Projects/Edu/KStars/Building KStars KF5

This page is a community effort to document the procedure to build the KDE Frameworks 5 version of KStars on various platforms and environments. We have a separate page for the old KDE4 version.

Why build from source?

Typically, you would want to build KStars from source if you plan to develop KStars, or stay on the bleeding edge and contribute valuable feedback.

Integrated Development Environment (IDE)

If you plan to develop KStars, it is highly recommended to utilize an IDE. You can use any IDE of your choice, but QtCreator or KDevelop are recommended as they are more suited for Qt/KDE development.

Prerequisite Packages

To build and develop KStars, several packages may be required from your distribution. Here's a list.

Required dependencies

  • GNU Make, GCC -- Essential tools for building
  • cmake -- buildsystem used by KDE
  • Qt Library > 5.2.0
  • Several KDE Frameworks: KConfig, KDocTools, KGuiAddons, KWidgetsAddons, KNewStuff, KI18n, KInit, KIO, KXmlGui, KPlotting, KIconThemes
  • eigen -- linear algebra library
  • zlib -- compression library

Optional dependencies

  • libcfitsio -- FITS library
  • libindi -- Instrument Neutral Distributed Interface, for controlling equipment.
  • xplanet

Installing these packages

To install all of these, use the following commands:

Debian / Kubuntu

sudo apt-get install build-essential cmake git libeigen3-dev libcfitsio-dev zlib1g-dev libindi-dev extra-cmake-modules libkf5plotting-dev libqt5svg5-dev libkf5iconthemes-dev libkf5xmlgui-dev kio-dev kinit-dev libkf5newstuff-dev kdoctools-dev libkf5notifications-dev qtdeclarative5-dev libkf5crash-dev gettext

Arch Linux

Warning: this list looks incomplete.

   sudo pacman -S eigen libindi wcslib cmake kf5 extra-cmake-modules


   yum install cfitsio-devel eigen3-devel cmake extra-cmake-modules.noarch kf5-kconfig-devel kf5-kdbusaddons-devel kf5-kdoctools-devel kf5-kguiaddons-devel kf5-ki18n-devel kf5-kiconthemes-devel kf5-kinit-devel kf5-kio-devel kf5-kjobwidgets-devel kf5-knewstuff-devel kf5-kplotting-devel kf5-ktexteditor-devel kf5-kwidgetsaddons-devel kf5-kwindowsystem-devel kf5-kxmlgui-devel libindi-devel libindi-static qt5-qtdeclarative-devel qt5-qtmultimedia-devel qt5-qtsvg-devel wcslib-devel xplanet zlib-devel

Documentation on building various versions


KStars development happens on KDE's git repository. (Git is an open-source version control software.). The code on git is the bleeding-edge developers' version of KStars. It it mostly stable, but occasionally breaks.

  1. Create and change into a KDE development directory:
  mkdir ~/kde && cd ~/kde
  1. Fetch the KStars source code:
  git clone git://
  1. Create and change into a build directory for compilation:
  mkdir build && cd build
  1. Run the configure process with cmake:
  cmake ../kstars -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=/usr
  1. Compile KStars:

6) Install KStars:

  make install

That’s all! This installs KStars globally, so if you have an existing KStars, it will overwrite it.

You can keep your copy up-to-date by typing `git pull --rebase` in ~/kde/kstars. Feel free to send patches to our mailing list [email protected] And join #kde-kstars on :–)

This page was last edited on 15 September 2019, at 07:02. Content is available under Creative Commons License SA 4.0 unless otherwise noted.