Fix for rhythmbox not playing mp3 in Ubuntu karmic

My Rhythmbox won't play my music anymore after upgrading to 9.10 so here is what i did i hope this helps for some users

Following Procedure worked for me

First i removed Rhythmbox using the following command

sudo apt-get remove rhythmbox --purge

Update the sourcelist

sudo apt-get update

re-installed Rhythmbox

sudo apt-get install rhythmbox

Now you try to open mp3 file Rhythmbox and it will ask you to install additional plugins install them

Now restart Rhythmbox it should work without any problem

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18 Responses

  1. hosh says:

    i think only upgraders have this problem.. i did a clean install.. and it works just fine..

  2. Ubuntu Hater says:

    Doesnt work for me, and I upgraded my version of ubuntu. Rhythmbox finds no plugins to install.

    Lets face it, ubuntu sucks.

  3. jon says:

    ubuntu sucks… 4 the weak minded

  4. Newb says:

    It didn’t work for me either.

    Oh yeah people saying things like

    “ubuntu sucks… 4 the weak minded”

    or the famous: “What did you pay for it”

    Are the main reasons Linux will never become mainstream. People who have lives don’t want to spend their time trying to figure out why something that ought to work doesn’t work, and then be insulted when they’re unable to. Personally I think Linux has it’s good points. The main problem it has is with those who are blinded into thinking that every

  5. Newb says:

    (must have prematurly hit the send key)

    …one has a background in computer science. The people who think this way ought to ask themselves how many mainstream operating systems require their users to use command prompt on a regular basis? Or how many major distributions require the users to dig around to find ways to get things like mp3 players to work (which never happens in a major distribution). I know people are doing this in their spare time, but if you really want Linux to become mainstream you need to realize that there are some things that normal people don’t want to have to put up with. It should be designed with the idea in mind that they should have to put up with it.

  6. Efren says:


    any major distrobution couldn’t just put your mp3 or other codecs because they are NOT FREE. You need to pay royalty and some stuff licensing to include their codecs.If mp3 and other codecs formats was FREE for redistribution without fear of being drag to court and pay some hefty fine and intellectual properties rights brouhaha then all linux distro have included it in their distro. Just think on the other side (put yourself on the other “shoes”) Most don’t want you to tinker with the command line. That’s why they are thinking of making it easier and if you cant do such simple task then you’re welcome to pay for you’re OS. nobody is forcing you to use linux and not all distro are aiming to be newbie friendly.

    Good day!

  7. ProjectH says:

    Come on guys, the guy/gal is asking about the solution, I have the same problem and I’m trying to know how to fix it through the internet. I found this page during my search, and it’s not quite helpful. We need solution not argument, so if anyone knows how to fix this problem please share your knowledge with us. Thanks in advance.

  8. I was having a similar problem when upgrading from Hardy Heron. And it still failed after I tried to reinstall it. Turns out that rhythmbox now stores its configuration files in


    instead of


    Therefore you might need to delete the configuration files from this old location before reinstalling the app will work.

  9. Theo says:

    I thought i solved it! I mean the first solution didn’t work at all so i’d tried different things… I searched for multiverse variants on synaptics and I install things related to id3 (that’s the error showed on rhythmbox) like python-id3 and libtagc0, i’m not sure but try something like that maybe it’s work!

  10. Andy says:

    Go to the ubuntu software center and type in mp3. You can then download the restricted extras.
    It added mp3 as an option to rip too.

  11. Ytse Wolf says:

    This worked for me.

    sudo apt-get install streamer

  12. DigiMouk says:

    This problem is not experienced if music was ripped to FLAC or OGG format.

  13. Mike Shafer says:

    Hey All!

    Using Synaptic Package Manager and installing the
    ubuntu-restricted-extras resolved the problem with Rhythmbox not handling mp3s.


  14. dehumanizer says:

    Ihe package ubuntu-restricted-extras resolved my problem too!


  15. George says:

    I had a new install of Karmic and Rhythmbox wouldn’t work for me. I searched extensively on the internet and Ubuntu forums and bricked my OS trying to do a broadbased update (which I still don’t understand why that happened), with no success. Tried this and it worked! I literally stood up and cheered! You rock!

  16. Matthew says:

    I got it…after doing a clean install, and throwing away my livecd, I tried to open an MP3 in Totem. It suggest 3 new packages, I automatically did an install of them via Synaptic, and fixed the problem. Now…Ubuntu, just works. 😀

  17. Jesse says:

    It worked for me. Prior to reinstalling rythmbox, I downloaded a couple of plugins.

  18. Stuart says:


    From Synaptic select.


    Ubuntu cannot add certain decoders etc because of rights issues. This includes .mp3

    I wish they made this obvious though.

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