Celestia/Installation

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Introduction[edit]

You can easily install Celestia on computers running Windows, MacOS or Linux. If you are experienced in compiling programs from source code, you can also install it on computers running other operating systems.

The current version of Celestia is available at the download page on the Celestia Web site. The links on that page actually point to files in Celestia's repository on SourceForge.

Older versions of Celestia are also available from SourceForge.

Prereleases of the next version of Celestia used to be announced on the Celestia Web Forum in its Users Forum, but the forum no longer exists. If you build Celestia from source code, you can generate a pre-release of Celestia v1.7 which is quite stable.

Windows[edit]

If you have downloaded the Windows version of the Celestia installation executable, then you simply need to run the .EXE file that you downloaded. It will install Celestia wherever you specify.

Although it was originally written for Windows XP, Celestia works fine when installed in any later version of Windows, from Vista through Windows 10.

A few words of caution to Windows Vista users, however... (These may also apply to Windows 7.)

If you run the setup program as a Windows XP-compatible application, you'll find that the program runs fine and that Celestia operates as it should. You can also run the Celestia executable in the native Windows Vista mode too.

Savvy Windows XP users will find that there are a lot of things to get used to in the XP-compatible mode though. If you modify a planet texture, for example, you may find that your modified texture was NOT saved to the Celestia program directory where you got it from originally.

Vista likes to create shortcuts to modified textures, and these - for some reason - aren't readily available to the Celestia program. If you're using Windows Explorer to view the Celestia texture files, click on the "Compatibility Files" area at the top of your screen to see your modified texture. If you like, you can then copy and/or move the new texture to the C:\Program Files\Celestia\textures directory of your choice.


Recommendations:

Vista users should install Celestia as a native Vista program. When Celestia is installed as a previous version of Windows-compatible program, it simply causes more problems than it solves.

Vista and later versions of Windows, including Win7 through Win10, are particularly protective of software installed in the Program Files directory tree. You will have far fewer problems if you install Celestia somewhere else. You could, for example, create the directory C:\MyPrograms\ and install Celestia there. The installation program lets you browse to wherever you want to install it.

MacOS[edit]

Celestia is provided for Mac OS in a disk image. Once you have downloaded the file, simply open it and then copy the application file "Celestia" from the window that shows up to the "Applications" folder, as for most applications in the Mac OS.

Linux[edit]

Every Linux distro does things a bit differently but the major ones do have some version of Celestia in their software repos.
For example:

fedora -- "yum install celestia"
-- but this is WITHOUT spice support

OpenSUSE -- "zypper in celestia"
-- also WITHOUT spice support

Debian -- "apt-get install celestia"

To be sure you have the most recent version of Celestia, you should consider building your own copy from source. Then consider contributing your results to the appropriate repo. Many repos have OLD versions in them since nobody has contributed an updated version. Some of the repos even have Celestia v1.5 in them. Celestia v1.6.1 was the last officially released version. If you build from source, you can generate a pre-release of v1.7, which is quite stable.

Few repos, if any, provide Celestia with SPICE support, so NO spice kernels will work if you install Celestia from an rpm or deb or xz.
Also there ARE NO prebuilt packages using qt 4 for KDE4, so no kde4 /qt 4 prebuilt rpm's, or deb's or xz's.

In the case of Ubuntu and other Debian derivatives, Celestia is split into free and non-free versions because of their strict interpretation of how licensing should be handled. Both are needed for Celestia to work properly.

Building from sourcecode[edit]

See Celestia/Development