Friday, January 7, 2011

Google Earth on Ubuntu 10.10

Have you ever wanted to install the latest greatest Google Earth on Ubuntu, only to find that the repository contains an old version.  Here is the solution laid out in simple to follow terminal commands.

Install sudo apt-get install googleearth-package

Then run make-googleearth-package --force

Now you should find a .deb package in your home folder ready to install.  If the install fails and your on a 64 bit machine, try this. In the terminal run sudo aptitude install lib32nss-mdns lsb then try reinstalling the .deb package.  You can also download the .deb file for version 6 beta from here http://www.google.com/earth/download/ge/agree.html

At this point you should have a functioning install of Google Earth running in Ubuntu.  If you have an ATI Video card, you probably have more problems...  You might notice that the area that is typically black with stars goes transparent on you.

Try this trick. Modify your Icon launcher to read like this: 

XLIB_SKIP_ARGB_VISUALS=1 googleearth -style GTK+ %f

The result should look like this!


  1. Google Earth has caught signal 11.

  2. And why would you do that? Just install the current .deb from the earth.google.com and it will automagically update when there is an update.

  3. Thanks for this, and thanks for jpugh who alerted me to the fact that you can download the .deb files from google, including the 64 bit .deb (which I need)

    As for ATI graphics cards, they are reasonably priced and seem to be included in more & more retail desktops, but I have much better performance with NVIDIA (especially with Linux).

  4. @jpugh They recently add the .deb for verison 6 beta. Version 5.2 is a .bin file. I added the information about 6.0 to the post.
    @mrdtr NVIDIA does seem to have better Linux support.

  5. @sles could you expound on the signal 11 problem. What is the fix for it?

  6. You can also install Google Earth by using Bleeding Edge:


    It is a non-compiled, easy to use shell script.

  7. >What is the fix for it?

    only fix I know is to run 5.x , it works OK