Fix Ubuntu Software Center not loading issue in Ubuntu 16.04 LTS

“No Application Data Found” issue in Ubuntu Software

Did you just install Ubuntu 16.04 on your computer only to figure out that the Ubuntu Software Center is not loading? Multiple users have reported that the Software Center always shows “No Application Data Found”. This is a known problem, and I too faced the exact same issue on one of my test PCs.

Ubuntu Software Center Error
Ubuntu Software Center Error

Fortunately, fix to this problem is easy and straightforward. An update was released by the Ubuntu team which had fixed the issue.

Canonical knows about the issue and since then they have issued an updated Ubuntu Software Center.

However, if you have a fresh Ubuntu 16.04 installation, the updated Software Center is not yet installed on your computer because the update is not included in the downloaded Ubuntu ISO builds.

Fix Ubuntu 16.04 Software Center not loading apps issue

Step 1) Launch ‘Terminal’.

Step 2) Run the following command to update the repository sources.

sudo apt-get update

Step 3) Now install the updates.

sudo apt-get upgrade

Wait for the process to finish. Try reopening Ubuntu Software Center. Did it fix the issue? For most of the users, the problem should end here. For some reason, if the issue is not solved yet, try to reinstall gnome software. Follow steps 4 & 5.

Step 4) Run the following command to remove gnome software.

sudo apt-get autoremove gnome-software

Step 5) Use this command to reinstall gnome software.

sudo apt-get install gnome-software

Synaptic Package Manager

Still no luck? In such case, you can use Synaptic Package Manager as an alternative to the Ubuntu Software Center. You will get all the applications that are in Ubuntu Software Center in Synaptic too.

Step 6) Launch Terminal and run the following command to install synaptic.

sudo apt-get install synaptic

Step 7) Launch it from ‘Applications’.

Did any of the above fixes work for you? Do let us know your experience in comments below.

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41 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you for making this tutorial and writing instructions so clearly (I’m a beginner). For me it works again after step 3!

  2. no still not working the error is E: Package ‘gnome-software’ has no installation candidate

    and then after install syntax error is
    E: Unable to correct problems, you have held broken packages.

    what the hell am i supposed to do

  3. wow, scratching my head. No software candidates.
    i have lost software operation since STUDIO 17.10. Man the install time is L O N G and slow and first start/run is S L O W. This is BOTH 17.10 and 18.04. The speed seems to pick up after the upgrade window appears and you select it but the software window is sparse on apps. My latest install has only 2 games and it won’t let me download, web or term and additional programs/apps. The forum fixes only return “NO CANDIDATE AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD”… 16.04 at least ran and had some apps in the software center but there seems to be a big problem with the 17.xx.xx and 18.xx.xx distros. something is missing or does not install and the upgrade does not address this problem. Up to this point, it is NOT fixable by terminal commands and I have probably tried hundreds after searching for help.. I really like STUDIO and think it is a really stable program HOWEVER, its software is lacking to the point that I may have to move to a different distro. Just thought I’d throw that out there.

  4. followed all steps, no luck. Synaptic isn’t found by Applications. Software updater also isn’t working. I’m getting a persistent error relating to a Download Helper coapp.

  5. Found article a little confusing. The picture on top is not of software-center, but of Ubuntu Software (aka gnome-software). I read in another site that “software-center was abandoned in 16.04 in favor of gnome-software You should use that. If you really want to install the old one type sudo apt install software-center in a terminal…”
    sources:
    https://askubuntu.com/questions/1035243/cant-find-the-ubuntu-software-center
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNOME_Software

    I tried the steps in your article but it didn’t fix things for me. My Ubuntu Software seems to be missing a categories section & there are no user reviews.

    Since I couldn’t fix (or didn’t like) the new Ubuntu Software, I installed the old software-center. I use them both now. I use the old software-center to get information on the app & search for apps. But, I use the new Ubuntu Software to actually install the app (I guess I trust it more cause it’s recommended).

    They look a little similar, so to help tell them apart I look at the name and version information from the about menu for each application:
    Ubuntu Software (v 3.20.5)
    software-center (v 15.12)

    My system is a fresh install of Ubuntu 16.04.5 with all updates done.

  6. Thank you very much Kiran
    I followed the instructions and the installation process was flawless.
    Adobe Reader is working perfectly, so I finally have the option of opening multiple documents on different tabs as opposed to different windows (as happens with other software).
    By the way, I am using a very old laptop: 32 bits, less than 1Gb RAM, Linux Mint 19, and it does not crash.

  7. Thanks from me, too – three steps to heaven!
    As a novice I would have appreciated a warning about the length of the process on my admittedly puny machine

  8. Super cool, I didn’t get any solution for my problem because by mistake I installed a harmful app that had virus and that caused my software install to stop working as I open it it was loading and loading.. but still I love linux, thanks for the volunteers who built and developed linux for this platform. @ Kiran Kumar A special thanks to you and continue the good umm.. great job you’re doing.. Again thanks a lot to all linux patrons it may be the developers or the ones who fund linux.. Even I fund and support linux..

  9. Extraodinary! Worked for me in step 3! I really appreciate linux – developers and patrons.. A thanks to Kiran Kumar..

  10. Great! Thanks it worked for me too in step 3. I really appreciate linux – developers and patrons.. A thanks to Kiran Kumar..

  11. Hi! I’m Meera Harikrishnan, I’m a software engineer in Infosys, Chennai and linux helped me for writing and practising commands in home. It is free too. I give a thumbs up and applause to all the ones who are the reason for the development of linux today.. It may be the developers or the patrons.Past 6 months even im funding linux $41 for 2 months that is ₹3000 for 2 months.
    Thanks my dear buddy Linux!!!

  12. This worked for the apps that i installed recently and were not working. But for the apps that i installed a while back, the problem persists. Thanks a lot anyway!

  13. Yeah, worked for me, but just for a day. I removed and installed gnome software how many times, but everytime this problem shows up AGAIN! 🙁

  14. I had the same issue. There was a conflict with the snap store. Running ‘killall snap-store’ in a terminal then relaunching the app fixed it.

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