Using CheckInstall to track custom source downloads on Debian

CheckInstall keeps track of all files installed by a “make install” or equivalent, creates a Slackware, RPM, or Debian package with those files, and adds it to the installed packages database, allowing for easy package removal or distribution.

Use CheckInstall instead of just running “sudo make install“, as that will likely put files all over the filesystem, with no easy way of removing them if things go wrong. If in the future you try to install a package that contains the same file as the software you are compiling, you will receive errors and the software you compiled may stop working.

(In fact, checkinstall can keep track of files modified by any command line, not just a “make install“, so you can use it for any type of installation task outside of apt, and it will keep track of the installation in the package manager.)


aptitude install checkinstall


Instead of:

make install



When called with no arguments, checkinstall will call “make install“. If you need other arguments, they can be supplied:

checkinstall make install_package

The installed package can then also easily be removed:

dpkg -r <package>

Use CheckInstall with auto-apt

You can use auto-apt when you want to build a simple package from source with checkinstall. You need to have auto-apt installed!
Instead of:



auto-apt run ./configure

If the dependencies are available, a dialog box opens and ask you to install them
The rest remains the same:

make checkinstall

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