SlackBuild Usage HOWTO


All of our scripts are written and tested for usage on a full installation of the latest stable release of Slackware updated with the latest patches. If you're trying them on older versions of Slackware, you should read this page referenced in our FAQ.

Step 1 - Download

Download the SlackBuild archive of the application you wish to build and extract it in your build environment. For example, after extracting the chemtool.tar.gz archive, you should have the following directory tree:

  |-- README
  |-- chemtool.SlackBuild
  |-- chemtool.desktop
  |-- chemtool.png
  |-- slack-desc

Anonymous ftp access is available via if that's more convenient for you.

Next, download the source of the application from the address listed in the file and place it in the chemtool directory listed above. There is also a direct link to the source tarball on each application's page within our repository.

To verify the downloaded source's integrity, first run `md5sum chemtool-1.6.14.tar.gz' to get the MD5 sum of the downloaded source archive. Then compare it to the MD5 sum shown in the `' file. If they don't match, something is wrong. Please consult README if they have additional notes on mismatch checksums or inform the maintainer.

Step 2 - Read the README

It is important to read the README before building any script. Some maintainers put notes in the README file about optional dependencies, available build options, warning about potential conflict with Slackware packages, steps to be taken before building the package and after installing the package, and many other things that relates to the script.

Some scripts have README.SBo or README.Slackware to accomodate long notes.

Step 3 - Edit SlackBuild script if necessary

If your version of chemtool is newer than what is specified in the SlackBuild script, you will need to change the script accordingly. Using your preferred editor, open the chemtool.SlackBuild script and find the line which starts with "VERSION"


Change this line to reflect the current version of the chemtool source.

  • If a newer version of some application does not compile correctly with a simple change of the "VERSION" string, let us know by following the instructions on reporting SlackBuild Bugs.

Step 4 - Execute the SlackBuild Script (as root)

Make the script executable with chmod if necessary:

chmod +x chemtool.SlackBuild

Then run the script:


Note that for many builds, you will need to have a true login shell in order to have a correctly populated environment. Among other things, /usr/share/texmf/bin will not be in your PATH if you simply do "su" -- therefore, you will need to either use "su -l" when switching to root, or source the /etc/profile script after doing "su", or perhaps modifying /root/.bashrc to include necessary PATH elements.

Step 5 - Install the Package

Assuming everything happened according to plan (the compile finished without errors), the finished package should be in the directory declared as "OUTPUT" in the SlackBuild script (this defaults to the /tmp directory). Use installpkg to install it; you'll probably want to move it to some other location for safekeeping after it's installed.

Other Resources

For more information on using, editing, and creating SlackBuild scripts, have a look at these and other tutorials at

© 2006-2023 Project. All rights reserved.
Slackware® is a registered trademark of Patrick Volkerding
Linux® is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds