How to Add Apt Repository on Ubuntu Linux

Add Apt Repository on Ubuntu Linux

In this tutorial, we will show you how to add an apt repository on Ubuntu Linux. For those new to Ubuntu package management, add-apt-repository is a command-line tool used for adding Personal Package Archive (PPA) in Debian family Linux distributions.

This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step add apt repository on a Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa) server.


  • A server running one of the following operating systems: Ubuntu 20.04, 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.
  • It’s recommended that you use a fresh OS install to prevent any potential issues.
  • SSH access to the server (or just open Terminal if you’re on a desktop).
  • A non-root sudo user or access to the root user. We recommend acting as a non-root sudo user, however, as you can harm your system if you’re not careful when acting as the root.

Add Apt Repository on Ubuntu Linux

Step 1. First, make sure that all your system packages are up-to-date by running the following apt commands in the terminal.

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade

Step 2. Adding Repositories with add-apt-repository.

If your system is missing add-apt-repository a command, install the software-properties-common package by running the following command:

sudo apt install software-properties-common dirmngr apt-transport-https lsb-release ca-certificates

The basic syntax of the add-apt-repository command is as follows:

add-apt-repository [options] repository

For example, MongoDB is a popular package for running non-Linux software on a Linux system. But the latest version isn’t available through the default repositories. To install the latest version of MongoDB on Ubuntu, you first need to grant access to the MongoDB repository:

sudo apt-key adv --keyserver hkp:// --recv 9DA31620334BD75D9DCB49F368818C72E52529D4

Add the MongoDB repository using the command:

sudo add-apt-repository 'deb [arch=amd64] bionic/mongodb-org/4.0 multiverse'

You can now install any of the packages from the newly enabled repository:

sudo apt install mongodb-org

Step 3. Adding PPA Repositories.

Only an authorized user can add/remove and configure software and repositories in Ubuntu. Here is the command syntax that you can use as sudo in order to add a PPA to your system:

add-apt-repository ppa:ppa_name

And then install the required package from the added repository as sudo as follows:

apt install package_name

For example, to add Jonathan F’s PPA which provides FFmpeg version 4.x you would run:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:jonathonf/ffmpeg-4

Once the PPA is added to your system you can install the repository packages:

sudo apt install ffmpeg

Step 4. Resolve add-apt-repository: command not found error.

The latest version of Ubuntu 19.10, 18.04, 16.04, add-apt-repository command utility is available under the software-properties-common package. So use the following command to install it:

sudo apt install software-properties-common

Congratulations! You have successfully added an apt repository. Thanks for using this tutorial to add apt repository on Ubuntu 18.04 systems. For additional help or useful information, we recommend you check the official Ubuntu website.

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r00t is a seasoned Linux system administrator with a wealth of experience in the field. Known for his contributions to, r00t has authored numerous tutorials and guides, helping users navigate the complexities of Linux systems. His expertise spans across various Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, CentOS, and Debian. r00t's work is characterized by his ability to simplify complex concepts, making Linux more accessible to users of all skill levels. His dedication to the Linux community and his commitment to sharing knowledge makes him a respected figure in the field.
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