I've installed apache2 on my ubuntu machine using the apt-get package manager. It installed apache 2.2.16. I'd like to upgrade to the latest (or at least a newer version) of apache2 but apt-get upgrade and update don't seem to find a newer version. When I type

apt-get install -s apache2

It tells me

apache2 is already the newest version.

Do I need to download this package manually? Is there a reason to not do this?

Here is the version of Ubuntu I am running:


2 Answers 2


When using package repositories, you're at the mercy of the repository managers for upgrades. In the vast majority of cases, this is a very good thing, as they do a lot of testing on packages and interactions between packages before releasing a new revision into the repo. This prevents you from shooting yourself in the foot in many ways.

If you really need bleeding-edge versions, you'll need to either install from source (not recommended) or find a third-party repository that has more recent versions (though by doing this, you're moving "off-script" and will be more likely to run into bugs or odd interactions between packages).

  • It should also be noted that the packager may not change the version number on the package, but may still be applying security/bug fixes. If the OP is concerned about some security hole that's fixed in a later Apache version (e.g., some auditor raised a red flag on the seemingly out of date package), he probably shouldn't worry, as Ubuntu has likely patched it. The OP should check the the package change logs for the problem he's concerned about.
    – cjc
    Feb 23, 2012 at 22:30
  • @cjc - good point.
    – EEAA
    Feb 23, 2012 at 22:33
  • thanks @ErikA and cjc for the info. this is kind of what i suspected and you guessed it right that this was the result of an audit that stated a dos vulnerability was patched in a more recent version of apache. so it sounds like even though the apache package may have version number e.g. 2.2.16, it may actually be 2.2.16 but with a few additional security patches in some cases? did i understand that right? Feb 24, 2012 at 19:49
  • @EmileBaizel - yep, you got it!
    – EEAA
    Feb 24, 2012 at 20:39
  • great. thanks @ErikA. one more question, is there a way to see what patches have been applied to the package? for example, can i see if a Denial of Service patch available in 2.2.18 was made on the Ubuntu Apache 2.2.16 package? Feb 26, 2012 at 19:48

Well, it's been a while since I used Ubuntu, I now use Kubuntu. Assuming you really really need the very latest version because some feature is missing from what you already have.

I believe under under software sources on the updates tab there is an option to turn on pre-release updates (your's would show maverick instead of lucid). So click on that, apply it and do an apt-get update.

Software Sources

Alternatively, I think you can also edit /etc/apt/sources.list directly and follow the comments. In mine I can uncomment a couple of lines to get those repositories (which is what the tick box in the dialog shown would do).

If that doesn't get you the latest build, you could also download the apache sources yourself and compile them. You may need to apt-get install gcc and apt-get install g++ and anything else it depends on. However, you'll be on your own when it comes to maintaining. To upgrade you'll have to compile from sources all over again.

Compilation is not that hard. It's usually just a matter of doing something like:

cd /path/to/apache2/sources
sudo make install

There may be some options you'd want to supply to ./configure. ./configure --help shows them. But read the apache compilation documentation before you start. Again, assuming you really really need the very latest version and you're prepared to go down this route.

And despite the comment below. The above will work fine. See: compiling for the impatient. http://httpd.apache.org/docs/2.0/install.html

  • 1
    There's a lot more complexity and headaches than you let on to building from source.
    – EEAA
    Feb 23, 2012 at 18:43
  • I've built apache before. It's not that hard.
    – hookenz
    Feb 23, 2012 at 18:47
  • 2
    You also have development library dependencies to resolve, conflicts with where other packages think binaries should be, compiling/linking in other modules (mod_php5, mod_perl, etc.). For a linux beginner (which I strongly guess the OP is), compiling from source is not a good recommendation.
    – EEAA
    Feb 23, 2012 at 18:54
  • The building isn't hard. It is the management that is hard. Feb 23, 2012 at 18:58
  • EriKa - Actually, unless you're building a production server I would just use packages. If you really want to learn then jump right in and compile it yourself. After all that's what you suggested on your own answer! You learn more by trying than just playing it safe and never venturing out.
    – hookenz
    Feb 23, 2012 at 19:00

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