tlmgr stopped working complaining that it is version 2012 while the repository is 2013. Fine, I need to install TL 2013. So I try and do just that, by following the first link at http://www.tug.org/texlive/acquire.html and downloading, extracting and running: http://mirror.ctan.org/systems/texlive/tlnet/install-tl-unx.tar.gz

I now get the following error:

Loading http://mirror.isoc.org.il/pub/ctan/systems/texlive/tlnet/tlpkg/texlive.tlpdb
./install-tl: The TeX Live versions of the local installation
and the repository being accessed are not compatible:
      local: 2012
 repository: 2013
Perhaps you need to use a different CTAN mirror?
(For more, see the output of install-tl --help, especially the
 -repository option.  Online via http://tug.org/texlive/doc.)

But this is precisely what I'm trying to solve.. help?

I'm using Ubuntu. install-tl is located at /tmp/install-tl-20130208

  • 1
    Since there may be conflicting (duplicate) binaries, you should remove TeX Live 2012 before installing 2013. Sure they can reside side-by-side, but it's easier doing it this way.
    – Werner
    Jun 24, 2013 at 23:47
  • 4
    @Werner I wouldn't recommend removing TL 2012. @Yoav: where's your install-tl located?
    – egreg
    Jun 24, 2013 at 23:51
  • @egreg I'm using Ubuntu. install-tl is located at /tmp/install-tl-20130208
    – Yoav
    Jun 24, 2013 at 23:54
  • 2
    Can you check the version of your install-tl script? When I installed TL2013 last week, some mirrors at CTAN were still distributing a TL2012 installer, causing this error. A correct TL2013 installer should be dated 201305** or 201306**, if I remember correctly.
    – T. Verron
    Jun 25, 2013 at 5:10
  • 1
    For me, the link you gave provides a texlive stamped on 24th june. Maybe you should try downloading it again. If you want to try another mirror, check this page : ctan.org/mirrors
    – T. Verron
    Jun 25, 2013 at 6:08

1 Answer 1


This error appears when you are using an installer for TL2012, while trying to install TL2013. It may happen if some mirrors haven't synced their files yet.

To avoid that, ensure that the file you download is recent enough. Here, your texlive is named *-20130208, so it was built on 8th feb 2013.

The how-to-acquire page tells you that

[TL2013] was released on 18 June 2013

So you should try to get your hands on an installer timestamped after this date. For me, the generic download link gives a recent-enough file, but it can be mirror-dependent. Try redownloading the file, and if it doesn't work, pick another mirror.

  • Thanks, choosing another mirror worked. (I must say the whole experience with this switch from TL2012 to TL2013 was very unpleasant for someone like me who doesn't really care about versions but is forced to switch in the middle of another project because tlmgr stops working with the new version without warning!)
    – Yoav
    Jun 25, 2013 at 6:39
  • 2
    @Voav Unless you need to update/add packages, you don't need tlmgr. So the usual advice would be not to worry about this in the middle of a project: use the version you already have installed and look at updating only once you finish.
    – Joseph Wright
    Jun 25, 2013 at 7:29
  • 1
    @Yoav: If you are in the middle of a project you shouldn’t try to update any packages, besides tlmgr does not stop working, it just will not offer you any updates which is actually desired in your case. Jun 25, 2013 at 7:49
  • @Yoav: Even if you need to add or update a specific packages, chances are that you can do it manually (download the package and copy it in your texmf tree) on your texlive 2012 install.
    – T. Verron
    Jun 25, 2013 at 8:03
  • At the middle of a project a collaborator added a dependency on the CJK package, which I didn't have installed. tlmgr stopped working by refusing to install this package. Installing it manually was tedious but worked, but turned out to be only partially successful, as it did not install the needed fonts. And fonts are apparently a real nightmare to install manually. At this point I gave up and installed the new TL2013, which also didn't go very smoothly, as indicated by this question.
    – Yoav
    Jun 25, 2013 at 10:24

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