How to Install Eclipse 3.4 (Ganymede) on Ubuntu / Linux

Eclipse is leading open source development environments for Java, with support for JEE and JME development and entire ecosystem of plugins that makes it suitable for any software development task.

At the moment of writing, Ubuntu repositories contain Eclipse 3.2.2 while latest release is version 3.4.1. If one wants to stay current with Eclipse version, it has to be installed manually.

Note: manually installed Eclipse will not be managed by apt, Debian package managing tool, so user has to take care of updates.

When installing from distributable archives, Eclipse has only dependency – Java JDK. In this example I will use Sun JDK. To verify which Java has been installed, type in terminal:

java -version

To install it Sun’s JDK ver 6, issue the following command:

apt-get install sun-java6-jdk

Eclipse Installation

Eclipse, both 32 and 64 bit can be downloaded from

In this example, we’ll install Eclipse Ganymede 3.4.1. Please verify current version when installing it and adjust URLs and commands accordingly.

When download finishes, we’ll uncompress the archive. Here I suppose that archive is saved in user’s home directory. If file name changed since moment of writing, modify command line accordingly.

tar -xzvf eclipse-jee-ganymede-SR1-linux-gtk.tar.gz

This will create directory /home/[USER_NAME]/eclipse

switch to the eclipse directory:

cd ~/eclipse

and start eclipse:


If you would like to start Eclipse in background, type

nohup ./eclipse &


That’s it – Eclipse is ready to use. You could add Eclipse to the programs menu, so that in future you don’t need to start Eclipse from command line.


30 responses to “How to Install Eclipse 3.4 (Ganymede) on Ubuntu / Linux

  1. Thanks for the instructions, pretty straight forward. I am using Kubuntu and to add Eclipse to the programs menu, I did the following:
    Right click on the K icon menu at the left bottom, selected Menu Editor and then added a new item to the Development Group.

  2. Where is the program’s icon located to put in the menu?

  3. Did that….
    everything works.
    What I cannot find is where in the eclipse folder is the icon I can use in the menu.


  4. i hve eclipse 3.1 . before i install this eclipse do i need to uninstall the old one?

    • No you don’t need to uninstall the old one – just install new Eclipse in separate directory. If you use same directory for workspace, project information will be updated if needed. Pay attention to install any custom plugins you might have in Eclipse 3.1 if you want to use them in new install.

  5. in ubuntu you have to go to System -> Preferences -> Main Menu and it will open the main menu configuration window. You go down to programming on the left side, and check the program you want to be displayed in your menu in the right side.

  6. Thanks for the walkthrough! I’m an Eclipse veteran but new to Linux and tar.

  7. I followed the above instructions, but when launching eclipse, I get the splash screen with a progress bar, then it goes away, and I get a dialogue box titled ‘eclipse’ that is empty and just sits there.

    • newsintegrator

      In working Eclipse installation, after splash screen comes dialog that offers us to choose workspace folder. What is JDK version that you have installed? If it is not Sun’s JDK, install it using: sudo apt-get install sun-java6-jdk or sudo apt-get install sun-java5-jdk and then try to run Eclipse again.

  8. An Eclipse icon at least for version 3.4.4 can be found under [install_dir]/features/org.eclipse.platform[version]/eclipse_update_120.jpg

  9. don@mekong:~/Desktop$ sudo apt-get install sun-java6-jdk
    [sudo] password for don:
    Reading package lists… Done
    Building dependency tree
    Reading state information… Done
    sun-java6-jdk is already the newest version.
    0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.

  10. i have a problem my eclipse don’t start after download finished

  11. i resove with this information

    • I have installed eclipse on Ubuntu. but when i run it , it gives the following error
      Java Runtime Environment (JRE) or Java Development Kit (JDK)
      must be available in order to run Eclipse. No Java virtual machine
      was found after searching the following locations:
      java in your current PATH

      I have my JRE installed in /usr/java/jre1.6.0_13 .
      Please help

  12. I have the same problem

  13. Hi,
    Whenever i try to save my application, it is giving Null pointer exeception.
    Details abt the environment:
    Ubuntu : Jaunty
    Eclipse ganymede: 3.4.2

    Can u help me in this regards

    • Hi,

      I had once same problem with MyEclipse IDE on Windows. I do not remember what fixed it, but try creating new workspace.

      Hope this helps,


  14. I get the same as Don.

    “I followed the above instructions, but when launching eclipse, I get the splash screen with a progress bar, then it goes away, and I get a dialogue box titled ‘eclipse’ that is empty and just sits there.”

  15. Hi there.
    Great installation help…thanks, fixed my problem.
    Anyone reading this guys stuff should bookmark it.

  16. One way to find out if you have Java installed and accessible is by running the ‘which java’ command. See below:
    linux@holistic25:~/eclipse> which java
    which: no java in (/home/linux/bin:/usr/local/bin:/usr/bin:/usr/X11R6/bin:/bin:/usr/games:/opt/gnome/bin:/opt/kde3/bin:/usr/lib/mit/bin:/usr/lib/mit/sbin:/home/linux/jdk1.5.0_20)

    Here’s something that I did to get it to work on my end: On Linux, you need to set the JAVA_HOME and then append the JAVA_HOME/bin to your PATH. For example, the .bashrc in my case looks like this:
    export JAVA_HOME=/home/linux/jdk1.5.0_20
    export PATH=$PATH:$JAVA_HOME/bin

    Now the result of ‘which java’ is as follows:
    linux@holistic25:~/eclipse> which java

    Subsequently, I do not get the eclipse errors any more and can launch it successfully (mainly because I can now find the java installed on my machine).

    Hope this helps others running into similar none.

  17. I get the same as Don and Walter and I have Java 6 from Sun already installed…. :

    “I followed the above instructions, but when launching eclipse, I get the splash screen with a progress bar, then it goes away, and I get a dialogue box titled ‘eclipse’ that is empty and just sits there.”

  18. Thanks for easy step to insatll Eclipse on Linux. I followed the above instruction and it worked fine. Except when I start the ./eclipse I got this below error:
    Warning: -XX:MaxPermSize=256m not understood. Ignoring.
    Warning: -Xms40m not understood. Ignoring.

    Then I used this below command to start eclipse:
    ./eclipse -vm /usr/java/jre1.6.0_20/bin

    It worked perfectly.

    It has been described in details here


    Binod Suman

  19. Thanks alot. really helpful

  20. Hi, thanks for the guids.
    But how can I put the eclipse in the program menu? I mean Applications>…> eclipse

  21. ya it is easy to understand.

  22. wow very simple explanation

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