A few days back I was reading a post regarding elementary OS and in the comment section there was a few people mentioning that there are a lot of outdated packages and that if anyone wanted to use the newest versions of software packages then elementary OS wasn't for him.

I know that there are some Linux distributions that are featuring outdated packages to be stable but I haven't really heard anything similar for elementary OS. Is there any truth to the statement I read in the comments?

1 Answer 1


Depends what distribution you're comparing elementary OS with. Comparing with Arch and derivatives the packages are outdated, simply because elementary is stable and not bleeding edge.

Comparing with Ubuntu, elementary OS freya uses the same repositories as Ubuntu 14.04 for most of it's software including the kernel (3.16).

Within the Ubuntu world you could say elementary isn't outdated - it even features a more recent gtk package than Ubuntu unity/gnome 14.04.

Most software is available in ppas for trusty and therefore elementary OS, including the latest nVidia Drivers, xorg and many others.

Also, Ubuntu 14.04.3 should be released in August, which may bring us kernel 3.19 and lots of other improvements.

So, overall, yes, elementary is generally distant from bleeding edge distributions in package update, but it is on par with the Ubuntu environment, and if you wish to have fresher packages there are a lot of ppas dedicated to that purpose.

  • 1
    To add on the point of using PPAs to get the latest packages for certain software, I decided to create an overview table featuring information on PPAs and the software version they are providing. Feel free to contribute to the overview at: ppa.orzanna.de
    – orschiro
    Commented Jul 1, 2015 at 8:04

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