Installing DEB packages quickly and easily

Software Installer, installing .deb packages on Ubuntu

In Ubuntu the installation through graphical interface of DEB packages downloaded by the user is a fairly simple and straightforward task, although not exactly fast, since it is an action that is carried out by means of a special installer that can take a long time to open if our computer has limited hardware.

Ubuntu Software it's fine for those who want quick and easy software, but not for experienced users who prefer something more flexible. The official Ubuntu store prioritizes snap packages, and from here we recommend using the GNOME Software Center whenever we can, since, among other things, it supports flatpak packages.

Different options to install .deb packages

the native

As we have explained, there is a native option with which we can install the .deb packages directly. The problem is that it's a bit confusing, and sometimes it takes a long time to open. Once we have downloaded the .deb package, installing it with the official installer is as simple as double click, wait for the information to load and then click “Install” (header screenshot).

If we see that it takes too long, it can also be done right click on the .deb and choose the option “Open with Install Software”. If it takes so long, it is because of how snap packages are designed, that the first time they are executed after a reboot they collect information necessary for their execution.


If we don't like how the official option works, it is worth following our recommendation to install GNOMEsoftware and forget about Ubuntu Software forever.

To install .deb packages with GNOME Software first we have to install the store, something that we will achieve by opening a terminal and typing:

sudo apt install gnome-software

Once installed, what we have to do is secondary click on the .deb file, then "Open With..." and then what at the time of this writing appears as "Software Installation." The text looks very similar to the official installer, but it opens first (it's not a snap package) and we'll do it with the store we recommend using for everything, unless Canonical backs down and changes their Ubuntu Software a lot.


When we choose that option, we will see something like the previous screenshot, and All you have to do is click on "Install". As extra information, if we want to install future .deb packages with GNOME Software by double-clicking, we must activate the switch that appears under the "Open with..." window that says "Always use for this type of file".

With GDebi


Alternatively Gdebi, a small tool that in the past handled the installation of DEB packages in the Canonical distribution, but has unfortunately been replaced by Ubuntu Software (formerly Ubuntu Software Center) in more current versions of the operating system. The good news is that it is still in the repositories and its installation is as simple as opening a console and typing:

sudo apt install gdebi

Once you Gdebi is installed on our system, as with GNOME Software, we must secondary click on the DEB packages that we want to install and select the program so that they are installed through it and not through the official Ubuntu installer. We will save the much slower load of the installer, and the installation procedure will remain as simple as it was before the change.

What never fails: with the terminal

And we could not fail to include in an article like this the option of Command line. It is clear that it is not as comfortable as doing it with a double click, but it is something that will always work, no matter how many changes are made to the interface or applications.

Also, it is an easy short command to learn. If we want to install .deb packages from the terminal, we have to write the following:

sudo dpkg -i nombre-del-paquete

My recommendation to make the process even easier is to write the first part, up to the -i, and drag the package to the terminal window, so we will have it exactly the same and we won't make mistakes. If we decide to do it manually, keep in mind that sometimes you have to put the file name in quotes.

On other Debian/Ubuntu based operating systems

If you are using another operating system or other graphical environments other than GNOME, but your system has Debian or Ubuntu basedSo first of all I would recommend double clicking on the .deb file and seeing what happens. If an installer opens, it is more than likely that in the next step it will be enough to click on a button with the text "Install". If we don't see anything, the next thing to try is to right click and search for a software center or installer software, and install it with that program. To save time on the next install, you can right click on the .deb package, then properties and tell it to always open that type of file with that installer that has worked for us.

And if this does not work for us, what will always work for us is to pull the terminal.

More information - Convert RPM files to DEB and vice versa with Package Converter

6 comments, leave yours

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  1.   Jamin fernandez said

    Better than software center when it comes to uninstalling something or resolving broken dependencies

  2.   Estiben Ortega said

    Excuse me, but I wanted to ask you what happens when you try to download gdebi. but it says the package cannot be found.

    # sudo apt-get install gdebi
    Reading package list ... Done
    Creating dependency tree
    Reading the status information ... Done
    E: The gdebi package could not be located

    and in apt-get update to download files with a speed of 1.289 b / s »1 kb per second» and my Wi-Fi network speed is 9 MB / s at times of 30 MB in windows the speed if it has but in ubuntu not, someone who could you please help me?

  3.   Renee Mendoza said

    really very good, only using this application I managed to install the OPERA browser using ubuntu 20.04

  4.   Patrick said

    I appreciate your indications, do the 5 lines except the flash but when trying
    installing the browser OPERA continues refusing to install, accusing a "dependency" problem: libgtk-3-0 (minor symbol = 3.21.5).
    I suspect my system is damaged even though everything works fine.
    Whether it has a solution or not, I congratulate and highlight your valuable contributions to both amateurs (me) and professionals. I doubt that it is a virus
    My platform is Linux Mint-KDE 64
    Greetings and good luck to overcome the battle with the covirus

  5.   Acuna Mendez Victor said

    In the universe you can control almost every piece of open source software and software available under a variety of less open licenses and actomatically create a variety of public sources and the basic tool chain and zystem library from scratch are still used to build this software and it is normally kept in stage with them, why should you install it and it works fine, but it comes without guarantees of assurances, fix, and apollo, the universe component includes Thousands of pieces of software through universe users , and they are able to have the diversity and flexibility offered by the great open world of open source.


    How can it be installed if you are not an administrator?