This article is from the Frequently Asked Questions for Linux, the Free/Open Source UNIX-like operating system kernel that runs on many modern computer systems. Maintained by David C. Merrill with numerous contributions by others. (v1.0).
A: On a correctly configured system, installing a GNU software package requires four steps:
1. With the source.tar.gz archive in the /usr/src/ directory, or wherever you maintain your source files, untar and decompress the package with the command: tar zxvf package-name.tar.gz 2. Run the ./configure script in the untarred source archive's top-level directory with whatever command line arguments you need. The options that configure recognizes are usually contained in a file called INSTALL or README. 3. Run make. This will build the source code into an executable program (or programs) and may take a few minutes or a few hours, depending on the speed of the computer and the size of the package. 4. Run make install. This will install the compiled binaries, configuration files, and any libraries in the appropriate directories.