O2 -Wall -W -DGAMEBLENDER=1 -DUSE_SUMO_SOLID -DNDEBUG -DWITH_FREETYPE2 -I/home/rherman/bf-blender/build/linux2/source/blender/blenlib -Isource/blender/blenlib -Isource/blender/blenlib -I/home/rherman/bf-blender/build/linux2/source/blender/makesdna -Isource/blender/makesdna -Isource/blender/makesdna -I/home/rherman/bf-blender/build/linux2/source/blender/blenkernel -Isource/blender/blenkernel -Isource/blender/blenkernel -Iintern/guardedalloc -I/home/rherman/bf-blender/build/linux2/source/blender/include -Isource/blender/include -Isource/blender/include -c -o /home/rherman/bf-blender/build/linux2/source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.o source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:42:22: ft2build.h: No such file or directory
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:43:10: #include expects "FILENAME" or &lt;FILENAME&gt;
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:44:10: #include expects "FILENAME" or &lt;FILENAME&gt;
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:45:10: #include expects "FILENAME" or &lt;FILENAME&gt;
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:46:10: #include expects "FILENAME" or &lt;FILENAME&gt;
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:47:31: freetype/ttnameid.h: No such file or directory
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:66: error: syntax error before "library"
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:66: warning: type defaults to `int' in declaration of `library'
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:66: warning: data definition has no type or storage class
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:67: error: syntax error before "err"
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:67: warning: type defaults to `int' in declaration of `err'
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:67: warning: data definition has no type or storage class
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c: In function `objfnt_to_ftvfontdata':
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:78: error: `FT_Face' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:78: error: (Each undeclared identifier is reported only once
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:78: error: for each function it appears in.)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:78: error: syntax error before "face"
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:79: error: `FT_GlyphSlot' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:80: error: `FT_UInt' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:81: error: `FT_Outline' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:95: warning: implicit declaration of function `FT_New_Memory_Face'
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:99: error: `face' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:125: warning: implicit declaration of function `FT_Get_Postscript_Name'
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:125: warning: assignment makes pointer from integer without a cast
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:126: warning: implicit declaration of function `strcpy'
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:141: error: `glyph_index' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:141: warning: implicit declaration of function `FT_Get_Char_Index'
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:142: warning: implicit declaration of function `FT_Load_Glyph'
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:142: error: `FT_LOAD_NO_SCALE' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:142: error: `FT_LOAD_NO_BITMAP' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:145: error: `glyph' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:146: error: `ftoutline' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:167: error: `FT_Curve_Tag_On' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:171: error: `FT_Curve_Tag_Conic' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:221: error: `FT_Curve_Tag_Cubic' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c: In function `check_freetypefont':
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:314: error: `FT_Face' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:314: error: syntax error before "face"
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:315: error: `FT_GlyphSlot' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:316: error: `FT_UInt' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:330: error: `face' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:354: error: `glyph_index' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:355: error: `FT_LOAD_NO_SCALE' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:355: error: `FT_LOAD_NO_BITMAP' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:358: error: `glyph' undeclared (first use in this function)
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:359: error: `ft_glyph_format_outline' undeclared (first use in this function)source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c: In function `BLI_vfontdata_from_freetypefont':
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:378: warning: implicit declaration of function `FT_Init_FreeType'
source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.c:391: warning: implicit declaration of function `FT_Done_FreeType'
scons: *** [/home/rherman/bf-blender/build/linux2/source/blender/blenlib/intern/freetypefont.o] Error 1
scons: building terminated because of errors.

I’ll keep trying to learn scons and linux os in the meanwhile. Thanks.



I recently compiled bf-blender 2.37 for my dual amd mp 1.2ghz system. I’m not sure how I could package if for you, but if you want it, I can figure out how to do so. I am also running Ubuntu hoary. I am switching from windows, so there are some things I need to relearn. I haven’t been on linux for 10+ years. I had minix running on my old Amiga 1000!