This tutorial is aimed at all users of Ubuntu who need to install a program of software suite but are limited to the command line interface. This command line program installation can prove to be quite the daunting feat, although you have nothing to fear as it is one of the easiest thing you will ever do. Read below to find out how you can install a program using the command line interface in Ubuntu in mere seconds.

The first thing you must do is open the “Terminal” or “Command Prompt”.


Once the command line has opened you must give the command line the command appropriate to the package you are trying to install.


For example, to install the “Mozilla Firefox” web browser, you must enter the code shown below directly into the command line:

sudo apt-get install firefox


Another example is, say you would like to install the “VLC” media player, which is a powerful and highly customizable media player, you would enter the code shown below directly into the command line:

sudo apt-get install vlc


Another example is, say you would like to install the “Mozilla Firefox” web browser and the “VLC” media player, without having to enter the “sudo apt-get install” command twice and having to leave and return to your computer in wait of the first installation to complete. To install both the “Mozilla Firefox” web browser as well as the “VLC” media player in on simple line of code, you would type the command below directly into the command line:

sudo apt-get install firefox vlc


You will notice that in the code shown above to perform a combined installation of a web browser as well as a media player, that there is only one line of code. This is very convenient if you would like to commit to another task whilst the program installs itself.


Note: You may be presented with a prompt before the program installs itself. The prompt will inform you of the download size of the installation package as well as a “y/n” input prompt. If you are prompted with this alert message hit the “Y” key if you feel comfortable with the download size, or “N” if you would like to proceed with the automatic installation.


Once you have accepted the installation and you have an active internet connection, you will be fronted with a dauntingly long list of complex codes and files, although there is no need to worry as this list of files is simply the name of repositories on your system currently as well as the names of files which are being downloaded as well as names of files which are about to be installed.


After a certain amount of time, which shouldn’t be long depending on the size of the software you are downloading, the download will be complete. You are able to tell when the download is complete when the text stops scrolling and you are now presented with a login name and a flashing cursor which should appear similar to the text shown below:

root@ubuntu: _    <- the underscore will be flashing and the “root” may be your login name.


You will now notice that if you open the “start” button on your Ubuntu taskbar, your new program will be listed in the menu alongside its icon. You will now be able to click the icon and the software will open depending on the configurations of your system, the integrity of your installation and downloaded repositories, as well as the environmental variables involved in the installation and current running environment of the computer, of which you have installed this software onto.

Congratulations! You have just installed your first program via the command line in Ubuntu. This was once a difficult and seemingly impossible thing to do right? Well it isn’t anymore! Enjoy your newfound Ubuntu software installation knowledge.