How to install and start Packet Tracer in Ubuntu

This tutorial explains how to install a packet tracer on Ubuntu Linux and how to fix the startup issue of the Packet Tracer in Ubuntu. Learn to perform an error-free installation of the packet tracer.

For this tutorial, I assume that you have already downloaded the latest version of the Packet Tracer for Linux. In case you haven’t downloaded it, download it now from the following link.

Download the latest version of Packet Tracer

This article provides direct downloading links to the Cisco Packet Tracer. You can download the latest version as well as all previous versions of Packet Tracer from this page.

After downloading, open the folder that contains the downloaded file. Select the downloaded file and right-click. From the right-click menu, click on the Run option.

start installation

The installation process starts in a graphical wizard. The first screen of the wizard presents the welcome message. Click on the Next button.

welcome wizard

The next screen allows us to customize the installation directory of the Packet Tracer. Default location is the /opt/pt. Keep the default selection and click on the Next button.

If you want to install the Packet Tracer in another directory, use the Browse button to navigate the file-system and select the directory you want. But if you change the installation directory, make sure you use the changed directory path in the following steps.

installation path

The next screen displays the license agreement. Select the "I accept the license" option and click on the Next button.

license agreement

On the next screen, the installation process displays the size of the disk space that the Packet Tracer will use after the installation. Till this stage, the installation process writes nothing on the disk. So, if you want to make any change, such as changing the installation directory, use the Back button and make the necessary change.

When you are done, click the Install button.

summary screen

Any change in system settings requires super-user privileges. Type your password to authenticate the installation.

authenticate installation

The installation process usually takes less than a minute, but in some circumstances, it may take a few minutes. You can see the real-time progress of the installation.

installation running

Once the installation is complete, the wizard displays the result of the installation on the last screen. If something goes wrong during installation, the wizard displays the corresponding error message on this screen. Click the Finish button to close the wizard.

installation finish

Once the installation is complete, you can start the packet tracer in two ways. To start it from the application launcher, click on the Dash button. In the search box of the opened-pane, type "packet tracer". Click on the Packet Tracer icon from the result.

starting packet tracer from dash

To start the Packet Tracer from a terminal, use the packettracer command.

starting packet tracer from command prompt

Solving the Packet Tracer startup issue

If the Packet Tracer does not start from any of the above-mentioned methods, use the following steps to troubleshoot the startup issue.

Open a terminal and change the current directory to the installation directory (/opt/pt) of the Packet Tracer. If the installation directory contains any post-installation script, execute that.

cd /opt/pt
ls
sudo chmod +x postinstall.sh
sudo ./postinstall.sh

postinstall script

Change the current directory to the directory /opt/pt/bin and execute the launcher file of Packet Tracer directly. If the Packet Tracer does not start, the reason that blocks the Packet Tracer from starting will display on the terminal. The most common reason is the following.

Packet Tracer uses a library named libpng12.so.0 of Ubuntu. This library has been deprecated in Ubuntu. Since this library is no longer available in Ubuntu and the Packet Tracer depends on this library, the packet tracer does not start.

The following image shows the error of the missing library.

missing library

To solve this issue, we have to install the libpng12.so.0 library manually. This library is available as a package in the following repository.

http://mirrors.kernel.org/ubuntu/

This is a third-party repository and by default not available in Ubuntu. To install a package from this repository, we have to add this repository to the repository source-list.

Before we add an entry of this repository in the repository source-list, let’s take the backup of the current repository source-list.

Use the following commands to take backup and open the existing source-list file for editing.

#cp /etc/apt/ sources.list /etc/apt/sources.list.bak
#nano /etc/apt/sources.list

open source-list file for editing

Add the following lines at the end of the file and save the file.

#Manually added a source for libpng12-0 package
deb http://mirrors.kernel.org/ubuntu/ xenial main

adding repository

Run the following commands to install the libpng12.so.0 library.

#apt-get update
#apt-get install libpng12-0

The following image shows the above commands with output.

apt-get update

Now close the opened terminal and open a new terminal. In the new terminal, run the packettracer command again to verify that the Packet Tracer starts normally.

starting packet tracer

That’s all for this tutorial. If you like this tutorial, please don’t forget to share it with friends through your favorite social channel.

ComputerNetworkingNotes CCNA Study Guide How to install and start Packet Tracer in Ubuntu