Installing on Ubuntu

This page is for installing TileMill on Ubuntu Desktop from the Mapbox provided Launchpad PPA. You can use this approach for a headless Ubuntu Server as well - see the Ubuntu Service for details.

TileMill can also run great on other Linux distributions, Solaris, and FreeBSD - basically anywhere you can run Node.js and Mapnik. But on these platforms TileMill will need to be built from source because, at this time, pre-built packages are only provided for Ubuntu. See the source build instructions for more details. We also have instructions for Mac OS X and Windows.


  • Ubuntu 10.04+ (Lucid and above)
  • 2 GB memory
  • A modern browser (Chrome, Firefox)
  • Internet connection for remote datasources


  1. Download the TileMill installer for Ubuntu. If the download window appears, choose Save File.
  2. Select install-tilemill.tar.gz in your Downloads folder. Choose Edit > Extract Here from the menu.
  3. Double-click on to start the installation process. If prompted, choose Run in terminal. Enter your system password when prompted.
  4. Start TileMill using the Ubuntu launcher (11.10) or by choosing Applications > Graphics > TileMill from the menu (11.04).

Terminal installation

If you’re terminal savvy, you can install TileMill with the following commands:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:developmentseed/mapbox
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install tilemill libmapnik nodejs

Then start TileMill from the command line:

node /usr/share/tilemill/index.js

For more details on running from the command line see the Ubuntu Service for details.

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