I'm using Ubuntu 16.04 64-bit. Every time I want to install software using the Ubuntu Software or the .deb package, it won't finish installing.

won't finish installing

I tried the solution here: 16.04 Cannot install anything from Ubuntu Software center, but it doesn't resolve my problem.

  • Try installing via apt command and post output Jun 6, 2017 at 12:53
  • 100% agreed with Danial. Installing via command line will let you/us know of any errors. If you don't know how to, just open a terminal, and type: sudo apt install virtualbox
    – Felipe
    Jun 6, 2017 at 16:32

1 Answer 1


There are many possible reasons why Ubuntu Software (a.k.a. gnome-software) is not working for you. I was having issues with it myself.

  1. Firstly, since you started but were not able to complete installs, you probably have an install queue that you need to clear.

    • Make sure Ubuntu Software (gnome-software) is not running. Before making any changes, you want to backup the gnome-software folder that lives in your home directory, which holds the install queue. In Terminal or a CLI:

      cp -r ~/.local/share/gnome-software ~/.local/share/gnome-software-BAK
    • Clear the install queue

      rm ~/.local/share/gnome-software/install-queue
    • Reopen Ubuntu Software (either from launcher or by typing gnome-software into the command line)

    • If the above doesn't work, you could also try removing your home folder's gnome-software directory altogether. Quit Ubuntu Software, then enter:

      rm -r ~/.local/share/gnome-software
    • Restart Ubuntu Software. If that did not help, You can always undo the removal of the gnome-software folder and restore the backup:

      rm -r ~/.local/share/gnome-software && mv ~/.local/share/gnome-software-BAK ~/.local/share/gnome-software
  2. You could also be having problems because you need to run an upgrade.

    • In Terminal, enter:

      sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade`
    • Then restart your computer.

  3. Your sources list might be causing issues for you. My problems with Ubuntu Software were resolved by fully removing PPA's that I thought I had gotten rid of using add-apt-repository --remove, which did not get rid of their .list files in /etc/apt/sources.list.d/, nor did it get rid of their keyrings in /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/. If the software you're trying to install is from a PPA, you could still try cleaning out other PPA's, as these may be slowing down Ubuntu Software. There are known issues with the PPA associated with google-chrome-stable, for example.

    • Edit the list (/etc/apt/sources.list) itself. It's much speedier to do it completely from command line: sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list then sudo apt-get update. You can also do this in the Software and Updates GUI (run from launcher or open in command line with software-properties-gtk), but it seems to take so much longer to do the updating step when I use the GUI. I can add steps for doing it this way if you want, though.

    • If you already know the names of the PPA's you want to remove then you can get rid of them one by one using the command: sudo add-apt-repository --remove ppa:<repo>/<subdirectory>. Note: There's also ppa-purge, which I didn't want to use because it downgrades packages associated with the PPA to versions available in repositories, and I wasn't sure if this would affect the programs I had installed, as the programs themselves were not the problem.

    • After editing sources.list, you may find (like I did) that old PPA's are still showing up in /etc/apt/sources.list.d (a directory containing .list files of each PPA), and their keyrings were still in /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d.

      You can check this yourself by entering the command:

      ls -lR /etc/apt/ | grep -v '~'
    • Then you can get a list of the .list files in sources.list.d and remove them one by one:

      ls /etc/apt/sources.list.d
      sudo rm -i /etc/apt/sources.list.d/<PPAName>.list
      sudo apt-get update
    • To remove the keys:

      sudo apt-key list
      sudo apt-key del <KEY_ID>
      sudo apt-get update

After this, Ubuntu Software was actually functioning, hope this helps you!

There's also the possibility you need to do a "deeper" version of sudo apt-get upgrade:

sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

and restart.

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