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How to correctly install LyX on Ubuntu. (Debian users should check LyXOnDebian.)

Table of contents (hide)

  1.   1.  Installation
    1.   1.1  Ubuntu official repos
    2.   1.2  Ubuntu PPA
    3.   1.3  Manual compilation
  2.   2.  FAQ
    1.   2.1  Tip: Use MPM with Ubuntu
    2.   2.2  Tip: Where are the examples files?
    3.   2.3  Creating documents in other languages
    4.   2.4  Categories

1.  Installation

1.1  Ubuntu official repos

The version of LyX provided by the official repositories is often out of date, but unless you need features or bug fixes from more recent versions, that may be fine.

For Hebrew issues, see Hebrew On Linux.

1.2  Ubuntu PPA

The stable PPA, set up by Liviu Andronic, contains the latest stable release of LyX for the Ubuntu distributions.


If you already have a repository version of LyX installed, you should remove it:

  1. sudo apt-get remove lyx (remove your repository version)
  2. sudo apt-get autoremove (remove repository dependencies)

If you don't do this, the fourth step that follows may fail.

Do the following:

  1. sudo add-apt-repository ppa:lyx-devel/release
  2. sudo apt-get update (update so that apt is aware of the new PPA)
  3. sudo apt-get install lyx (install from the PPA)
  4. lyx (run LyX)

You will probably have to press "Enter" after step 1 (adding the PPA).


To uninstall the package, do as you would for any package with apt-get.

You may want to stop using a PPA for various reasons. One way to "pause" the PPA is to do the following:

Open Ubuntu Software Center and go to Edit > Software Sources > Other Software and uncheck the two entries corresponding to the PPA of interest.

1.3  Manual compilation

As a last resort, you can always compile LyX from source. Simply:

  1. Get the sources either as a tarball (see or fresh from the SVN.
  2. Use this amazing facility to get all the right dependencies for development: Build dependencies do not change that quickly, so you will meet most (or all) of them with sudo apt-get build-dep lyx
  3. Follow instructions in the folder you downloaded (i.e. "./configure" then "make" then "sudo make install")


2.  FAQ

2.1  Tip: Use MPM with Ubuntu

MPM is the MiKTeX Package Manager (MiKTeX being the most popular LaTeX distribution for the Windows platform). It has been ported to Unix and descendants, albeit command-line only (so far). One nice feature of MiKTeX is that LaTeX packages are provided for download individually, rather than in large bundles.

A blog entry by Stefan Kottwitz gives concise instructions on how to install MPM in Ubuntu Hardy. Once it's installed, you can easily download and install individual LaTeX packages. For instance, I installed xypic.sty using the line

sudo mpm --install=xypic


2.2  Tip: Where are the examples files?

The examples files are in /usr/share/lyx/examples/, however, they cannot be accessed by LyX as a user, since they are read only. So you must use terminal to go to /usr/share/lyx/ and then do cp -r examples ~/Documents/lyx/examples. This will create a directory with read/write permissions in your home directory.

2.3  Creating documents in other languages


Please follow guide at Linux, packages

2.4  Categories


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Page last modified on 2022-06-13 20:32 UTC