Ubuntu 14.4 comes with Python 2.7.6 built-in, but I'd like to upgrade it to 2.7.9 (it has security features that I want).

Is that even possible? If so, how can this be achieved?


6 Answers 6


You can use pyenv:

 git clone https://github.com/pyenv/pyenv.git ~/.pyenv
 git clone https://github.com/pyenv/pyenv-virtualenv.git ~/.pyenv/plugins/pyenv-virtualenv

Then add

   #   for PyEnv
  export PYENV_ROOT="$HOME/.pyenv"
  export PATH="$HOME/.pyenv/bin:$PATH"
  export PATH="$HOME/.pyenv/shims:$PATH"
  eval "$(pyenv init -)"

to .bash_profile then you can see the python version you want to install or update:

pyenv install --list

want python 2.7.18? First you install it:

 pyenv install 2.7.18

after which you can create a virtualenv using it:

 pyenv virtualenv 2.7.18

Hope it can help you.

  • For Ubuntu, that block works better in ~/.bashrc rather than ~/.bash_profile. Then do exec "$SHELL".
    – brendan
    Aug 18, 2017 at 10:39

ppa:fkrull/deadsnakes is the latest version of python2.7

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fkrull/deadsnakes
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

It will upgrade python to 2.7.10

  • 1
    tried in development machines (all 14.04 desktops), very good alternative. Sep 28, 2015 at 21:24
  • But I found it was not compatible with my app.
    – Like
    Oct 25, 2015 at 15:46
  • 4
    Beware that relying on an unofficial package, and/or a PPA, especially for something as fundamental as Python in Ubuntu, bypasses important security processes & can lead to many problems. Some packages explicitly depend on the official packages or versions. Instead, you may well want to use a virtualenv with a more recent version of python for just the apps you need it for. See also Upgrade to Python 2.7.9 on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, and make your own .deb package for deployment - Renoir Boulanger
    – nealmcb
    Jan 29, 2016 at 18:30
  • Good. You are right. I gave up my approach several months ago.
    – Like
    Jan 30, 2016 at 11:53
  • 3
    This will upgrade all your packages.
    – mpen
    May 14, 2016 at 1:26

I'm not a fan of previous answers suggesting installing from various PPAs. No disrespect intended, but I don't know the people who built them and I have no idea what might be in there. In any environment where someone has to answer to a security professional that practice would be frowned upon.

I just found that downloading 2.7.18 from source and installing it side-by-side was a good start. This awesome blog post covered the steps. (recreated here to conform to stack overflow guidelines)

wget https://www.python.org/ftp/python/2.7.18/Python-2.7.18.tgz
tar xfz Python-2.7.18.tgz
cd Python-2.7.18/
./configure --prefix /usr/local/lib/python2.7.18
make install

Test if the version works

/usr/local/lib/python2.7.18/bin/python -V
Python 2.7.18

Now that I have 2.7.18 installed I can call it directly or symlink to it from wherever I want. (or copy it into a virtualenv etc.)

And note that I got here from a situation where I was getting insecure platform warnings, and SNI Missing warnings. Which led me here. I imagine many people are finding this question through the same path. And if that's why you're here this snippet may be of use to you too

pip install urllib3[secure]
  • This is actually the better answer, especially if you are already using virtualenv. Reason i feel that this is better, is that it doesn't rely on any third party applications or repositories that may break something else.
    – Andre
    Sep 13, 2019 at 8:33
  • Don't do this without a virtualenv you will damage the default python! Jun 12, 2020 at 23:46
  • BTW the last version of Python 2.7 is 2.7.18. Just substitute it in the code above.
    – Finesse
    Sep 17, 2020 at 0:08

Here is new upgraded third party repository:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:jonathonf/python-2.7
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install python2.7
python --version
  • Failed to fetch http://ppa.launchpad.net/jonathonf/python-2.7/ubuntu/dists/trusty/main/binary-amd64/Packages 403 Forbidden
    – Finesse
    Sep 17, 2020 at 0:03

You can go to the python.org and download the .tar.gz file compile and install it. You will need the basic tools in order to compile the source code. I don't remember if the "build-essential" package will suffice but give it a try.


The version you want is already in Ubuntu, in Vivid (pre)release. If you are brave, you can mix releases and install Vivid's version of Python under Trusty. Below is a generic solution that works on some packages, I can't warranty it with Python. The chances are ~ 50/50 that it will succeed. If you however find a proper backports repository for 14.04 with your required package version, then it should be a better choice.

  1. You have '... trusty main' line in your /etc/apt/sources.list, copy it twice, changing 'trusty' to 'utopic' and 'vivid'.

  2. Run apt-get update and then apt-get -t vivid install python2.7. Review dependencies installed before proceeding. Abort upgrade when you suspect any damage to your system (deleted important packages, etc.).

  3. Remove or hash the two lines from /etc/apt/sources.list.

Never do it on production machines. Make a backup of your OS and prepare boot media to restore it if needed. Expect problems on upgrades. You've been warned.

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