version: 2.4.0-1ubuntu2

I'm following a web tutorial at lynda.com about QGIS. In one of the first videos I see there's this preview of raster files.

There's the .dem files and the .ecw files among the tutorial example files. I can preview the .dem files as in the video, but unlike the authors of the tutorial I cannot preview the .ecw files.

Additionally, when I try to open a .ecw file with qgis (not qbrowser), I get the following message:

The layer whateverthepathis/552B.ecw is not a valid layer and can not be added to the map

When I open a .dem file instead, no error message is displayed and the layer is added just fine.

Is there something I need to setup in order to be able to preview those files and add their layers to the map? Is it a bug of this particular version?

I'm just getting started with qgis and with GIS software in general.

1 Answer 1


ECW file support is not included by default due to licensing issues. There is a tutorial for adding ECW support to QGIS on Ubuntu Linux.

See here:


Basically you need to build lib-gdal-ecw and download an appropriate SDK.


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