How To Install Spack on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

Install Spack on Ubuntu 20.04

In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Spack on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Spack is a package manager for supercomputers, Linux, and macOS. Its advantages are that Spack is not tied to a specific language; you can create a software stack in Python or R, link to libraries written in C, C ++, or Fortran. It supports MAST (Multidisciplinary-design Adaptation and Sensitivity Toolkit) and also PNGwriter.

This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step installation of the Spack on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.


  • A server running one of the following operating systems: Ubuntu 20.04, 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.
  • It’s recommended that you use a fresh OS install to prevent any potential issues.
  • A non-root sudo user or access to the root user. We recommend acting as a non-root sudo user, however, as you can harm your system if you’re not careful when acting as the root.

Install Spack on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa

Step 1. First, make sure that all your system packages are up-to-date by running the following apt commands in the terminal.

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade
sudo apt install build-essential

Step 2. Installing Spack on Ubuntu 20.04.

Now we download Spack from the Github repository:

git clone ~/.spack/Spack

Once you have cloned Spack, it recommends sourcing the appropriate script for the shell:

. ~/.spack/Spack/share/spack/

Next, to enable you to use the spack command every time you log in, add this command to ~ /.bash_profile exactly as shown below:

echo ‘. ~/.spack/Spack/share/spack/’ >> ~/.bash_profile

After that, you can log out of the system so that the changes are saved and take effect. You can check the Spack installation using the command that will be displayed below:

spack -V

Step 3. Using Spack on Ubuntu.

The tool is quite simple to use, to install a program you just need to run:

spack install [program_name]


spack install pngwriter

Congratulations! You have successfully installed Spack. Thanks for using this tutorial for installing the Spack on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa system. For additional help or useful information, we recommend you check the official Spack website.

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r00t is a seasoned Linux system administrator with a wealth of experience in the field. Known for his contributions to, r00t has authored numerous tutorials and guides, helping users navigate the complexities of Linux systems. His expertise spans across various Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, CentOS, and Debian. r00t's work is characterized by his ability to simplify complex concepts, making Linux more accessible to users of all skill levels. His dedication to the Linux community and his commitment to sharing knowledge makes him a respected figure in the field.
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