checkinstall keeps track of all the files created or modified by your installation script, builds a standard binary package (.deb, .rpm, .tgz) and installs it in your system giving you the ability to uninstall it with your distribution's standard package management utilities.
Note that for most useful actions, checkinstall must be run as root
checkinstall is really useful if you've got a tarball with software that you have to compile with the usual
./configure make make install make clean
To use it, you just build the software according to its instructions, and then use the install command in the instructions through checkinstall. I usually boils down to
tar -zxvf source-app.tar.gz cd source ./configure make checkinstall
checkinstall will build a .deb package and install it.
If you want to remove the package, just use your favorite package management tool.
If you add the --install=no option to checkinstall, the program will generate a .deb package without installing it.
You can now install the generated .deb on your computer or other machines of the same architecture (and the same version of Debian system), with dpkg -i source-app_version_amd64.deb or gdebi.
The default configuration is read from /etc/checkinstallrc