How to Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 LTS to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

Ubuntu Upgrade 1804 2004 Featured Image

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS was released on April 23 and ships with tons of improved features and software enhancements. If you are currently running Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, this guide will show you how to upgrade from Ubuntu 18.04 LTS to 20.04 LTS.

Back up and Test First

Before you do anything, make sure you back up your important data first. Luckily, Ubuntu comes with a backup utility built in so you can make use of that.

Ubuntu Upgrade1804 2004 Backup First

Alternatively, you can just choose to back up the individual files that you know you want to keep. Backup tools like Timeshift are also useful. You even have the choice of creating an image of your installation with Gnome Disk Utility or with software like Clonezilla.

If you want to be super cautious, you can also create an Ubuntu 20.04 live disk and use this to test out the OS on your machine. This will let you catch any quirks before you actually carry out the installation.

Before getting started, you should also make sure that you install all of the available updates for your current version of Ubuntu. You can do so with the command:

sudo apt update && sudo apt -y upgrade

Different Methods of Upgrading From Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04

Ubuntu Update Manager

Now that Ubuntu 20.04.1 has been released, you should be able to carry out the update from within the Ubuntu update manager. You can launch the update manager by typing update-manager in the terminal and run your update from there. With this method, you will be able to carry out your update using only a GUI. Simply select “Upgrade,” and let the process run until completion.

Upgrading to 20.04 via a Wizard

To upgrade, you will need to run the following command:

sudo do-release-upgrade -d -f DistUpgradeViewGtk3

This starts the upgrade process with a Gtk3-based GUI.

Ubuntu Upgrade1804 2004 Upgrade Gui

Hit “Upgrade” and the process will begin to run on your machine.

Before the upgrade actually starts, you will be asked to confirm that you want to carry out the upgrade.

Ubuntu Upgrade1804 2004 Upgrade Confirm

Your lock screen will be disabled until your system reboots after the update is completed.

Ubuntu Upgrade1804 2004 Upgrade Lock Screen Disabled

You will be notified of the progress through the GUI.

Ubuntu Upgrade1804 2004 Upgrade Notification

It will take several minutes for this process to complete, so please be patient. Reboot your machine after the upgrade has been completed. You may have to respond to some prompts here and there.

Ubuntu Upgrade 1804 2004 Complete
Ubuntu Upgrade1804 2004 Complete Verification

Upgrading the GUI

If you don’t care for the GUI, you can simply run the command below:

sudo do-release-upgrade -d

This will run the upgrade process in the terminal. Any user interaction will take place via the command line with this method.

Other things to consider

If you have third-party software installed, you may need to add the -allow-third-party flag to the upgrade command above. Some software such as VirtualBox, Skype, and Google Chrome is updated through software channels outside of the standard Ubuntu archives.

Wrapping Up

If you are still wondering if Ubuntu 20.04 is worth the upgrade, check out our review on Ubuntu 20.04. If you have decided to upgrade from Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04, please peruse this information carefully so that you can safely upgrade without any issues.

William Elcock
William Elcock

William has been fiddling with tech for as long as he remembers. This naturally transitioned into helping friends with their tech problems and then into tech blogging.

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