Sunday, February 8, 2009

Installing KiCad on Ubuntu

If you are an electronics enthusiast, this is a must application for you. It is used to create schematic captures, PCB designs, and create 3D views of the PCB designs.

you can install kicad from the repository by typing
sudo apt-get install kicad
in the terminal. Where the terminal is? see this link.

but, the installed version is not the latest one. so here is a guide on how to install an updated KiCad.

Installing the required softwares and dependencies

we need to install the following: debhelper, dpatch, libx11-dev, libglu1-mesa-dev, libgl1-mesa-dev, mesa-common-dev, libwxbase2.8-dev, libwxgtk2.8-dev, libboost-dev, subversion, cmake (>= 2.6.0)

to install on ubuntu, on the terminal, simply type
sudo apt-get install debhelper dpatch libx11-dev libglu1-mesa-dev libgl1-mesa-dev mesa-common-dev libwxbase2.8-dev libwxgtk2.8-dev libboost-dev fakeroot subversion libboost-serialization-dev
and finally, we need cmake, but we need atleast version 2.6, the one from the repository is not the updated one (atleast for ubuntu 8.04). You can download version 2.6 from here..

but if what the repository gives you is atleast version 2.6, then simply
sudo apt-get install cmake

Getting the Source Codes

we will be getting the source codes through svn. create a directory where you'll be downloading the source codes, and go to that directory. type the following:
svn checkout kicad

svn checkout kicad-doc

svn checkout kicad-library
also we need the following
svn checkout


to compile simply do the following on your terminal (make sure you're still in the same directory where you did the svn)
fakeroot debian/rules binary
hopefully, there will be no errors.

Running KiCad

You'll find the compiled version of KiCad on
to complete things up, you'll need to copy the following folders
in here

again, to run KiCad go to

and double click KiCad



  1. It crashed. It worked just fine on Jaunty Jackalope,but Kosmic Karma..., get lots of errors.

  2. is the link working?

  3. Excellent blog, I really appreciate this tool and this'll be an important contribution. KiCad has no autorouting capabilities of it's own, but can be easily combined with the java-based autorouter freeware and it'd be fine if you can add more explanations about it. 2j3j

  4. Great tutorial on the installment!