Since migrating to a true install and upgrading to 12.04 I have had several problems that seem to relate to the Ubuntu Software Center. Hanging at applying changes and blank screen on screen lock only when it is running, for instance.

My question is: Can I safely uninstall and reinstall Ubuntu Software Center and could this possibly fix those problems or are they just bugs I have to wait for updates for?

3 Answers 3


Press CTRL+ALT+T simultaneously to enter terminal.

To uninstall Software Center:

  1. sudo apt-get remove software-center

  2. sudo apt-get autoremove software-center

To re-install Software Center:

  1. sudo apt-get update

  2. sudo apt-get install software-center

  • 1
    Interesting, using apt-get to remove software-center also states that it will remove ubuntu-desktop. That sounds a bit scary, but removes doesn't seem to have broken anything just yet. I suppose we'll see what happens with the next set up updates/upgrades and when we put this into production.
    – Magellan
    May 10, 2012 at 21:09
  • @all4ninja re-installing software-center did not fix my problem. For example, after reinstallation, I tried to install inkscape. But the install button is not even clickable. I really don't get this mess I've got into :(
    – itsols
    Jun 11, 2012 at 12:34
  • @all4naija I misspelled your name. The comment addressed to all4ninja was meant for you :)
    – itsols
    Jun 11, 2012 at 13:02
  • Try to install it from terminal - 1. sudo apt-get restricted-extras 2. sudo apt-get update 3. sudo apt-get install inkscape . Come back here with your feedback
    – all4naija
    Jun 11, 2012 at 14:04
  • 4
    Why run sudo apt-get update after reinstalling the Software Center? Aug 2, 2012 at 17:07

You can uninstall and reinstall the Software Center with a single command. This also resets any of its systemwide configuration files to their defaults.

sudo apt-get --purge --reinstall install software-center

If you want to get a newer version of the Software Center if there's one available as an update, make sure to run sudo apt-get update first (as you'd usually do when installing any software from the Terminal).

As for whether or not this will fix the problem, sometimes it does, and sometimes it doesn't. It depends on specifically what is wrong. I recommend removing user-specific Software Center configuration files as well:

cd ~/.config; rm -r software-center

If the problems persist, I recommend reporting a bug.


Your problem might not be exactly the software center, it doesn't manage and if the problem is settings level it will NOT revert when you update the application, you may likely remove the problematic app but instead of apt-get remove you will have to use apt-get purge which will also remove the configuration files from your computer, the you'll have to reinstall the application and that should solve the problem

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