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How to update all packages on Ubuntu?

All Linux newbies out there, please pay attention. I am going to show you a quick and easy way to update all packages on your Ubuntu computer. This tutorial will be useful for you, even if you use different Ubuntu-based Linux distros like Ubuntu, Linux Mint, Linux Lite, or even Debian-based distros. It is the command-line interface – Terminal.

What do you need? 

Time: 2-3 minutes + downloading and updating time

Root privileges: Yes

Command: apt, apt-get, aptitude, or the application Software Updater. 

I will show you an example with apt command and later with Software Updater. 

How to update all packages on Ubuntu using the Terminal?

Here is how to update all packages on Ubuntu with Terminal, step-by-step guide:

  1. Let’s first fire up the Terminal. Just click on the Terminal’s icon on your desktop or press the combination of buttons Ctrl+Alt+T.  
  2. Write the text command sudo apt update. A message will appear, asking you to put your password. After writing it down, press the Enter button. The password is needed to get root access (sudo).
  3. Now the computer will update the repositories, not the packages yet. It will show you the info about what is available for updating. To get a more detailed list of each package, use the apt list –upgradable
  4. To update all of the packages that are available, directly type sudo apt upgrade. You will need to write your password again, and after that, Ubuntu will show you the data that must be downloaded. It will ask for confirmation once more.
  5. Wait until Ubuntu finishes the updating process. Done! 

Pro tip! 

You can unite the commands in one! You can use the && and perform one command after another. And we will add –y to directly accept when Ubuntu asks us to confirm the updates.

Type this text:  sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y

Ubuntu will need your password, provide it, and press the Enter again.

How to update all packages on Ubuntu using Software Updater (Package Updater)?

Now let’s use the graphic interface to update.

  1. Find the Software Updater and open it. You can use the search bar to find it fast. 
  2. Wait until it finishes checking for available updates. This might take a while. 
  3. A simple message will appear with options to install now or later. Press Install Now. Ubuntu will ask you for your password. Write it and then press Authenticate.
  4. Now you will need to wait until Ubuntu download the updates and install them. Bear in mind that some updates might ask you to restart your device. 

Remove what is not in use anymore

I just can’t stop giving you extra tips, can I? Here it is one more command: sudo apt autoremove. It will remove additional components that applications don’t use anymore. This can free up some space and just remove parts that are no longer needed. 

Wrap it up

If you are coming from another OS, you will discover that Ubuntu is not that scary. Update all packages is not a challenging task, and it takes just a few minutes. 

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