Google Earth for Linux appears to be largely abandoned by Google, unfortunately. The packages available for download cannot be installed on a modern amd64 Debian or Ubuntu system due to dependency issues.
In fact, the adm64 version is a 32 bit build, too. The packages are really low quality, the dependencies are outdated, locales support is busted etc.
So here are hacky instructions how to install nevertheless. But beware, these instructions are a really bad hack.
- These instructions are appropriate for version 126.96.36.1991-r0. Do not use them for any other version. Things will have changed.
- Make sure your system has i386 architecture enabled. Follow the instructions in section “Configuring architectures” on the Debian MultiArch Wiki page to do so
lsb-core, and try to install the i386 versions of these packages, too!
- Download the i386 version of the Google Earth package
- Install the package by forcing dependencies, via
sudo dpkg --force-depends -i google-earth-stable_current_i386.deb
- As of now, your package manager will complain, and suggest to remove
the package again. To make it happy, we have to hack the installed
packages list. This is ugly, and you should make a backup. You can
totally bust your system this way… Fortunately, the change we’re doing
is rather simple. As admin, edit the file
/var/lib/dpkg/status. Locate the section
Package: google-earth-stable. In this section, delete the line starting with
Depends:. Don’t add in extra newlines or change anything else!
- Now the package manager should believe the dependencies of Google Earth are fulfilled, and no longer suggest removal. But essentially this means you have to take care of them yourself!
Some notes on using Google Earth:
- Locales are busted. Use
LC_NUMERIC=en_US.UTF-8 google-earthto start it. Otherwise, it will fail parsing coordinates, if you are in a locale that uses a different number format.
- You may need to install the i386 versions of some libraries, in particular of your OpenGL drivers! I cannot provide you with a complete list.
- Search doesn’t work sometimes for me.
- Occassionally, it reports “unknown” network errors.
- If you upgrade Nvidia graphics drivers, you will usually have to reboot, or you will see graphics errors.
- Some people have removed/replaced the bundled
libfreeimage*libraries, but that did not work for me.