I received this warning:

Your copy of avconv is outdated, 
update avconv to version 10-0 or newer if you encounter any errors.

while downloading a YouTube video with youtube-dl -f 137+140. I am using kubuntu 14.04.

What should I do to get rid of this problem?

  • .. update avconv to version 10-0 ...
    – blade19899
    Dec 19, 2014 at 10:05
  • 1
    I think it's just sudo apt-get update then (when it finishes) sudo apt-get upgrade Dec 19, 2014 at 10:42

4 Answers 4


To answer OP's question the way he wants it:

# before
$ avconv |& grep \ version | awk '{print $3}'

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:heyarje/libav-11 && sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install libav-tools

# after
$ avconv |& grep \ version | awk '{print $3}'

Alternatively, can avconv -version to get avconv latest version


By default youtube-dl uses avconv, but you can tell it to use ffmpeg instead.

Then use youtube-dl with --prefer-ffmpeg flag, e.g.:

youtube-dl -f 137+140 --prefer-ffmpeg <url>

To avoid typing that flag everytime, you can put it in the configuration file.

  • This didn't help on my Ubuntu 14.04.3 box, but upgrading as suggested by @user35186 (see below) helped. The hint with the config file is very helpful, thank you.
    – Peterino
    Jan 31, 2016 at 21:19

As stated in the error message, your version of avconv is outdated, and needs to be updated.

If you installed avconv through a package manager (such as apt-get or synaptic), you can use the following commands to update avonv:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

sudo apt-get update updates your local index of software in the Ubuntu repositories. This allows sudo apt-get upgrade to detect if any updates are available.

sudo apt-get upgrade is responisble for actually upgrading any outdated software.


Compile your own version of libav

sudo apt-get install dpkg-dev build-essential nasm pkg-config
wget https://libav.org/releases/libav-10.7.tar.gz
sudo cp avconv avprobe avserver /usr/local/bin/

This especially works for older distros which can't pick the latest versions of libav. Source: https://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?t=197316

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