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SDL (Simple DirectMedia Layer) is a multi-platform multimedia library used by many app/game developers in creating emulators, games, MPEG playback software, etc. Also, when installing some games or software requiring SDL under Ubuntu, you may get these errors while compiling them:

configure: error: *** SDL version 1.2.0 not found! 
configure: error: *** SDL_image library not found! 
configure: error: *** SDL_mixer library not found!
configure: error: *** SDL_net library not found!

As this library is written in C++, you need to install first compiling packages under Ubuntu with this command:

sudo apt-get install build-essential

Now follow all these steps to install SDL 1.2 and its related libraries:

1. SDL Installation

To install latest version of SDL (1.2, SDL 1.3 is still under development), run this sequence of commands from the terminal:

wget -O SDL-1.2.14.tar.gz  http://goo.gl/ByL0B


tar -xzvf SDL-1.2.14.tar.gz -C ~/ && cd SDL-1.2.14


./configure && make


sudo make install

2. SDL_image 1.2 Installation

Via the terminal, run the following commands:

wget -O SDL_image-1.2.11.tar.gz http://goo.gl/98zi6


tar -xzvf SDL_image-1.2.11.tar.gz -C ~/ && cd SDL_image-1.2.11


./configure && make


sudo make install

3. SDL_mixer 1.2 Installation

Run the following commands:

wget -O SDL_mixer-1.2.12.tar.gz http://goo.gl/o0GIX


tar -xzvf SDL_mixer-1.2.12.tar.gz -C ~/ && cd SDL_mixer-1.2.12


./configure && make


sudo make install

4. SDL_net 1.2 Installation

Issue these commands:

wget -O SDL_net-1.2.8.tar.gz http://goo.gl/AQuv5


tar -xzvf SDL_net-1.2.8.tar.gz -C ~/ && cd SDL_net-1.2.8


./configure && make


sudo make install

The SDL library is now compiled and installed on your system. Tested under Ubuntu 11.10/11.04.

That's it!

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