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How to install VLC Media Player in Ubuntu in 30 seconds or less

How to install VLC Media Player in Ubuntu in 30 seconds or less

Have you ever wanted to install VLC on Ubuntu but didn’t know how? Chances are you’ve come across various tutorials and methods describing an installation process, but it can all be overwhelming.

If you are an Ubuntu user, then having VLC media player installed on your computer has it’s benefits.

This post will guide you through the process of installing the latest version of VLC Media Player on Ubuntu.

Theres various installation methods we will cover, this includes: uUsing Ubuntu Software Center, Linux Terminal, Advanced Package Tool (APT), and Snap Store for Ubuntu.

Related: How to Convert Youtube Video to Mp3 (Audio) using VLC

Additionally, we will also explore some alternative software options for VLC on Ubuntu Linux as well as discuss specific installation instructions on other older versions of Ubuntu such as 18.04 (Bionic Beaver), 16.04 (Xenial Xerus) and 14.04 (Trusty Tahr).

 Key takeaways

  • To install VLC using Ubuntu Software Center, simply search for VLC in the search bar, click on the “Install” button, enter your password if prompted, and wait for the software to download and install. Once installed, launch VLC from the list of applications to start enjoying your favorite media. (we’ll cover in depth instruction in this guide)
  • In Linux, file extensions are not as important, and the “isi” files demonstrated in the video appear to be bash scripts designed to automate VLC installation.
    • However, such files can pose a threat to your operating system and compromise your personal data.
    • It is recommended to download VLC through the Ubuntu Software Center or by using the following command: $ sudo apt-get install vlc
  • To install VLC, an alternative option is to use the Synaptic Package Manager in Linux. You can install it by running the following command in the terminal: sudo apt-get install synaptic.
    • Once it’s installed, open Synaptic Package Manager and search for VLC. Right-click on VLC and select the “Mark for Installation” option, then click on the “Apply” button at the top to complete the installation. This provides another user-friendly way to install VLC on Linux.

Related: VLC vs Windows Media Player vs PotPlayer – Comparison (Pros and Cons)

Installing VLC Using Ubuntu Software Center

Installing VLC Using Ubuntu Software Center 1

Let’s dive right into the steps. Here’s how to install VLC using Ubuntu Software Center:

  1. Click on the ‘Show Applications’ button on your Ubuntu desktop.
  2. Locate and open the “Ubuntu Software”
  3. Click on the search button in the top-right corner and type in ‘VLC’ in the search bar. You can also navigate to the ‘Audio & Video’ category and locate VLC.
  4. Click on the ‘Install’ button.
  5. Enter your password if prompted to allow the installation.
  6. Wait for the software to download and install on your Ubuntu machine.
  7. Once the installation is complete, locate and launch VLC from the list of installed applications.

By following these steps, you can install VLC on your Ubuntu device and enjoy your favorite videos and music.

Related: How to make VLC the Default Player on Mac and Windows

Installing VLC Using Linux Terminal

Installing VLC Using Linux Terminal

To install VLC using Linux Terminal:

  1. Click on the “Show Applications” button on your Linux desktop.
  2. Search for and launch the “Terminal”
  3. Type the command “sudo snap install vlc” in the Terminal and press Enter.
  4. Enter your sudo password when prompted for authentication.
  5. VLC will automatically download and install.

If the above command throws error or doesn’t work, use the following commands: Type “sudo apt install vlc” or “sudo apt-get install vlc” in the Terminal and press Enter.

Related: 21 Best Video Players for Mac

Installing VLC Using Advanced Package Tool (or APT) or Snap Store for Ubuntu

Installing VLC Using Advanced Package Tool

To install VLC media player on Ubuntu using Advanced Package Tool (APT) and Snap Store:

  1. Open your web browser and type in “apt://vlc” or “snap://vlc” in the URL bar.
  2. Click on the “Open link” button under the “Launch Application” dialog which pops up.
  3. Click on the “Install” button in the Installation of additional software dialog.
  4. Authenticate your login password.
  5. Wait for the installation process to complete.

Related: 43 Different Types of Technology

VLC Alternative Software for Ubuntu Linux

VLC Alternative Software for Ubuntu Linux 2

If you are facing errors while installing VLC on your Ubuntu device, there are several customizable media players available that offer unique playback and video editing features. Here are some media players you can consider:

Related: How to Convert Videos with VLC Media Player (Mac & Windows)



SMPlayer is a versatile media player for Linux, which supports a wide range of video and audio formats. With built-in codecs, it eliminates the need to install third-party codecs. You can play YouTube videos directly from the player, and search for them using optional plugins.

Related: VLC Media Player: Is it still the Best Video Player?

