Chapter 2. Building and Installing Wireshark

Table of Contents

2.1. Introduction
2.2. Obtaining the source and binary distributions
2.3. Installing Wireshark under Windows
2.3.1. Installation Components
2.3.2. Additional Tasks
2.3.3. Install Location
2.3.4. Installing WinPcap
2.3.5. Windows installer command line options
2.3.6. Manual WinPcap Installation
2.3.7. Update Wireshark
2.3.8. Update WinPcap
2.3.9. Uninstall Wireshark
2.3.10. Uninstall WinPcap
2.4. Installing Wireshark under OS X
2.5. Building Wireshark from source under UNIX
2.6. Installing the binaries under UNIX
2.6.1. Installing from RPM’s under Red Hat and alike
2.6.2. Installing from deb’s under Debian, Ubuntu and other Debian derivatives
2.6.3. Installing from portage under Gentoo Linux
2.6.4. Installing from packages under FreeBSD
2.7. Troubleshooting during the install on Unix
2.8. Building from source under Windows

2.1. Introduction

As with all things there must be a beginning and so it is with Wireshark. To use Wireshark you must first install it. If you are running Windows or OS X you can download an official release at, install it, and skip the rest of this chapter.

If you are running another operating system such as Linux or FreeBSD you might want to install from source. Several Linux distributions offer Wireshark packages but they commonly ship out-of-date versions. No other versions of UNIX ship Wireshark so far. For that reason, you will need to know where to get the latest version of Wireshark and how to install it.

This chapter shows you how to obtain source and binary packages and how to build Wireshark from source should you choose to do so.

The following are the general steps you would use:

  1. Download the relevant package for your needs, e.g. source or binary distribution.
  2. Compile the source into a binary if needed. This may involve building and/or installing other necessary packages.
  3. Install the binaries into their final destinations.