LAStools @linux

LAStools runs on Windows and Linux. This article describes the features and installation of LAStools for Linux.


All binaries are 64bit.
Multicore (-cores) is supported.
BLAST is not available right now on Linux.
The „-gui“ option is not available because most users run LAStools@Linux on the command line for batch processing.


Download the binaries via a browser or use the console. In our simple example installation, we install into „~/lastools“:

cd ~
mkdir lastools
cd lastools

Extract the download and optionally remove the download file:

tar xvzf LAStools.tar.gz
rm LAStools.tar.gz

LAStools contain some internal shared object files (.so). For Linux to find these libraries, you must add these files to your library path or extend your library path to include your installation directory:


Then install missing dependencies.
Most likely you need to install libgeotiff-dev, optionally you can (re)install all dependencies.

sudo apt-get install libgeotiff-dev

sudo apt-get install libjpeg62 libpng-dev libtiff-dev libjpeg-dev libz-dev libproj-dev liblzma-dev libjbig-dev libzstd-dev libgeotiff-dev libwebp-dev liblzma-dev

Now you can test one of the tool commands:


If startup fails with a ‘missing library’ message, you may need to install one of the additional dependencies mentioned above.

To view all required dependencies, you can do the following:

ldd laszip64

All required libraries are listed here and where they were found: (0x00007ffd2c3b2000) => ./ (0x00007f57025a5000) => ./ (0x00007f5702463000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f570226b000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f570211c000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5702101000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701f0f000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701ed5000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701e53000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701e1e000)
/lib64/ (0x00007f57027bb000) => not found => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701e02000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701d96000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701ced000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701cc4000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701cb3000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f5701c2e000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f570193f000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f570191a000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f57017f1000) => /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ (0x00007f57017eb000)

If a library is marked as ‘not found’, you must install that dependency. In the example output above, “libjpeg62” needs to be installed.

sudo apt-get install libjpeg62


If you don’t own a commercial license, the same limitations apply as in the Windows version: The number of points is limited, usually to 3 million points. If you own a license, place your license file („lastoolslicense.txt“) in the .\LAStools\bin directory of the distribution.

Optionally, you can reference the license file in a different directory:

export LAStoolsLicenseFile=~/somewhere/lastoolslicense.txt

This location is checked if the license file is not found in the current path.


Kindly note our license agreement. Please check all your results always carefully.


Suggestions for optimizing LAStools@Linux or this documentation are welcome. Your feedback is greatly appreciated.

Happy LAStooling@Linux!

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