SMPlayer also offers a variety of skins and icon themes for customization, making it easy to personalize the player’s appearance. It lets you search and download subtitles from And includes advanced features like video and audio filters, playback speed change, and audio and subtitles delay change. You can access the player in over 30 languages. SMPlayer offers a more personalized experience and more options for playing back audio or video than VLC.

Overall, SMPlayer is an excellent choice for Linux users who want a media player with extensive features and customization options.

MPV Player

MPV Player 2

MPV Player is a free, powerful media player which allows you to play many media file formats, audio and video codecs, and subtitle types. It boasts a minimalistic design and has a small controller on top of the video for basic control, allowing you to focus on the content you are watching with no distractions.

Related: How to Download a Youtube Video with VLC

Its video output capability is based on OpenGL, Vulkan, and D3D11, which lets you perform advanced video scaling with popular high-quality algorithms, color management, frame timing, interpolation, HDR, and more. MPV Player can leverage most hardware decoding APIs on all platforms, allowing for smooth playback of high- resolution video files.

You can play YouTube and other streaming videos through the command line. Compared to VLC, MPV Player has a more minimalistic design and is for users who prefer a lightweight media player, which can handle a wide variety of file formats and codecs.



Miro is a fantastic free and open-source media player that allows you to play almost any type of video or audio format like MPEG, QuickTime, AVI, H.264, DivX, Windows Media, Flash Video, and more.

You can easily drag and drop your favorite videos into a playlist, or right-click to add them to an existing one. Miro remembers where you left off watching a video and picks up right where you left off when you resume the playback.

Related: How to Convert Videos with VLC Media Player (Mac & Windows)

Miro lets you download videos from various sources, including YouTube, podcasts, Amazon, and BitTorrent. It can convert videos into MP4/h264 format with presets for a wide range of devices and offers fast built in BitTorrent downloading capabilities, making it a great tool for users who frequently download large files.

For anyone looking for an easy-to-use, feature-rich player on Linux, Miro in a great choice to enhance your media experience.

Kodi Media Player

Kodi Media Player 1

Kodi Media Player for Linux supports a wide range of audio and video formats, such as MP3, FLAC, WAV, and WMA. It has a user-friendly interface for watching and recording live TV through various popular backend like MediaPortal, MythTV, and Tvheadend.

Kodi supports playing and viewing of digital media files from local and network storage media, and the internet, allowing you to enjoy videos, music, podcasts, games, and other digital media files. If the appearance doesn’t convince you, Kodi lets entirely change it using a variety of skins.

Kodi offers more functionalities for media management and playback, while VLC has a more lightweight design. For instance, if you are someone who enjoys watching live TV and recording shows, then Kodi is a great option for you. Its user-friendly interface and compatibility with various backend make it easier for you to manage your TV viewing experience.

Haruna Video Player

Haruna Video Player 1

Haruna Video Player is a media player designed to provide you with an exceptional video playback experience. It is an open-source media player built on Qt/QML and libmpv.

It’s ability to play online videos through youtube-dl and supports YouTube playlists, allowing you to stream your favorite videos from popular video-sharing platforms like YouTube, Vimeo, and Dailymotion without leaving the media player.

You can toggle the playlist with mouse-over, enabling you to swiftly move between different videos in a playlist without having to leave the current video. It has an auto-skip chapter feature, which skips chapters that contain certain words. Haruna Video Player is also highly configurable, which lets you set custom shortcuts and mouse buttons.

Haruna Video Player comes with many features and offers a great media experience to users who love to watch online videos, stream playlists, and prefer complete control over their video playback experience.


Can’t find VLC after installation

Once you’ve successfully installed VLC on Ubuntu, finding it is a breeze. Locate the Ubuntu Dash represented by the Ubuntu logo on your screen. Click on it, and type in “VLC” into the search bar. Hit Enter, and the application will pop up. Now you can enjoy your media files seamlessly.

I see the error: snap “vlc” has install-snap” change in progress

If you encounter an error message saying “snap ‘vlc’ has ‘install-snap’ change in progress” while trying to install VLC on Ubuntu, this usually means the snap is already performing another task. Abort the process by typing “sudo snap abort 123” in your terminal and hit enter. Now, try installing VLC again and it should work just fine.

My command isn’t working

If you’re having trouble running a command while trying to install VLC on Ubuntu, the issue could be as simple as the letter case of the command itself. Ensure that you write “VLC” in all lowercase letters. If it’s uppercase, the command won’t work, and you’ll likely see an error message. With this tip in mind, you’ll be able to install VLC with no issues and start enjoying your media files in no time.

About the author:

Photo of Paul Michael, Founder of MediaPeanut

Paul Michael

Paul Michael is a media and technology expert whose research reveals how technology and media are being used in the world today. He has expertise on computers, the internet, streaming, Roku, electronics, and education. He also enjoys graphic design & digital art. Paul has his Bachelors of Arts and Science(s) from Rutgers University-New Brunswick, NJ