There have been a few questions lately on problems with tlmgr on Linux (specifically Debian/Ubuntu) being the wrong version ("you cannot use TL2021 tlmgr to update TL2022" or similar).

Is it worth having one 'definitive' answer (as a Community Wiki), which we can refer people to? I can see from the often referenced questions that there is a (quite old, but somewhat detailed) description of installing TeXLive on Debian. While this is fine for installing, it doesn't seem to cover the problems with attempting to install the latest version when there is a previous version already present. A few questions have had the problem of a previous version being there, unknown to the user, as a dependency of something else due to the package manager, and the previous version is generally the one selected by sudo.

I am happy to write up a question and start the answer if people think that it is a worthwhile endeavour.

  • 1
    This would definitely be a useful standard reference. I'd also be very interested in an authoritative answer, that tlmgr can't be used to update at least in user mode seems to be the reality of at least the Debian version, but I don't think that's universally true for any packaged version of TeX Live (though you would still be stuck to that TL version if it wasn't kept up to date).
    – Dai Bowen
    Mar 2, 2023 at 16:48
  • 2
    We have this question: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/55437/… which is quite extensive and also tex.stackexchange.com/questions/107017/….
    – Alan Munn
    Mar 2, 2023 at 20:14
  • 1
    Doesn't sound like a bad idea so just do it and let the search engine decide if it's worthy.
    – Symbol 1
    Mar 7, 2023 at 3:40


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