How to Update your GNU/Linux System (Debian/Ubuntu)

A typical fault that happens with new users to the GNU/Linux family is the misunderstanding between “update” and “upgrade”. It is important to understand the difference, especially when at starting to use GNU/Linux as your main host operating system.

Starting off, open a terminal emulator of your preference. I am using Terminator on Kcrubuntu (Ubuntu based) Distributions.

Following this, run the following command, followed by your password.

 sudo apt update

You’ll notice that it says “56 packages can be upgraded.” This sometimes baffles new users, as they just ran an update, right?

Wrong. apt update only downloads the packages update information from their repository’s, which in turn checks if the software installed is the latest version.

To actually update the software, we need to use @@sudo apt upgrade@@, but there is actually a better way to learn if you are new to GNU/Linux.

If you have upgraded your software in mind, instead of running 2 commands separately, we can run them together. To do this, run:

 sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y

This will run update, then upgrade and will accept the default settings as yes, so you don’t need to answer yes to any package query’s.

Easy peasy!

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