Ubuntu / Linux news and application reviews.

AutoDeb is an experimental script which completely automates compiling and installing software created using autoconf (most programs). It can either directly use the archived source code (.tar.gz or .tar.bz2), or a folder where the application was unpacked or downloaded from svn, bzr, etc. Once the software is compiled, a .deb file is automatically created and installed using checkinstall.

This script is very interesting because it automates the configure process by automatically installing the dependencies needed to build software. That works by running "./configure" and tracking all of configure's attempts to access files. When configure fails, AutoDeb uses AutoApt (more info on AutoAPT) to find out what package needs to be installed and then it runs configure again.

The AutoDeb wiki page explains why it is better than AutoApt:

Contrary to AutoApt, AutoDeb does not just install every file that 'configure' happens to peek at. Instead, it lets 'configure' run and fail, at which point it installs only the last package that 'configure' required, and repeats the process.

Using AutoDeb

Once you download (actually copy the script code to a file called autodeb.sh) AutoDeb - download link at the end of the post-, make the script executable:
sudo chmod +x autodeb.sh

And then use it like this:
sudo ./autodeb.sh --gnome /path/to/software.tar.gz

You can replace "gnome" with "kde" and "/path/to/software.tar.gz with a folder location instead of an archive.

[Video] I've created a small video with AutoDeb in action, just to see how easy it is to use:

To learn how to create a distributable .deb package, see our "How To Create A .DEB Package [Ubuntu / Debian]" post.

Download AutoDeb | More info and concept