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How To Install Doxygen on Ubuntu 20.04

Ubuntu 14

Doxygen is a popular documentation system that allows you to generate documentation from annotated C++ sources. This tutorial will guide you through the process of installing Doxygen on Ubuntu 20.04.

Quick Answer

To install Doxygen on Ubuntu 20.04, you have two options. The simplest method is to install it from the Ubuntu repository using the sudo apt-get install doxygen command. If you need a specific or the latest version, you can download it from the official Doxygen website and install it manually by extracting the package and placing the executable(s) in a directory in your system’s PATH.


Before we begin, ensure that you have a working Ubuntu 20.04 LTS system. You should have administrative privileges (sudo access) to execute commands.

Installation Methods

There are two primary methods to install Doxygen on Ubuntu 20.04:

  1. Install from Ubuntu repository
  2. Install from downloaded package

Let’s delve into each method in detail.

Install from Ubuntu Repository

This is the simplest method. Doxygen is available in the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS repository.

Step 1: Update Your System

First, open the terminal and update your system with the following command:

sudo apt-get update

This command will fetch the latest updates from the Ubuntu repositories.

Step 2: Install Doxygen

Next, install Doxygen by running:

sudo apt-get install doxygen

This command will install Doxygen along with all its dependencies.

Install from Downloaded Package

If you need a specific version of Doxygen or the latest version that may not be available in the Ubuntu repository, you can download it from the official Doxygen website and install it manually.

Step 1: Download Doxygen

Head over to the Doxygen download page and download the compressed tar file for the version you need (e.g., “doxygen-1.8.20.linux.bin.tar.gz”).

Step 2: Extract the Package

Once the download is complete, extract the contents of the tar file using the following command:

tar -xf doxygen-1.8.20.linux.bin.tar.gz

Step 3: Install Doxygen

Place the extracted executable(s) in a directory, preferably one that is in your system’s PATH. For instance, you can place them in /usr/local/bin using the command:

sudo mv doxygen-1.8.20 /usr/local/bin

Step 4: Update Your PATH

If necessary, add the directory to your system’s PATH variable to make the executables accessible from anywhere. You can do this by editing the ~/.bashrc file and adding the following line:

export PATH=$PATH:/usr/local/bin

Then, apply the changes with the command:

source ~/.bashrc


That’s it! You have successfully installed Doxygen on Ubuntu 20.04. Now you can start generating documentation for your C++ projects. Remember, the version in the Ubuntu repository may not always be the latest. If you require a specific version, use the manual installation method.

For more information on how to use Doxygen, refer to the official Doxygen documentation.

Can I use Doxygen to generate documentation for languages other than C++?

Yes, Doxygen can be used to generate documentation for a variety of programming languages, including C, Objective-C, C#, Java, Python, and more. It supports a wide range of programming languages and can be customized to suit your specific requirements.

How do I generate documentation using Doxygen?

To generate documentation using Doxygen, you need to create a configuration file (typically named Doxyfile) that specifies the settings and options for the documentation generation process. Once you have a configuration file, you can run Doxygen with the command doxygen <config_file>. Doxygen will then parse your source code, extract the documentation comments, and generate the documentation in the specified output format.

What output formats does Doxygen support?

Doxygen supports various output formats, including HTML, LaTeX, RTF, XML, and man pages. By default, Doxygen generates HTML output, which can be easily viewed in a web browser. However, you can configure Doxygen to generate documentation in other formats as well.

Can I customize the appearance of the generated documentation?

Yes, you can customize the appearance of the generated documentation by modifying the Doxygen configuration file. The configuration file allows you to specify various settings related to the layout, styling, and content of the documentation. You can customize the colors, fonts, headers, footers, and more to match your desired look and feel.

Can I document my code using Doxygen-style comments in other programming languages?

While Doxygen is primarily designed for C++ documentation, you can use Doxygen-style comments (e.g., /** ... */) in other programming languages as well. However, the extent of support for Doxygen-style comments may vary depending on the language and the tools you are using. It is recommended to consult the documentation or resources specific to the programming language you are working with to ensure compatibility and proper usage.

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