How to Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04 (Command Line)

How to Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04 (Command Line). In this post, we will explain new features of Ubuntu 20.04 then move onto the Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04 upgrade process.

Before starting the upgrade process, please make sure to back up your data. I would recommended to copy your personal files safely to a backup location. So you can restore them if there are any problems or complications with upgrade process. Also keep in mind that the upgrade process can take some time. You should not interrupt or cancel the process, as it may leave the system in an unstable state.

Let’s start with How to Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04 (Command Line).

New Features In Ubuntu 20.04

Are you eagerly waiting for the launch of Ubuntu 20.04? Then, let us reveal that codenamed Focal Fossa, Ubuntu 20.04, is now available and comes with some of the following exciting features you need to look for.

Default Theme Variants And Aubergine Touch

Canonical Team is experimenting with the themes again. While in Ubuntu 19.10, they have introduced the default Yaru version, which provides the dark theme. But they have moved a little further in this version and launched three variants of the default Yaru theme, which are dark, light and standard. Moreover, they have embedded this option into its Settings. You do not have to install GNOME Tweaks to switch between these default themes.

This version has also emphasized aubergine (as a second accent color) and created a slightly different look.

Improvisation Of GNOME 3.36, Visuals, and Other Performance

With this version comes the latest GNOME 3.36 release. It means you can now acquire the benefits of all the new features of 3.36 in Ubuntu 20.04. For example, a revamped locked screen. Another thing that has changed in this version is the need to scroll down to the lock screen. You can move to the login screen with just a single click.

‘Do Not Disturb’ Button

Often, we get frustrated by several desktop notifications. Fortunately, the launch of Ubuntu 20.04 came up with the ‘Do Not Disturb’ option that toggles the desktop notification.

Fractional Scaling

Finally, fractional scaling is launched in Ubuntu 20.04. Whenever you find an icon too small at 100 % or too large at 200 %, you can use fractional scaling and set the number as 125, 150, 175, and 200.

Mitigation Of Dock

Some people do not like the launcher or the dock with application shortcuts, which are usually situated on the left side of the screen. Although you can change its location or hide it when an application window is approached. However, it can be done for quite some time.

Now you can disable it thoroughly using a new application called Extensions. Other than disabling docks, it also helps in managing extensions.

Snaps Before Apts

Canonical keeps on upgrading its universal packaging format snap. In Ubuntu 20.04, it has grown even further. If you try to run a program that is not installed, you can use the apt command to install it.

Linux Kernel 5.4

This feature provides native ExFAT support and all the performance improvements and new hardware support that comes with it.

Faster Install And Boot

The latest compression algorithms have reduced the time involved in installing this version. It also boosts fast as compared to 18.04.

Enhanced ZFS Support

Well Ubuntu has become the first mainstream Linux distribution to launch ZFS as roots. Now, it has come up with a more enhanced support system.

No Amazon App And Python 2

Ubuntu has had an Amazon app installed automatically for over eight years. However, it has now disappeared from this version. Moreover, since the release of Python 2 in 2000, it has ultimately reached the end of its life. This version of Ubuntu does not support Python any longer. Therefore, you will have to content to Python 3.

Backportion of WireGuard VPN

Although Ubuntu 20.04 is not using Kernel 5.6 anytime sooner, it is backporting WireGuard in Kernel 5.4. It is the latest trend in the VPN industry and can boost the cloud scenario of this version.

Elimination Of 32 Bit Systems

For a few years now, users are not getting ISO for their 32 bit computers from Ubuntu. However, it has given the privilege to the existing users to upgrade their system to Ubuntu 18.04.

This has been eliminated from this version completely. If users try to run an upgrade, an error will occur.

Some Other Improvements:

  • It provides you with NVIDIA drivers on the ISO itself.
  • You do not require more resources for GNOME 3.36. Also, it is sleek and light to use.
  • Several software are upgraded to the latest version.
  • It has also improved the Thunderbolt support.

Now it is time to learn How to Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04 (Command Line).

How to Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04 (Command Line)


To upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 you need:

  • A stable and fast internet connection.
  • A root user or a user with a sudo privileges.

Update and Upgrade All Packages

First, verify your current operating system version using the following command:

					lsb_release -a

You should see the following output:

					No LSB modules are available.
Distributor ID:	Ubuntu
Description:	Ubuntu 18.04.4 LTS
Release:	18.04
Codename:	bionic

Next, update the APT repository cache by running the following command:

					apt update -y

Next, it is recommended to upgrade all the existing packages to their latest versions before attempting to upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. You can upgrade all the packages by running the following command:

					apt full-upgrade -y

Once all the packages are upgraded, install the Upgrade Manager Core package with the following command:

					apt install update-manager-core -y

It is also recommended to remove all unwanted packages and package cache fro your system to free up the disk space. You can remove them by running the following command:

					apt-get --purge autoremove
apt-get clean

Finally, restart your system to apply the changes:


Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04

First, verify whether the Ubuntu 20.04 version is available or not by running the following command:


You should see the following output:

					Checking for a new Ubuntu release
There is no development version of an LTS available.
To upgrade to the latest non-LTS develoment release
set Prompt=normal in /etc/update-manager/release-upgrades.

Next, run the above command again with the -d option to start the upgrade process forcefully:

					do-release-upgrade -d

You will be asked to start the SSH daemon on port 1022 during the upgrade process. It will help you if you are performing the upgrade process remotely via SSH:

					Reading cache

Checking package manager

Continue running under SSH?

This session appears to be running under ssh. It is not recommended
to perform an upgrade over ssh currently because in case of failure it
is harder to recover.

If you continue, an additional ssh daemon will be started at port
Do you want to continue?

Continue [yN] y


Type y and press the Enter key to start the process. Once your system upgrade process is completed successfully, you will be asked to reboot your system as shown below:

					System upgrade is complete.

Restart required

To finish the upgrade, a restart is required.
If you select 'y' the system will be restarted.

Continue [yN] y


Type y and press the Enter key to reboot the system.

Next, log into your system again and verify the new Ubuntu version by running the following command:

					cat /etc/lsb-release

You should see the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS in the following output:



Thank you for reading How to Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04 (Command Line). We shall conclude. 

How to Upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.04 (Command Line) Conclusion

In this post, we explained how to upgrade Ubuntu 18.04 to Ubuntu 20.04 via command line. You can now explore the new Ubuntu version with its improved features. You can also test your apps and code that is compatible with the Ubuntu Linux 20.04 LTS server.

Please have a look at more Ubuntu content here

Avatar for Hitesh Jethva
Hitesh Jethva

I am a fan of open source technology and have more than 10 years of experience working with Linux and Open Source technologies. I am one of the Linux technical writers for Cloud Infrastructure Services.

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