How to Enable Automatic System Update in Ubuntu

Ubuntu checks for a system update every day and prompts you when there is a newer version of a software or system update available. If you would like to automate the whole updating process so it can install the update automatically in the background, here is how you can do so.

In Ubuntu, open the “Software & Updates” application. This is what you will see:

ubuntu-software-and-updates

Go to the “Updates” tab. In the section “When there are security updates,” select from the dropdown “Download and Install automatically”.

ubuntu-software-auto-update

Make sure you also check the boxes beside “Important security updates,” “Recommend updates” and “unsupported updates.” This will automate the updating of system files as well as all the software you have installed (from repository or via PPA).

Click “Close.” That’s it.

Enable auto update in Ubuntu server

If you are running a Ubuntu server and would like to automate the security update, here is the way to do it.

Type the following command in the SSH session:

A pink window will appear and ask if you want to get the system to automatically download and install stable updates. Select “Yes.”

ubuntu-server-unattended-upgrades

It will then reconfigure the system to automatically install stable updates. That’s it.

Let us know if this works for you.

4 comments

  1. Thanks for the tip!

  2. Without the ability to pick the time of day this doesn’t have a lot of value.

    1. It may not be useful to you, but doesn’t mean it don’t have value. I am sure it is very useful for others, even without the time options.

    2. What about using “anacron” instead of “cron”? It is oriented for desktops and notebooks that aren’t on all the time. With anacron, this article has a huge value. ;-)

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