Installing latest Wireshark on Ubuntu / Linux (Build from source)

Note that even though this article discusses building Wireshark from the source and relevant installation steps, same can be applied to most of the other commonly available applications.

Sure, it is easily possible to install Wireshark (or any other common software) using the package installer that comes with OS. In Ubuntu or Debian world it is possible to simply key in “sudo apt-get install wireshark” and things should be good to go in few minutes. The problem with this approach is that Wireshark version package manager installs can be a old version. Therefore, if you need to install a latest version of a package best approach is to get the installed from Wireshark itself.

Unfortunately,  a Wireshark build for Ubuntu is not readily available in the web site. Instead it is necessary to build Wireshark from source.

Source code can be downloaded at

Once done you can follow the official documentation relevant to building Wireshark from source at

However, you will most likely encounter many problems in 3rd step of above guide. You might encounter errors similar to what is mentioned below. Once you install one missing dependency “configure” script will break in the next.

  • configure: error: I couldn’t find bison; make sure it’s installed and in your path
  • configure: error: I couldn’t find byacc; make sure it’s installed and in your path
  • configure: error: I couldn’t find yacc; make sure it’s installed and in your path
  • configure: error: I couldn’t find flex; make sure it’s installed and in your path
  • configure: error: Need a working C++ compiler to build Wireshark with Qt

Rather than going and fixing build dependencies one after another, in “apt-get” it is possible to install all the build dependencies for a given package using below command :

sudo apt-get build-dep wireshark

apt-get install build-essential checkinstall libcurl4-openssl-dev



Once all the build dependencies are installed run ./configure again. Unfortunately, in this instance it ended up with :

  • configure: error: Qt is not available

You can either run below command to install Qt5

apt-get install qt5-default

Otherwise it is possible to build Wireshark only GTK with

./configure --with-gtk2


./configure --with-gtk3

finally proceed with step 4 and 5 of official documentation..


Additional Notes:

Simulate package installation :

apt-get -s install <package>

Verbose simulate package installation :

apt-get V -s install <package>

See all possible updated in similation :

apt-get -V -s upgrade

See installed version, available candidate versions and version history of a package :

apt-cache policy firefox

List all packages with “abc” in package name

apt-cache pkgnames | grep abc

There is a good list of usefull apt-get options at :

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