Qt for Linux/X11 - Building from Source

You can download the Qt 5 sources from the Downloads page. For more information, visit the Getting Started with Qt page.

Qt for X11 has some requirements that are given in more detail in the Qt for X11 Requirements document.

Step 1: Installing the License File (Commercially Licensed Qt Only)

If you have a commercial Qt license, download the license file from your Qt Account Web portal and save it as $HOME/.qt-license.

Step 2: Unpacking the Archive

Unpack the archive if you have not done so already. For example, if you have the qt-everywhere-opensource-src-%VERSION%.tar.gz package, type the following commands at a command line prompt:

cd /tmp
gunzip qt-everywhere-opensource-src-%VERSION%.tar.gz        # uncompress the archive
tar xvf qt-everywhere-opensource-src-%VERSION%.tar          # unpack it

This creates the directory /tmp/qt-everywhere-opensource-src-%VERSION% containing the files from the archive. We only support the GNU version of the tar archiving utility. Note that on some systems it is called gtar.

Step 3: Building the Library

To configure the Qt library for your machine type, run the ./configure script in the package directory.

By default, Qt is configured for installation in the /usr/local/Qt-%VERSION% directory, but this can be changed by using the -prefix option.

cd /tmp/qt-everywhere-opensource-src-%VERSION%

The Configure Options page contains more information about the configure options.

To create the library and compile all the examples, tools, and tutorials, type:


If -prefix is outside the build directory, you need to install the library, examples, tools, and tutorials in the appropriate place. To do this (as root if necessary), type:

make install

Note that on some systems the make utility is named differently, e.g. gmake. The configure script tells you which make utility to use.

Note: If you later need to reconfigure and rebuild Qt from the same location, ensure that all traces of the previous configuration are removed by entering the build directory and typing make confclean before running configure again.

Step 4: Set the Environment Variables

In order to use Qt, some environment variables needs to be extended.

PATH               - to locate qmake, moc and other Qt tools

This is done like this:

In .profile (if your shell is bash, ksh, zsh or sh), add the following lines:

export PATH

In .login (in case your shell is csh or tcsh), add the following line:

setenv PATH /usr/local/Qt-%VERSION%/bin:$PATH

If you use a different shell, please modify your environment variables accordingly.

For compilers that do not support rpath you must also extended the LD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variable to include /usr/local/Qt-%VERSION%/lib. On Linux with GCC this step is not needed.

© 2016 The Qt Company Ltd. Documentation contributions included herein are the copyrights of their respective owners. The documentation provided herein is licensed under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License version 1.3 as published by the Free Software Foundation. Qt and respective logos are trademarks of The Qt Company Ltd. in Finland and/or other countries worldwide. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.