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  • Ubuntu releases twice a year, with version numbers indicating the year and month of release (y.mm). Each release also has a nickname. (The first release came out in October 2004; Ubuntu 4.10 was also known as "Warty Warthog.")
  • All of Ubuntu's six-month releases receive security updates for 18 months. In addition, some releases are designated "LTS" for Long Term Support. LTS releases are officially supported with security updates (and backported to) for 3 years on the desktop, and 5 years for servers.
  • At present, GnuCash is NOT in Ubuntu's "Main" repositories, so updates must work their way through the Debian update process. Because of this situation, Ubuntu repositories usually contain a version of GnuCash that is a release or two behind the latest stable version.

Handy Links:

GnuCash package

Ubuntu has GnuCash available as a ready-to-install package. Just choose "gnucash" as a package to be installed.

More recent packages

The version of GnuCash and some of its dependencies in the official Ubuntu repositories tends to be outdated.

GnuCash @ GetDeb

The latest stable GnuCash version is usually available at GetDeb http://GetDeb.net/ which is an unofficial archive of Ubuntu-compatible packages.

Follow the instructions at GetDeb for activating the GetDeb repository on your machine. http://www.getdeb.net/updates#how_to_install

If you want to avoid updating any other applications, turn off the GetDeb repository after installing GnuCash, OR you can download just the GetDeb packages for GnuCash. If you just download the GetDeb GnuCash packages, be sure to download all three GnuCash packages to your machine so the dependencies can be met.

ALSO in early 2014 several reports indicate the GetDeb package crashes if you don't purge the original GnuCash package first.

Purging the distribution package and installing the GetDeb package

Some people on the email list have reported the original GnuCash package must be purged before using the GetDeb package. If you see crashes when starting GnuCash, try purging then installing the GetDeb package.

Enter the following commands in a terminal window:

 sudo apt-get purge gnucash
 sudo apt-get autoremove

Next enable the getdeb repository, then enter the following commands:

 sudo apt-get update
 sudo apt-get install gnucash

Trouble Reaching GetDeb?

Note that GetDeb is a volunteer effort funded and managed by a small group.

For a few months in late 2012 and early 2013 GetDeb was unavailable due to hardware failure. Sometime before 2018, GetDeb became "stale" and as of October 2018 it seems to be offline, and may be gone forever.

If you cannot reach the site you might check the Wikipedia entry (or your favorite search engine) for news: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GetDeb

If you are having trouble reaching GetDeb, here are some suggested mirror sites (article from 2010): http://www.ubuntugeek.com/getdeb-mirror-site.html

A more recent link has additional suggestions (updated 2018): https://askubuntu.com/questions/51692/what-should-i-do-when-the-getdeb-repository-is-down

AqBanking @ ppa

Similar you can get more recent versions of AqBanking via aqbanking-backports-ppa.

GnuCash @ Debian Archive

GnuCash (for Debian based distributions) can be downloaded from the Debian Archive which is primarily an archive for old distributions of Debian but also contains recent versions of GnuCash.
See http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/README.html.

As at 5th Jul 2018, the Debian Archive includes

  • GnuCash 2.6.15: should work in Ubuntu 16.04 and 16.10
  • GnuCash 3.0-1: should work in Ubuntu 18.04 (not tested)
  • GnuCash 3.2-1: unknown Ubuntu compatibility

To install:

gnucash_2.6.15-1_amd64.deb (another file may be needed if not using 64 bit Ubuntu on intel/amd)

Firefox will download to ~/Downloads

  • In a terminal
 cd ~/Downloads
 sudo dpkg -i gnucash_2.6.15-1_amd64.deb gnucash-common_2.6.15-1_all.deb
There will be complaints about some missing dependencies: libaqbanking35 etc.
  • Open Ubuntu Software Centre from the Dash.

It will say there is a problem and offer to repair it. Accept the offer. After 30 seconds or so, all the dependencies should have been installed.

Standard Ubuntu Releases of GnuCash

If you not using any other software sources, when you install GnuCash, the version you get will be the version archived for your release of Ubuntu. GnuCash is not officially maintained for Ubuntu, so it is the latest Debian version available when the Ubuntu release was "frozen" (as listed below). Depending on your version of Ubuntu, you may additionally have to manually activate the "Universe" repository (using the Software Sources application) before GnuCash is visible.

If you are using an older (such as one of the LTS versions) of Ubuntu, you may want an updated version of GnuCash from an official repository. As newer versions of GnuCash become "back-ported" to your release, you can activate the Backports repository to install the latest back-ported upgrade. (If fidelity to the rest of the supported release is important to you, also be sure to "pin" your Backports repository to a lower priority than the other repositories using an /etc/apt/preferences file, and install only the upgraded packages you use.) For more backport details see https://help.ubuntu.com/community/UbuntuBackports

Because back-ported releases come from Debian packages, even back-ported versions are usually at least a bit outdated, too. :-( If you want the latest, your best bet is to either build it yourself or use the GetDeb repository.

Ubuntu 18.10 ("Cosmic Cuttlefish")

GnuCash 3.3 is included in Ubuntu 18.10, (to be) released October 2018 http://packages.ubuntu.com/cosmic/gnome/gnucash

Ubuntu 18.04 ("Bionic Beaver")

GnuCash 2.6.19 is included in Ubuntu 18.04, released April 2018 http://packages.ubuntu.com/bionic/gnome/gnucash

Ubuntu 16.04 LTS ("Xenial Xerus")

GnuCash 2.6.12 is included in Ubuntu 16.04, released April 2016. http://packages.ubuntu.com/xenial/gnome/gnucash

Ubuntu 14.04 LTS ("Trusty Tahr")

GnuCash 2.6.1 is included in Ubuntu 14.04, released April 2014. http://packages.ubuntu.com/trusty/gnome/gnucash

Adding Shortcuts to the Unity Launcher

To create shortcuts for KDE or Standard GNOME, see Desktop Shortcuts.

From Ubuntu 11.10 to Ubuntu 16.04, default Ubuntu installations included Unity, and its Launcher, which contained a set of icons for commonly-used applications. If you regularly open more than one set of GnuCash books you can add a useful right-click menu to the GnuCash icon in the Unity Launcher to open each of your sets of books independently. (Using this method you can have multiple sets of GnuCash books open simultaneously, which you cannot do using the menu within GnuCash.) See Unity Shortcuts for details.

Build GnuCash Yourself

There are a number of reasons you may wish to build GnuCash from source including:

  • releases available with some distributions can be out of date;
  • you may require access to newer features and recent bugfixes;
  • you may wish to work on bugfixes or new features for the Gnucash code.

Building GnuCash from the sources does not require high level technical skills.

Important: If you are building GnuCash for production purposes compile only from the latest STABLE release. (The development code may have unknown errors and bugs introduced during development.)

See Building#Gnucash for detailed instructions.