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Thread: 16.04 LTS - can't update

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
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    19

    16.04 LTS - can't update

    Good afternoon,

    I'm running 16.04 LTS, and the Update icon has disappeared from the System Settings list. I don't know how, when or why that happened. I need to update/upgrade because the version of Firefox is too old (63.03), and I can't access some on-line webinars (they only support Firefox versions newer than 68). I had a problem with an update a couple years ago, when after the update my GUI and desktop disappeared. I worked with the Forum to fix that problem. Maybe that was when this problem started. Every now and then the OS sends me a notice about updating, and when I click the "Update" button, nothing happens.

    Any suggestions on how to go about upgrading to 18.04 LTS or 19.10?

    My laptop is a Lenovo Flex 3-1480. It's set up as dual-boot, Windows 10 and Ubuntu 16.04 LTS.

    Can I just download 18.04 and install it over 16.04? If that were to happen, I won't lose any data or software. And I think it would still keep the Windows partition, since Windows 10 is already installed and has a partition/size on the hard drive.

    Thanks,

    Paul

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    You can get the newest Firefox by installing the Firefox snap package into Ubuntu 16.04. That would be without any risk to your data. Once the snap is installed, you can remove the original Firefox but don't need to.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Xubuntu 19.10 Eoan Ermine

    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    Quote Originally Posted by ewog View Post
    If that were to happen, I won't lose any data or software.
    You should backup your personal data and after that delete the old Ubuntu install completely. Don't recycle config files and the like as they could bring bad manners into the pristine new environment.
    Bringing old hardware back to life. About problems due to upgrading.
    Please visit Quick Links -> Unanswered Posts.
    Don't use this space for a list of your hardware. It only creates false hits in the search engines.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    103
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    Kubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver

    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    Quote Originally Posted by ewog View Post
    Any suggestions on how to go about upgrading to 18.04 LTS or 19.10?Paul
    Try

    sudo do-release-upgrade

    You might need to run

    sudo apt-get install update-manager-core

    before that if update manager is not installed and backing up /etc and /home is definitely recommended.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Xubuntu 19.10 Eoan Ermine

    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    It seems you've had trouble installing upgrades for quite a while. You should be at Firefox 72 by now. And it's not just Firefox, most likely a lot of your software is outdated.

    There are two things we can try. First, we can try to get your upgrades working again. 16.04 is still supported (for about 15 months), so that may do it. If you want to attempt this, try updating via the command line and show us the output. It may give us some useful error messages:
    Code:
    sudo apt update
    sudo apt upgrade
    Or you can simply wipe your system and move on to a more recent release of Ubuntu. You'll have to do that within 15 months anyway, so you can do so just as well right now. Release upgrades don't fix the package manager (and are unlikely to work, given that your package manager is broken), so make it a fresh install. To make the problem go away, make it a clean install, formatting the partition. If your documents are on a separate partition, you can keep them, but make backups anyway. Also wipe your user config files. Much of what's in there is no longer relevant and may cause problems.

    I recommend the second option: a clean install.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Ubuntu Mate 16.04 Xenial Xerus

    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    +1 for Impavidus's post to do update/upgrade cycle. DO NOT attempt the do-release-upgrade until you are fully patched with no warnings or errors first. Also, before doing any release-upgrade, a full system backup is mandatory.

