Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Friday, March 2, 2018 at 17:50

Ubuntu 16.04.4 has been released in 1 March 2018. This is the latest update for now, the fourth point release (or "service pack") after 16.04.3 of Ubuntu 16.04 LTS "Xenial Xerus". This tutorial explains how to upgrade your Ubuntu 16.04 to this latest point release. You can also practice this upgrade for all Ubuntu Official Flavors 16.04 which are Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, and so on. Enjoy!

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Your Tools

You will use these two programs to upgrade Ubuntu: 'Software Updater' and 'Software & Updates'. They are black circle and brown box icons on menu, respectively (see picture below). You use 'S. & Updates' program to set the download addresses, then you use 'S. Updater' to perform the upgrade process.

Left: Software Updater, right: Software & Updates

If you do not use those two programs, and instead use Terminal, then you will use 3 command lines: first apt-get update, then apt-get upgrade, and finally apt-get dist-upgrade.

Prepare Power Management

Disable automatic sleep, disable suspend/hibernate, disable lock screen so your upgrade process will not be interrupted. Do those jobs on System Settings > Power.

Power: set 'Don't suspend' for all

Prepare Free Space

You must have at least 1GB free space to upgrade. Upgrade is downloading hundred of MB of packages (+/- 600MB) and installing them takes twice-trice of space (+/- 1GB up to 2GB). Do not upgrade unless you have enough free space!

Example: 7GB of free space = enough

Prepare Sources.list

Make sure you enable xenial-security, xenial-updates, xenial-backports download sources. Do it on Software & Updates > Updates tab > give check marks > select 'For any new version' on the last selection > Close. See picture below.

Enable 3 download sources, select notify 'For any new version'

Disable Any PPA

It's better to disable PPA download sources to prevent any conflict with the upgrade. To disable them, go to Software & Updates window > Other Software tab > uncheck all items > Close.

Other Software: uncheck all items


Note: if your download speed is 1MB/s++, normally you will need at least 1 hour for whole upgrading process.

There are two methods: using Software Updater (GUI) or using Terminal (CLI). For most users (especially beginners), choose the easiest one by using Software Updater. However, the Terminal way is explained below if you prefer it over GUI way.

Software Updater: notice 600MB download needed

Go to 'Software Updater' program > press 'Install Now' button > you will be asked for password > enter your password > OK > Software Updater upgrading your Ubuntu > wait until it's finished > your Ubuntu upgraded to 16.04.4.

The upgrading

Upgrade using Terminal:

For most users, use Software Updater and don't use Terminal. However, if you prefer Terminal, using Terminal will show you more details like how much time remaining and download speed while processing. Run these 3 commands one after one until they're all finished. After these, your Ubuntu upgraded to 16.04.4.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get --yes upgrade
$ sudo apt-get --yes dist-upgrade

How it looks like:

apt-get upgrade with 200KB/s for 500MB download


Right before upgrading, if you find error such as "Failed to download repo information" on Software Updater window, or same error "Error in appstreamcli" on Terminal, then you can fix it by this command line:

$ sudo apt install --reinstall libappstream3

This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.