Upgrading Ubuntu 16.04 Desktop to 18.04

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS final release is just around the corner. however, if you want to upgrade from 16.04 to 18.04 version today, you can. this brief tutorial is going to show students and new users how to upgrade Ubuntu 16.04 ( Xenial Xerus ) to 18.04 (Bionic Beaver) today for testing purposes.

Remember that 18.04 is still in and not ready to be used in production. however you can upgrade to begin testing new features that are coming soon. In most cases, installing a new desktop on your machine might be the best way to go. but some users aren’t that technical. so they may choose to upgrade instead.

If you’re in the mood to upgrade your Ubuntu desktop today, follow the steps below to get it done. new users and students should find the steps below useful when deciding to upgrade Ubuntu 16.04.

Step 1: Setup Ubuntu 16.04 Desktop for LTS Releases

Ubuntu 16.04 is a LTS release. so you should be able to upgrade to the next LTS release easily. since 18.04 is also an LTS release, upgrading should be smooth. To set Ubuntu or validate that it’s configured for LTS releases, open Ubuntu Dash or Dashboard and search for Software & Updates. then select it to open.

ubuntu 16.04 update

When it opens, select the Updates tab and validate that Notify me of a new Ubuntu version is set for long-term support versions or (LTS). If not, select it and save your changes and close out.

ubuntu 16.04 upgrade

Step 2: Update Ubuntu 16.04 Desktops

Before upgrading Ubuntu you should always make sure the desktop is updated with the latest packages. This is the standard process. To update Ubuntu packages, open Dash again and search for Software Updater, then select to open it.

ubuntu 16.04 upgrade

When it opens, click the button to Install Now

ubuntu upgrade

Doing that should install packages that are waiting to be upgraded. After that, you can then begin upgrading to the latest Ubuntu desktop versions.

Step 3: Upgrading Ubuntu to the Next Version

Now that Ubuntu is updated, press Alt + F2 on your keyboard to open the run command box. this box allows you to run Ubuntu commands. when it opens, type the commands below to press Enter.

update-manager -cd

ubuntu upgrade

After that, it should open the upgrade wizard to upgrade Ubuntu

ubuntu upgrade

Click the Upgrade button to begin the wizard. follow the on-screen instructions and continue

ubuntu upgrade wizard

When everything is ready, click the Start Upgrade button

ubuntu 18.04 upgrade

Depending on the speed of your Internet, then shouldn’t take too long. after Ubuntu is upgraded, you should be able to restart and start using the new Ubuntu!

ubuntu update


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  1. Awesome tutorial, thanks. But why that update-manager -cd is required? why normal update manager will not work?

  2. the -cd switch is what allows you to upgrade from the supported release you are on to a dev release version

  3. See I got the notification to update, so I took help of your site for an understanding but then, when the process was completed, a box appeared saying- Failed to download package files, Check your internet connection
    but the connection is completely okay.
    please help asap!

  4. great instruction – all was just as described except restart did complete (froze on Ubuntu screen). What now? Any suggestions?

  5. Thanks for your instruction

    But my ubuntu has stopped at ‘installing the upgrades’ step.
    It was ‘checking for installed snaps’ but the window has been blacked and seems ‘de-activated’.

    But I can open the firefox and terminal.

    What should I do here?

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