Ubuntu – How to fix a 404 Error when using a PPA or updating the package lists

aptpparepository

PPA seems to be constantly offline. Whenever I use sudo apt-get update, this error is shown:

W: Failed to fetch http://ppa.launchpad.net/ 404  Not Found

How do I fix these errors?

Best Answer

  • Automated removal

    skip to the bottom of this answer for a scripted way to remove offending software-sources for all ubuntu versions prior to Ubuntu 15.04

    What are 404 errors

    The 404 or Not Found error message is a HTTP standard response code indicating that the client was able to communicate with the server, but the server could not find what was requested.

    The web site hosting server will typically generate "404 - Page Not Found" web page, when users attempts to follow a broken or dead link.

    What are the causes of these errors in update-manager

    Typically, three main areas cause these errors in update-manager

    1. A user has just upgraded and has re-enabled a PPA software-source that no longer exists enter image description here
    2. A user has manually typed in a new software source incorrectly enter image description here
    3. A PPA was added, but the maintainer has subsequently deleted some/all of the PPA

    where are these software-sources

    PPAs typically are saved in one of two locations

    1. /etc/apt/sources.list
    2. in an appropriately named file with a .list file-extension in /etc/apt/sources.list.d/ for example webupd8team-jupiter-natty.list

    This list file typically contains:

    deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/webupd8team/jupiter/ubuntu oneiric main
    # deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/webupd8team/jupiter/ubuntu oneiric main
    

    Note a # at the front of a line of text means that it is commented out and is not checked by the package manager.

    How to eliminate these errors

    Typically, if you run sudo apt-get update from a terminal or click the details button in Update Manager after hitting the refresh button you will see errors such as:

    enter image description here

    If the error is due to a PPA - usually unticking the similarly named PPA with the URL shown in the error message will resolve this.

    enter image description here

    If the 404 error was due to an additional repository that has been added to /etc/apt/sources.list then its easier to add # character to the start of the line to comment out the offending repository i.e.

    gksu gedit /etc/apt/sources.list
    

    enter image description here

    More info

    Here is a bug report on the update manager to solve this problem:

    If you are getting these problems without PPAs, check out this question: