Install 32 bit packages on 64 bit system

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The information in this article pertains to 64 bit version of SimplyMEPIS

Some software is not available in 64 bit variant, to install a 32 bit package use this command:

dpkg --force-architecture -i packagename.deb

Some programs can work when installed like this, however if the program depends on some 32 bit libraries this command is not sufficient. Do a search in Synaptic for ia32 and install all the packages you can find, install also libc6-i386 package. This however might not solve the problem completely, to find out which libraries are still missing use this command:

ldd /usr/bin/programname

Look in the output for something like:

libdbus-1.so.3 => not found

(If you get "not a dynamic executable" see the last paragraph of this article)

For MEPIS 6.x-- If some libraries are missing search for them at: packages.ubuntu.com, using the "Search the contents of packages" search box. (Search for Dapper version for MEPIS 6.x)

For MEPIS 7.0 and MEPIS 8.0 -- Search for missing libraries at: www.debian.org/distrib/packages, using the "Search the contents of packages" search box." (Search for "stable" packages for MEPIS 7 and "testing" for MEPIS 8)

If you find a package for 64 bit as in this example install that package from 64 bit repos (using Synaptic or apt-get), however if you don't find a 64 bit package that contains that library, download the i386 package and unzip it with this command:

dpkg-deb -x packagename.deb ~/Desktop/unpacked

That will create an unpacked folder on your Desktop with the content of the .deb file. Go down the path to ~/Desktop/unpacked/usr/lib and copy the files from that directory to the /lib32 directory. Run again the ldd command to make sure that all the libraries needed are installed.


Attention: sometimes /usr/bin/programname is only a symlink or a launching script, you need to look for the actual binary program file, for example in case of Opera (this is only presented only as an example, Opera does have a 64 bit package) that is in /usr/lib/opera/9.22-20070716.6/opera and you can find that if you examine the /usr/bin/opera script. In this case you need to run the ldd command like this:

ldd /usr/lib/opera/9.22-20070716.6/opera
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