I'm trying to upgrade my server and I'm in a weird state where mariadb-server-core-10.3 and mariadb-server-10.3 1:10.3.30+maria~bionic is conflicting with each other, and possibly maybe involving mysql-server-core-5.5.

This is a Ubuntu 20 server and has gone through a couple of do-release-upgrades. I suspect a major issue is that MariaDB was installed when it wasn't part of Ubuntu's apt, and I had to put in sources manually in /etc/apt/sources.list.d


When trying to upgrade, it complains about dependencies and suggests running apt --fix-broken install. The issues are nicely collected when I do this.

root@host:~$ sudo apt --fix-broken install
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
Correcting dependencies... Done
The following packages were automatically installed and are no longer required:
  libllvm11 libmariadb3 php8.0-curl php8.0-gd php8.0-mbstring php8.0-ssh2
Use 'sudo apt autoremove' to remove them.
The following additional packages will be installed:
  mariadb-server-10.3 mariadb-server-core-10.3
Suggested packages:
  mailx mariadb-test tinyca
The following packages will be upgraded:
  mariadb-server-10.3 mariadb-server-core-10.3
2 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
28 not fully installed or removed.
Need to get 0 B/10.2 MB of archives.
After this operation, 717 kB disk space will be freed.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] Y
Preconfiguring packages ...
(Reading database ... 58001 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack .../mariadb-server-core-10.3_1%3a10.3.34-0ubuntu0.20.04.1_amd64.deb ...
Unpacking mariadb-server-core-10.3 (1:10.3.34-0ubuntu0.20.04.1) over (1:10.3.30+maria~bionic) ...
dpkg: error processing archive /var/cache/apt/archives/mariadb-server-core-10.3_1%3a10.3.34-0ubuntu0.20.04.1_amd64.deb (--unpack):
 trying to overwrite '/usr/bin/my_print_defaults', which is also in package mariadb-server-10.3 1:10.3.30+maria~bionic
dpkg-deb: error: paste subprocess was killed by signal (Broken pipe)
dpkg: regarding .../mariadb-server-10.3_1%3a10.3.34-0ubuntu0.20.04.1_amd64.deb containing mariadb-server-10.3:
 mariadb-server-10.3 conflicts with mysql-server-core-5.5
  mariadb-server-core-10.3 provides mysql-server-core-5.5 and is present and installed.

mysql-server-core-5.5 doesn't seem to be installed though.

root@host:~# apt list --installed | grep mysql

WARNING: apt does not have a stable CLI interface. Use with caution in scripts.

libdbd-mysql-perl/focal,now 4.050-3 amd64 [installed,auto-removable]
libmysqlclient21/focal-updates,focal-security,now 8.0.29-0ubuntu0.20.04.3 amd64 [installed,automatic]
mysql-common/now 1:10.3.30+maria~bionic all [installed,local]
php7.4-mysql/focal,now 1:7.4.30-3+ubuntu20.04.1+deb.sury.org+1 amd64 [installed]
php8.0-mysql/focal,now 1:8.0.20-2+ubuntu20.04.1+deb.sury.org+1 amd64 [installed]
postfix-mysql/focal-updates,now 3.4.13-0ubuntu1.2 amd64 [installed]

And it seems mysql-common is being depended upon by other packages. mysql-client is and mysql-server aren't installed, and if I try to remove mysql-common, I get this:

root@host:~# apt-get purge mysql-common
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
You might want to run 'apt --fix-broken install' to correct these.
The following packages have unmet dependencies:
 libmysqlclient21 : Depends: mysql-common (>= 5.5) but it is not going to be installed
 mariadb-common : Depends: mysql-common (>= 5.6.25) but it is not going to be installed
 mariadb-server : Depends: mariadb-server-10.3 (>= 1:10.3.34-0ubuntu0.20.04.1) but 1:10.3.30+maria~bionic is to be installed

So if I'm reading the last line right, there's some sort of mariadb-server-10.3 and 1:10.3.30+maria~bionic? I do have mariadb sources in /etc/apt/sources.list.d.


mariadb.list specifically:

# MariaDB Server
# To use a different major version of the server, or to pin to a specific minor version, change URI below.
# deb [arch=amd64,arm64] https://downloads.mariadb.com/MariaDB/mariadb-10.3/repo/ubuntu focal main # disabled on upgrade to focal

deb [arch=amd64,arm64 lang=none target-=CNF] https://downloads.mariadb.com/MariaDB/mariadb-10.3/repo/ubuntu bionic main/debug

# MariaDB MaxScale
# To use the latest stable release of MaxScale, use "latest" as the version
# To use the latest beta (or stable if no current beta) release of MaxScale, use "beta" as the version
# deb [arch=amd64] https://dlm.mariadb.com/repo/maxscale/latest/apt focal main # disabled on upgrade to focal

# MariaDB Tools
# deb [arch=amd64] http://downloads.mariadb.com/Tools/ubuntu focal main # disabled on upgrade to focal

Any ideas on how to fix this safely? Thanks!

  • 10.3 is quite old. Try to use apt to get the current version of MariaDB. (It may be about 10.6.)
    – Rick James
    Jul 5 at 4:49
  • Focal's packaged Maria is 10.3
    – Snap E Tom
    Jul 6 at 10:00

1 Answer 1


Looks like the issue was indeed a conflict between the manual repo installed a long time ago and the bundled MariaDB package with newer Ubuntu releases.

I took the following steps - 1. Manually apt-get remove all MariaDB 10.3 packages. (via apt list --installed | grep mariadb). There may be an order of operations issue if you get errors. Remove the server packages first, then clients. 2. Remove all mariadb* entries in /etc/apt/source.list.d. 3) Use apt-get to install MariaDB from the official repos. (sudo apt update , sudo apt install mariadb-server, sudo mysql_secure_installation).

This process will not delete the data files, so your databases and all permissions should still be around when you reinstall.

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