I just setup a new VM with Debian Squeeze (latest stable release, 6.0.4). I am going for a webserver, so I installed the usual... apache, php5, mysql, phpmyadmin, etc.

Everything went well, everything is working.

My question is about upgrading packages. I noticed the phpmyadmin version is 3.3.7... the latest is Doing apt-get update/upgrade does not upgrade the package.

How does one go about upgrading packages on a Debian Squeeze server if apt-get update/upgrade does not work?


4 Answers 4


I think you are misunderstanding what the releases actually are (Lenny/Squeeze etc.)

A Debian build is no more than a kernel, collection of libraries and applications. The applications generally stay the same version, with newer releases becoming available in the next version of Debian (unless someone makes a backport).

Eg. For phpmyadmin http://packages.debian.org/lenny/phpmyadmin - You can see that 3.4.10 is available in wheezy, not squeeze

This is what makes the OS considered stable - using a (restrictive, not latest) version of software/libs all considered to be stable

You could upgrade to the newer version of Debian, which would be a little extreme for the sake of a small web app like phpmyadmin; or you could just download the latest version of phpmyadmin and install it manually.

When you install phpmyadmin via aptitude, it doesn't do more than create an Apache conf, a system defaults file and populate the contents of /usr/share/phpmyadmin (IIRC).

So my suggestion would be to just install phpmyadmin from the source, it is extremely simple, if in doubt read the README.

  • When I install from source, does that "overwrite" my current installation? Good information here... as stated in the other answers, still very new to this and every little thing is helping tremendously. Thanks! Mar 21, 2012 at 23:47
  • That is up to you, you can install alongside or replace the directory contents entirely. Under normal situations, I wouldn't recommend deleting files created by APT - but in this case, phpmyadmin is so insignificant in terms of what is involved during install - you could just get away with emptying the /usr/share/phpmyadmin dir and replacing it with the contents of a new phpmyadmin installation Mar 21, 2012 at 23:49
  • @sonassi : thank you for teaching me what realease really are. I was pretty sure that app can be upgraded to the latest version with apt-get. Never considered Debian as a set of version of software. Great !
    – 4wk_
    Oct 23, 2013 at 13:24

Sometimes you can have success by downloading the deb package and doing "dpkg -i name.deb". If the newer version package does not have too many dependencies that could work. You'd have to manually download and install the deb packages of dependencies which require a newer version than is available in squeeze.

But, I am not sure if this is practical with phpmyadmin.

I am not aware of a smarter way than trying by hand, except perhaps installing it from source in a custom location.

Also, sometimes a newer version can be found at http://backports-master.debian.org/Packages/ which you can install with relative ease on squeeze. But it doesn't look like phpmyadmin is available there.

  • I'll give it a go... thanks! Still learning and every little bit helps, thanks for responding! Mar 21, 2012 at 23:46

phpmyadmin is no different from any php script like wordpress or drupal. You could uninstall the phpmyadmin package using apt-get and install the latest version of phpmyadmin by downloading it from the phpmyadmin website and follow the instructions. As long as you have a working installation of Linux + Apache + MySQL + PHP(LAMP) you should have no problems.


I'm afraid this distro is not the right one for your needs.
Debian is not for those whom want to be up to date.

Use Debian with other repositories. Have a look at the Debian's website and learn about SID, apt pining, and so.
Or choose another distro to have the same result. For example Linux Mint Debian Edition or aptosid.

  • The more you know! Thanks for the info... still very new and learning everyday, appreciate the info! Mar 21, 2012 at 23:45
  • This is just ignorant. It's not Debian that' the issue, it's "stable" vs "testing" update policies. LMDE might be good if you need the drivers, or want your browser "customised" to add their advertising, but for a VM or server environment, it's mostly just a bit of extra bloat.
    – mc0e
    Feb 13, 2017 at 7:34

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