    I'm on 16.04. My system was patched last Saturday:
    Code:
    $ dpkg -l |grep firefox
    ii  firefox        72.0.1+build1-0ubuntu0.16.04.1     amd64   Safe and easy web browser from Mozilla
    I'm not using any PPA or snaps.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
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    19

    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    Good morning, Everyone -

    Appreciate the quick responses! I'm taking this one step at a time, so here is what I found. I followed Impavidus' advice for Update command, and here are the results:

    ktm@LittleMan:~$ apt update
    Reading package lists... Done
    W: chmod 0700 of directory /var/lib/apt/lists/partial failed - SetupAPTPartialDirectory (1: Operation not permitted)
    E: Could not open lock file /var/lib/apt/lists/lock - open (13: Permission denied)
    E: Unable to lock directory /var/lib/apt/lists/
    W: Problem unlinking the file /var/cache/apt/pkgcache.bin - RemoveCaches (13: Permission denied)
    W: Problem unlinking the file /var/cache/apt/srcpkgcache.bin - RemoveCaches (13: Permission denied)

    ktm@LittleMan:~$ sudo apt update
    [sudo] password for ktm:
    Reading package lists... Done
    Building dependency tree
    Reading state information... Done
    All packages are up to date.
    ktm@LittleMan:~$ ^C

    I don't understand why running APT UPDATE from a lower level of authority yields "Operation Not Permitted" and "Permission Denied" messages, yet SUDO APT UPDATE yields that all is well with the world and all packages are up to date.

    I'm not versed well enough in Linuxese to understand all the nuances of the various errors, so will await a more seasoned translation.

    Thanks!

    Paul

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    Installing software requires privileges, hence the need for 'sudo' and the reason for the error messages without it.

    Also run 'sudo apt upgrade' or 'sudo apt full-upgrade' after 'sudo apt update', the latter merely refreshes the list of available packages, it doesn't actually installs the updates even if available. Not doing this is the reason you now have an obsolete Firefox version.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Ubuntu Mate 16.04 Xenial Xerus

    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    All Unix-based systems are multi-user from the beginning. Anything which will modify the entire system will need to have elevated privileges.

    While users can install some software from source or script packages, the APT system is system-wide. Only a process running with elevated privileges can accomplish that. On Ubuntu systems, sudo is the most common method to achieve this. On a multi-user system, most users wouldn't have that right so they cannot harm the system, just their personal files.

    Because Unix permissions are implemented at the base "file" level, there isn't anyway around them ... cough ... unlike 1 other OS.

    APT is the entire package management system. There are different front-end interfaces into it. Most have similar capabilities, but a few have some extra capabilities.

    apt is a script front end for apt-get. It is intended to do the most common things and it will cleanup older kernels, which is desirable. apt search is very handy too. I use apt most of the time.

    apt-get is the historical tool and still used commonly. The main times I use apt-get anymore is because it supports package-name-globbing. It is nice to remove entire subsystems that aren't wanted using a wildcard.

    aptitude is a tool that will provide alternative dependency solutions. Most of the time, that isn't needed, but if you are trying to use a specific DBMS or MTA, the default dependency solution might tell APT to uninstall the DBMS you have/want and install something else. I've had this happen when using apt-get and it took down a project management server at work. aptitude was able to figure out the issue and correct it ... after about 30 minutes of downtime.

    Then there are the GUI tools like "Software Center" and "Synaptic". I haven't used SC ever and haven't used Synaptic in about 8+ yrs. Synaptic shows all the available packages, which can be confusing for new users who don't understand about libraries. Software Center hides libraries (I understand) and recent versions include snap packages.

    All of them read and write to the APT database. It is safe to use any of those APT front-ends based on your personal preference.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
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    19

    Re: 16.04 LTS - can't update

    Thanks, CelticWarrrior, for the advice to also run SUDO APT UPGRADE. Will do so later this evening.

    I do want to share this development. Today the infrequent "Update" notification came on in the upper-right corner (red triangle). I clicked it and started the process of downloading 1,672 new files. Installation began, and a Terminal window opened, showed a lot of script and commands being run, then closed. Then nothing happened. Waited about 30 mins, then logged out and restarted the machine. When Ubuntu opened it was still 16.04 LTS. I opened System Settings, and the "Install Updates" button was active, so I clicked it. The following screenshots are the messages I received. At the end of it all, no update to 18 or 19, still running 16.04 LTS, still no 'Update' icon in the System Settings listings.

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