Readers of the German computer magazine c't can download a free (as in beer, for private usage) version of LabVIEW 6.1 (see

Installation on Ubuntu

The download is a zip-file. Unzip it with Archive Manager or on the command line:

unzip -x
cd LabVIEW61Linux/

Convert the included .rpm packages to .deb packages:

sudo apt-get install alien fakeroot
fakeroot alien labview61-app-6.1-1.i386.rpm
fakeroot alien labview61-rte-6.1-1.i386.rpm       

(repeat for all the .rpm files you would like to install) You can now install the new .deb files by double-clicking on them, or on the command line:

sudo dpkg -i labview61-app_6.1-2_i386.deb
sudo dpkg -i labview61-rte_6.1-2_i386.deb

You can now throw away the rpm files or the whole LabVIEW61Linux directory. You may want to keep your new .deb files in case you need to reinstall or use them on another Ubuntu/Debian computer.

Post-installation configuration scripts

If you add --scripts to the alien commands above, it will translate the post-installation scripts from the .rpm packages into your .deb packages. However these scripts are not "clean" so I can't recommend them. For basic usage they are not needed. You can extract their contents and if needed do the steps manually like this:

rpm --queryformat "%{POSTIN}" -qp labview61-rte-6.1-1.i386.rpm

Starting LabVIEW

Start LabVIEW from the command line with:

LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/local/lv61/linux /usr/local/lv61/labview

You can also create a desktop file with this contents:

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Labview 6.1
Exec=env LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/local/lv61/linux /usr/local/lv61/labview

(or just download this desktop file: Labview6.1.desktop)

Typical problems

If LabVIEW crashes when it loads, it's most likely this issue: Why Do I Get Segmentation Fault Errors When Installing LabVIEW 7.1 and Earlier on Linux? or LabVIEW 6.1 Running on Linux Kernel 2.6 Hangs at Startup Screen

Basically, run this command (replace /dev/hda1 with the disks where you have LabVIEW installed, or that LabVIEW will use):

sudo tune2fs -O "^dir_index" /dev/hda1

This will turn off an optimization for directories with huge numbers of files, but it shouldn't matter for desktop computers.

Alternatively, for people who can't or don't want to change the file system options, one can compile the wrapper from the mailing post of Theodore Ts'o, and start LabVIEW like this:

LD_PRELOAD=./ LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/local/lv61/linux /usr/local/lv61/labview

The wrapper reorders directory entries from readdir so that LabVIEW doesn't crash (in particular, "." and ".." come first).

Package overview

  • labview61-app: Contains the LabVIEW executable, support files necessary for proper operation, and the standard VI (Virtual Instrument) library, including support for serial, TCP/IP, GPIB, and VISA. Also includes tools for building Code Interface Nodes (CIN's) for calling external code from LabVIEW.

  • labview61-desktop: LabVIEW icons and MIME config files for use under the KDE or GNOME desktop environments.

  • labview61-examples: Contains a variety of example VI's which demonstrate various aspects of programming in G, and the Activity directory for use with the LabVIEW Tutorial.

  • labview61-help: Contains LabVIEW on-line help files and the HyperHelp viewer licensed from Bristol Technology.

  • labview61-pro: Contains tools for large LabVIEW application development, such as the LabVIEW Source Code Control toolkit, a VI Documentation tool, a tool for obtaining VI Metrics, and a tool for comparing VI's or hierarchies of VI's (a graphical "differ").

  • labview61-ref: Contains the following LabVIEW manuals in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) format: LabVIEW User Manual, QuickStart Guide, Upgrade Notes, G Programming Reference Manual, CIN Reference Manual, VXI Reference Manual, and LabVIEW Function and VI Reference Manual. Not all manuals may be applicable to all platforms (e.g. NI-DAQ is not supported in Linux.) These manuals are readable using the Adobe Acrobat Reader, available on the CD in the acrobat subdirectory, or on Adobe's Web site at If 'acroread' is in your path, you may launch the browser directly from LabVIEW via the help menu.

  • labview61-rt: Allows the user to build stand-alone applications using LabVIEW.

  • labview61-rte: Run-time libraries required to run LabVIEW or LabVIEW-built stand-alone applications.

  • labview61-vxi: Contains LabVIEW support for NI-VXI.

  • nicvirte: The National Instruments LabWindows/CVI Run-Time Engine for Linux.

  • nivisa: NI-VISA is a shared library which provides an abtraction layer allowing access to GPIB/IEEE-488.2, Serial, VXI, and MXI resources attached to the computer. Applications such as LabVIEW can load this library dynamically the first time a VISA resource is accessed.

  • nivisaserver: NI-VISA server allows access to local VISA resources via Ethernet. Other machines can access local resources like they were their own. Access privileges can be set using the Visaconf application.


LabVIEW (last edited 2008-08-06 16:22:55 by localhost)