How to Upgrade Ubuntu to the Latest Version

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Ubuntu has developed their own automatic way of upgrading between releases. It essentially scripts the traditional Debian approach. This way, you can set it up to upgrade and walk away. Ubuntu will handle the rest.

The latest Ubuntu release marks an opportunity for both LTS users and people on the previous release to update Ubuntu and take advantage of the latest features. This tutorial demonstrates step by step how to upgrade Ubuntu to the latest version.


Before starting with this guide assumes that you have a system running Ubuntu (to check current release lsb_release -a) make sure you are logged in as a user with sudo privileges for administrative tasks.

As with almost any upgrade between major releases of an operating system, this process carries an inherent risk of failure, data loss, or broken software configuration. Comprehensive backups and extensive testing are strongly advised.

Step 1: Update and Upgrade Ubuntu Packages

Before starting the release upgrade, it is recommended to update all your currently installed packages to their latest versions.

sudo apt update&&upgrade

You will be prompted to continue. Answer Y for yes and press Enter

Once it finishes, use the dist-upgrade command, which will perform upgrades involving changing dependencies, adding or removing new packages as necessary

sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

You will be prompted to continue. Answer Y for yes and press Enter


To upgrade to the latest non-LTS development release, set Prompt=normal in /etc/update-manager/release-upgrades.

sudo nano /etc/update-manager/release-upgrades/
# Default behavior for the release upgrader.

# Default prompting behavior, valid options:
#  never  - Never check for a new release.
#  normal - Check to see if a new release is available.  If more than one new
#           release is found, the release upgrader will attempt to upgrade to
#           the release that immediately succeeds the currently-running
#           release.
#  lts    - Check to see if a new LTS release is available.  The upgrader
#           will attempt to upgrade to the first LTS release available after
#           the currently-running one.  Note that this option should not be
#           used if the currently-running release is not itself an LTS
#           release, since in that case the upgrader won't be able to
#           determine if a newer release is available.


Press Ctrl/Cmd + X and then press Y and ENTER to save changes

Step 2: Upgrade Ubuntu to the Latest Release

First, make sure you have the update-manager-core package installed:

sudo apt-get install update-manager-core

Ubuntu provides a tool called do-release-upgrade which makes the upgrade a pretty straightforward process. The tool should already be installed on your system but if for some reason it is not installed you can install it with:

sudo apt install do-release-upgrade

Start to upgrade

sudo do-release-upgrade

Next, you’ll be informed that upgrades and prompted to continue. Answer Y for yes and press Enter

The LXD recommended 3.0 for production and use “Latest” if interested in latest futures. Use the arrow key on the keyboard to select and press tab to OK then Enter

Use the arrow key on the keyboard to select and press tab to OK then Enter

Step 3: Confirm Upgrade

You can also check the Ubuntu version by using the following command:

No LSB modules are available.
Distributor ID: Ubuntu
Description:    Ubuntu 18.10
Release:        18.10
Codename:       cosmic

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