How to Install FFMPEG 4.4 via PPA in Ubuntu 20.04, 18.04

Last updated: October 16, 2022


FFmpeg 4.4 “Rao” now can be installed in all current Ubuntu releases easily via an Ubuntu PPA.

FFmpeg is a free and open-source solution to record, convert and stream audio and video. The major 4.4 version was released almost a months ago with PGX decoder, AV1 encoding support SVT-AV1, AV1 decoder with hardware acceleration used only, AV1 VAAPI decoder, and so many other new features.

Thanks to Rob Savoury, an Ubuntu PPA is available contains the packages for all current Ubuntu releases.

Upgrading FFmpeg is not recommended for beginners unless you know what you’re going to do.

It may remove your applications or cause dependency issue for some multi-media apps that depends on specified version of a media library.

1.) Add the PPA:

Firstly open terminal either from system app launcher or by pressing Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard. When it opens, run the command below to add the PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:savoury1/ffmpeg4

Type user password (no asterisk feedback) when it asks and hit Enter to continue.

2.) (Optional) Add optional PPAs:

For newest versions of graphics and multimedia dependencies, you can also add the following PPAs by running commands one by one:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:savoury1/graphics
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:savoury1/multimedia

3.) Finally install / update FFmpeg:

As a widely used media library, it’s mostly installed on your system. So you can run command to upgrade it in terminal:

sudo apt full-upgrade

NOTE: using Software Updater is not recommended in the case. It may keep back FFmpeg since old libraries may be required for some apps, Pitivi in the case.

4.) Check FFmpeg version:

Once installed, run command to check software version:

ffmpeg -version

How to Restore Stock FFmpeg version:

You can purge the Ubuntu PPA which will also downgrade FFmpeg libraries to the stock version in Ubuntu. Also purging the FFmpeg PPA may also remove some apps for unknown reasons :(.

Firstly install ppa-purge tool via command:

sudo apt install ppa-purge

Then purge the PPAs one by one:

sudo ppa-purge ppa:savoury1/graphics
sudo ppa-purge ppa:savoury1/multimedia
sudo ppa-purge ppa:savoury1/ffmpeg4


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9 responses to How to Install FFMPEG 4.4 via PPA in Ubuntu 20.04, 18.04

  1. Tomáš Janata May 24, 2021 at 5:19 am


    I tried to upgrade FFmpeg to version 4.4 according to in the article mentioned instructions (running Bodhi Linux 5.1.0 64bit). Unfortunatelly, after installation of all 3 packages, I completely lost sound on my system (built-in audio analog stereo was no more available on the system). I spent a lot of hours trying to solve this problem. Finally, only PPA-purge (I purged all 3 packages) helped me to get sound back on my system. Maybe another users have the same experience?

    • I’m not using Bodhi Linux, but upgrading FFmpeg library should not affect the sound server.

      You may try adding only “ppa:savoury1/ffmpeg4” PPA, and skip this two optional PPAs in step 2.) which may cause the issue.

    • I am using Ubuntu 20.04, I did the exact same thing last night (upgraded ffmpeg to version 4.4) and encoded some videos over the night. The first thing I did when I woke up was check out the output videos. Though I didn’t completely lost the sound on my system, it’s still messed up, like the sound is stuttering during the course of the video so I ended up purging all the 3 packages. I’ll follow the author’s advice below and see what’s gonna happen from there. :)

  2. Lately the installation is giving issues in downloading from launchpad both on my local environment and on my amazon server. I doubt it’s a problem on my end since it’s happening on both environments.

    This is an extract of the error:
    E: Failed to fetch Could not connect to (, connection timed out

    E: Unable to fetch some archives, maybe run apt-get update or try with –fix-missing?
    The command ‘/bin/sh -c apt-get install -y –no-install-recommends gnupg2 fonts-noto-cjk pulseaudio supervisor curl x11vnc wget xvfb sudo vim curl gnupg ca-certificates xz-utils alsa-utils alsa-tools libaio1 libaio-dev alsa-base ffmpeg xdotool’ returned a non-zero code: 100

    • It’s normally a network connection issue. Got into same issue occasionally, and usually fixed via a network change or re-try later.

  3. I just wanted to let you know that this PPA maintainer has suspended updating and bug reports for everything other than “Xenial” due to lack of donations. The PPA will work, but you’ll get no support or updates as of the date of this writing.

  4. Update to FYI as of Jan 21 2022 it seems that savoury1 has started maintaining this ppa again.

  5. installing this PPA is risky – when an update was due, it attempted to delete many wanted files from the computer. I contacted the PPA maintainer for advice, but he is extremely unhelpful, aggressive and unpleasant.

    • It could be that “many wanted files” depend on existing FFmpeg package in your system. Installing the new FFmpeg packages from the PPA try to override the old ones as well as removing all files that depend on it.

      So I mentioned in tutorial that it’s not recommended for beginners.