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Please note that all the SIEpedia's articles address specific issues or questions raised by IAC users, so they do not attempt to be rigorous or exhaustive, and may or may not be useful or applicable in different or more general contexts.

Astronomical software installation in (Ubuntu) laptops

This page provides simple scripts to install astronomical software packages in your own laptop, all by yourself. By running these scripts you basically get an exact copy of the software package as installed in our desktop PCs. The scripts are tested on a 64-bit Ubuntu 18.04 platform, but the installation script may also work on other Linux distributions.

Just download the .run file corresponding to the package you need, and launch the installation procedure with sudo sh <filename>.run. If you get an error message telling that there is not enough space in the "/tmp" directory, try the following: 1) create a temporary directory in /var/tmp: mkdir /var/tmp/MS, 2) use the command: sudo sh <filename>.run --target /var/tmp/MS. Once the installation is completed, you can delete the whole content of /var/tmp/MS

Note that you may need to change a couple of environment variables, PATH and LD_LIBRARY_PATH, to be able to use these packages. See instructions at the end of this page.

Finally, make sure that all the required dependencies are installed.

Available software packages

Further software packages will be added according to local demand.

To download the scripts, place the cursor on the link, then right-click and select "Save linked content as" or the equivalent option for your browser. Alternatively, copy the link address and use wget from the command line to retrieve it.

  • Aladin v11.034 (6.2 MB)
    • Java-based application. Uses the Java version provided by the OS.
  • Cloudy v17.01 (203 MB)
    • Includes the data directory.
  • Gildas Apr19a (26 MB)
    • Requires cfitsio and atlas libraries (both available in the Ubuntu repositories).
  • Indexf v4.2.2 (661 KB)
    • Requires PGPLOT (installable from the Ubuntu repositories)
  • IRAF v2.16.1 (869 MB)
    • Includes packages developed at the IAC (iactasks, lirisdr).
    • To run IRAF you also need to have the tcsh shell installed (do it with the package manager of your Linux distribution), plus several 32-bit packages: glibc, ncurses, libXmu.
    • See the README file for installation/configuration/usage notes.
  • Reduceme v5.0 (6.8 MB)
    • Requires PGPLOT (installable from the Ubuntu repositories)
  • Rmodel v3.2.2 (1.5 MB)
    • Requires PGPLOT (installable from the Ubuntu repositories)

Other Packages

Many popular packages are not included in the above list because they already have simple installation procedures provided on their websites.

  • DS9
  • Python
    • An excellent option is to use the Python provided by Ubuntu. Many packages are available that can be quickly installed with apt (for instance, apt install python3-matplotlib python3-numpy python3-pip), others can be installed using pip.
    • Alternatively, one can install a complete Python distribution such as Anaconda, which can be augmented by Astroconda to obtain a comprehensive, astronomy-oriented Python package including all the STScI tools and IRAF/PyRAF.
  • Astromatic: Sextractor, SCAMP, etc.
    • Astromatic software tools can be easily installed from the Ubuntu repositories.

Licensed packages

Other packages are licensed and cannot be freely distributed.

If you are at the IAC and wish to install IDL, please see the instructions in http://venus/SIE/wiki/pmwiki.php?n=SIEInvEns.InstalacionesPortatiles (both for Linux and macOS).

For Supermongo, ask us.

If you wish to install the Intel compilers in your Linux laptop, using the IAC's floating licenses, see http://venus/SIE/wiki/pmwiki.php?n=SIEInvEns.InstalacionesPortatiles.

Environment variables

Some of the above packages require that directory /usr/local/lib be in LD_LIBRARY_PATH. (Check with printenv LD_LIBRARY_PATH.) If it's not, or if LD_LIBRARY_PATH is undefined, you can add the following lines of code (valid for a bash shell) in your own .bash_profile file:

if [ -z "$LD_LIBRARY_PATH" ]; then
    export LD_LIBRARY_PATH="/usr/local/lib"
    export LD_LIBRARY_PATH="${LD_LIBRARY_PATH}:/usr/local/lib"

Likewise, /usr/local/bin/ must be in your PATH. (Check with printenv PATH.) If not, you can add the following lines in your .bash_profile file:

if [ -z "$PATH" ]; then
    export PATH="/usr/local/bin"
    export PATH="/usr/local/bin:${PATH}"
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Page last modified on May 10, 2021, at 01:14 PM