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You can install less css compiler easy:

apt-get install lessc

But that only installs version 1.1.0. How can you update to the very latest version?

(The latest version is 1.3.0)

-- update --

  • I want to use the lessc command-line tool, not the client-side implentation.
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up vote 8 down vote accepted

Are you using it client-side (in the browser)? If so, it's a single JavaScript file, just download it.

If you're using it server-side (from a NodeJS application), or want the lessc command-line tool, the recommended way to install is using npm (the Node Package Manager):

npm install less

If you don't have npm, it's in the Ubuntu 11.10 repositories:

sudo apt-get install npm

or Using Software Center Install npm via the software center

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I'm using the command line tool. Too bad it can't simply be installed via apt-get, but npm worked. I did get 2 warnings npm WARN publish-everything less@1.3.0 Adding entire directory to tarball. Please add a and npm WARN publish-everything less@1.3.0 .npmignore or specify a 'files' array in the package.json – BullfrogBlues Apr 7 '12 at 10:17
npm is warning you that less doesn't specify which files to package up when installing the package. You might want to file a bug report with the developers, but it should be harmless. – Søren Løvborg Apr 7 '12 at 14:13

After a lot of head-hitting-desk moments I managed to solve this one.

Originally I had installed lessc using:

sudo apt-get install node-less yui-compressor

This gave me lessc 1.2.1 from the command lessc -v

Had to manually download the Quantal version from a repo

(this gave me ~/Downloads/node-less_1.3.0~20120310-1_all.deb)


sudo dpkg -i ~/Downloads/node-less_1.3.0~20120310-1_all.deb

now I have lessc 1.3.0


lessc twit-bootstrap_2.0/less/bootstrap.less > /var/tmp/bs.css

goes smoothly

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That is because, it is the latest version available in repositories

Whatever version is present in repositories you have added, apt-get will install only that version.

However if you want to install different version, you should try for other ways

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As of Ubuntu 12.10, the node-less package installs v1.3.0 of lessc:

$ sudo apt-get install node-less
$ lessc -v
lessc 1.3.0 (LESS Compiler) [JavaScript]
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Just :

npm install less -g

or with sudo

sudo npm install less -g

For checking version :

lessc -v
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check your version :

node -v

you have to update nodejs first

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install -y python-software-properties python g++ make
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chris-lea/node.js
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install nodejs

uninstall less / and istall again

 npm uninstall less
 npm install less

check version :

lessc -v
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