I am trying to get LaTeX working on a fresh Ubuntu 18.04 installation. When I install texlive using apt-get, I get an extremely minimal (and insufficient) set of packages (not even Tikz!). Trying to install texlive-full brings up a bunch of errors about not being able to connect to certain repos, so I also gave up on that.

I have now installed TeXLive 2018 from TeXLive's website, as I understand this is the recommended way to install it for Ubuntu. However this installation still does not contain all the packages I need. I have tried installing the package texliveonfly using tlmgr to get the packages I need, and (after already fixing some errors), I get the following message:

tlmgr: Remote repository is newer than local (2017 < 2018)

How can this even be the case, when I installed TeXLive 2018, and now how can I fix this? Any help would be greatly appreciated, as I've been bashing my head against getting LaTeX working for half a week now.

  • 2
    you presumably have not set your PATH so that texlive2018 is ahead of the system tex. what does type tlmgr report ? (or which tlmgr if you prefer) Aug 6, 2018 at 14:24
  • @DavidCarlisle This adds a lot of clarity to why what I was doing didn't work, and although it didn't work because I was new to Linux and didn't understand anything about PATHs (I was typing the commands to add to PATH into the terminal rather than editing .profile, and so it was obviously not saved when I restarted the shell), the error I was getting really threw me off the track.
    – Notso
    Sep 4, 2018 at 9:02

1 Answer 1


Apparently Ubuntu 18.04 default installation comes with a few packages that conflicts with texlive from tug.org.

To do a proper latex full installation, after I installed Ubuntu desktop 18.04 I had first to remove any latex related packages from my machine and only after that a clean install using install-tl worked fine.

Don't forget to add the correct paths to your .bashrc after the installation:

# Texlive
export MANPATH="${MANPATH}:/usr/local/texlive/2018/texmf-dist/doc/man"
export INFOPATH="${INFOPATH}:/usr/local/texlive/2018/texmf-dist/doc/info"
export PATH="${PATH}:/usr/local/texlive/2018/bin/x86_64-linux"
  • 7
    For future visitors: remember, it is not a good idea to just set the PATH change in .bashrc , because, if you start your editor through a menu, double clicking a file or a short cut, nothing bashy is ever executed, and thus bashrc is never executed and thus your editor cannot find the new latex and might pick up a system installed latex (the wrong latex). This is a big problem as the bashrc thing is mentioned so many times. Proper way: add the PATH change to .profile, log out and in again. Now the PATH change is attached to the main process and can be seen by all new processes
    – daleif
    Aug 19, 2018 at 7:21
  • Also, if you only do this, installing any TeX-dependent software with apt will reinstall Ubuntu's version and cause weird problems unless you know exactly what you're doing. The question on installing 'vanilla' Texlive has the proper procedure in the answers.
    – cfr
    Dec 12, 2019 at 4:09

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