I'm trying to compile Lyx 2.2 on my Debian machine from sources. As usual I run ./autogen.sh && ./configure && make, but configuration stops here

configure: error: cannot compile a simple Qt executable. Check you have the right $QTDIR.

So I've installed the qt5-default package, but it didn't solve the problem.

The $QTDIR vairable was empty, so I manually set it to /usr/bin/qmake, and /usr/bin, but none has worked, same error.

Thank you


QTDIR shouldn't really be necessary, but try setting it to /usr/share/qt5.

You could build the Debian source package instead:

sudo apt-get install devscripts dpkg-dev build-essential
sudo apt-get build-dep lyx
dget http://httpredir.debian.org/debian/pool/main/l/lyx/lyx_2.2.0-2.dsc
cd lyx-2.2.0
dpkg-buildpackage -us -uc

The first two commands install the packages necessary to build lyx; then dget downloads and extracts the source package, and dpkg-buildpackage builds it and produces a series of .deb packages you can install manually using dpkg as usual.

  • sudo apt-get build-dep lyx This actually worked! – Alex Nov 4 '16 at 14:21
./configure QTDIR=/usr/share/qt5 && make

instead of

./configure && make

worked for me

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