Installation of AstroImageJ on a Linux Operating System

This page is to help with installing the latest version of AstroImageJ on Linux operating systems. The files linked from the server are complete and do not require a previous installation of ImageJ, AstroImageJ, or other software to run. These instructions should work on any Linux distribution. They have been tested most recently with OpenSUSE Leap.

If you already have installed version 2.0 of AIJ or later, simply use the update option on the AIJ toolbar 'Help' menu to have the most recent version. The user will need write permission to the directory where the software is installed to use this feature.

To search for specific information, receive help from other users, or offer advice please see the

AstroImageJ user forum on nabble

Follow these steps to install AstroImageJ so that it is available system wide to any user.

  1. Download the latest installation files into a convenient directory.
  2. As root user, e.g with "su" or "sudo"
  3. Continuing as root user, if you already have AstroImageJ installed in /usr/local change it to a backup name such as AstroImageJ_old using
  4. As root user untar the archives into /usr/local/ and clean up with commands like these
  5. As root user you can check that AstroImageJ has been created in /usr/local with
  6. If you want ownership so that you alone can do the updates, then change the owner of the AstroImageJ directory to your own user name. If you leave it with root ownership, you will have to run as root to do routine updates and this is not recommended. You may assign ownership to any user and run it as another user. This change is for software maintenance.
  7. As root user go to /usr/local/bin, untar the scripts, add a convenient soft link, and clean up
  8. You may return to being a normal user now and try out AstroImageJ. Assuming /usr/local/bin is in your search path
  9. If there is a problem, try using the full path /usr/local/bin/aij to see if the software is working. The command echo $PATH will show the default path for your system. You may need to add /usr/local/bin/ if you are using a system that has only the basic software packages and is not yet set up for customization.

That's it! AIJ should now start up normally for any user on your system. After installation you should allocate the memory your users will need, and check for AstroImageJ updates. Both of these can be done at any time, and the updates will keep your installation current with bug fixes and new features. Since Linux is a multi-user system, if you anticipate several users running AIJ simultaneously you may need to adjust the memory made available to one instance accordingly.

AstroImageJ will run with either the Sun or OpenJDK Java packages. For OpenSUSE we find that the default OS installation with OpenJDK works fine. The script astroimage you installed above is used to set the initial memory allocation and may need fine tuning.

cd /usr/local/AstroImageJ/
java -Xmx32768m -jar /usr/local/AstroImageJ/ij.jar

It is set for a large memory machine by the -Xmx32768m entry in the script. You can change the allocation from 32 GB as it is here, to smaller amounts without issues other than to hold large stacks of images. The size will be limited by the memory in your computer for 64-bit Java.

While this is not recently tested, some installations of the KDE and Gnome window managers allow the user to control the double click timeout. However, they do not convey this to the X11 display software, so Java applications and many other programs that rely on X11 may default to a 200 millisecond timeout that is too short for most users. The solution is to add the following line to either /etc/X11/Xresources (the system wide default in OpenSUSE), or add it to a user basis to .Xresources in each user's home directory

*multiClickTime: 500

The change will take effect when X is started the next time. This is not necessary with the lightweight xfce window manager.