Compiling PyQt5 on Ubuntu 12.04

konopczynski edited this page Nov 22, 2016 · 21 revisions

This guide provides basic instructions on getting PyQt5 compiled on Ubuntu 12.04 x64 for Python 2.7


To complete this compilation, there are three files which you'll need.

  1. Qt 5.3.1
  2. sip-4.16.5
  3. PyQt 5.3.2

Tested with Qt 5.3.1 and 5.4.1.


  1. Install Qt


# First turn the newly downloaded file into an executable
$ chmod +x
$ ./
  1. Install Dependencies
# Install C++ compiler for Make
$ sudo apt-get install build-essential

# Install Python source
$ sudo apt-get install python-dev

# Install PyQt-specific libraries for Ubuntu
$ sudo apt-add-repository ppa:ubuntu-sdk-team/ppa
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install qtdeclarative5-dev
  1. Compile SIP
$ tar xvzf sip-4.16.5.tar.gz
$ cd sip-4.16.5
$ python
$ make
$ sudo make install
  1. Compile PyQt
$ cd ..
$ tar xvzf PyQt-gpl-5.3.2.tar.gz
$ cd PyQt-gpl-5.3.2

# This takes a minute or two.
# --qmake: Tell compiler about location of Qt binaries
# --sip-incdir: Tell compiler about location of sip library
$ python --qmake ~/Qt5.3.1/5.3/gcc_64/bin/qmake --sip-incdir ../sip-4.16.5/siplib

# The PyQt makefile assumes the Python libraries that we just installed
# to be located in a different location than what Ubuntu has chosen to
# store them. We'll symlink the actual location into the assumed location.
$ sudo ln -s /usr/include/python2.7 /usr/local/include/python2.7

# Now we can run make.
# Note: This could potentially take an hour or two.
$ make

# This takes less than a minute
$ sudo make install


PyQt should now be accessible from the version of Python you first ran with.

>>> import sys
>>> from PyQt5 import QtWidgets
>>> app = QtWidgets.QApplication(sys.argv)
>>> button = QtWidgets.QPushButton("Hello, World!")
>>> button.setFixedSize(100, 50)
>>> app.exec_()

If this produces a new window with a single button in it, you're good to go!

If not, you can contact me at


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