How to Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04


Ubuntu 20.04 is the latest version of the popular Linux operating system. It offers a range of new features and improvements, making it an attractive upgrade for users of earlier versions. In this guide, we will show you how to upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 from an earlier version. We will cover the steps required to upgrade from Ubuntu 18.04, 19.10, and 19.04, as well as the steps required to upgrade from other Linux distributions. We will also discuss the potential risks associated with upgrading, and provide some tips for ensuring a successful upgrade.

How to Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04

1. Back Up Your Data

Before you upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04, it is important to back up your data. This will ensure that you don’t lose any important files or settings during the upgrade process. You can back up your data to an external hard drive, USB drive, or cloud storage service.

2. Download the Ubuntu 20.04 ISO

The next step is to download the Ubuntu 20.04 ISO file. You can download the ISO file from the official Ubuntu website. Once you have downloaded the ISO file, you can use a tool such as Rufus to create a bootable USB drive.

3. Boot From the USB Drive

Once you have created the bootable USB drive, you can boot from it. To do this, you will need to enter your computer’s BIOS or UEFI settings and change the boot order so that the USB drive is the first device to boot from.

4. Install Ubuntu 20.04

Once you have booted from the USB drive, you will be presented with the Ubuntu 20.04 installation screen. Follow the on-screen instructions to install Ubuntu 20.04 on your computer.

5. Enjoy Ubuntu 20.04

Once the installation is complete, you can enjoy the new features and improvements that come with Ubuntu 20.04. You can also use the Software Updater to keep your system up to date with the latest security patches and software updates.


Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa) is the newest LTS release that came out on April 23, 2020. If you already have Ubuntu 18.04 or 19.10 installed, you can easily upgrade to the latest version.

In this tutorial, learn how to upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 from 18.04 or 19.10 version.

Tutorial on how to upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 from 18.04 or 19.10 using command line or GUI


  • A system running Ubuntu 18.04 or Ubuntu 19.10
  • Access to a terminal window / command line (Ctrl+Alt+T, search > terminal)
  • A user account with sudo or root privileges

Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 via GUI

If you prefer updating your system using the graphical user interface, follow the steps outlined below. The instructions apply to both Ubuntu 18.04 and Ubuntu 19.10 users.

Note: Are you are upgrading from a system already in use, make sure to backup your data before you start.

Step 1: Update the System

Firstly, you need to start by updating the system and software running on your Ubuntu. You can easily switch to the newer version with the Debian upgrade process, but you need to ensure you have the latest packages.

1. Open the Search bar and type in Software Updater. Find the icon in the results and open the console.

Find software updater on Ubuntu, using GUI.

2. Upon launch, the program checks for new updates. Wait for it to finish.

Check for software updates.

3. The output tells you the size of the new updates. Click Install Now to update all the software packages.

Update software packages on Ubuntu.

4. Confirm the installation by providing your password and finish updating by restarting the system when asked.

Step 2: Upgrade to the Newest Ubuntu Version

1. After restarting, reopen the Search bar and find the Software and Updates package.

Find the Software and Updates icon on Ubuntu.

2. Navigate to the Updates tab and set the Notify me of the new Ubuntu version. The drop-down menu should be set on For long-term support versions.

Setting Ubuntu to inform when new stable releases are out.

3. Then, open the command box by pressing the keys Alt+F2. The console serves as a substitute for running quick commands without having to open a terminal window.

4. Once the command box opens, run the following command to prompt the system to check for new long-term support versions:

update-manager -c -d
Check for new long-term supported Ubuntu version.

5. The software updater will inform you that Ubuntu 20.04 is now available. Click Upgrade to upgrade your Ubuntu version to the new LTS release.

Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 via GUI.

6. Next, you need to authenticate. Type in your password to do so.

7. A new window with Release Notes for Ubuntu Focal Fossa opens. Continue by clicking Upgrade again.

Preparing to upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04.

8. Next, the output informs you about all the details of the upgrade. Make sure you have enough space on the system, close any open applications, and click Start Upgrade.

Confirm Ubuntu upgrade.

9. The installation wizard then asks you to confirm you want to remove obsolete packages. Click Remove to do so.

10. Finally, restart the system to complete the upgrade.

Restart Ubuntu to complete upgrade.

The new Ubuntu release will start up and you will see the attractive dark version of the default Yaru theme.

Ubuntu 20.04 desktop.

Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 via Command Line

You can upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 through the command line. The commands are the same for both Ubuntu 18.04 and Ubuntu 19.10.

Step 1: Update and Upgrade

It is crucial to start with a complete system upgrade. Run the following commands to ensure your repository and software packages are all up to date:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade -y
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade -y

Next, remove all unnecessary packages that may be taking up disk space on your system:

sudo apt-get autoremove

Step 2: Set Up Update Manager

Ubuntu allows you to easily upgrade to the newest LTS version using the Update Manager. If you do not have this package installed on the system, follow the steps below.

1. Run the command for installing Update Manager:

sudo apt-get install update-manager-core

2. Press y and Enter to confirm the installation.

3. Open its configuration file to check whether the Update Manager is set to download long-term supported versions:

sudo nano /etc/update-manager/release-upgrades
screenshot of Updating the manager configuration file

As in the example above, the line Prompt should have lts selected.

Step 3: Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04

1. With the Update Manager installed and set to search for LTS releases, you can use the following command to see the latest version available:

sudo do-release-upgrade -d

2. The output tells you that Ubuntu 20.04 is now available for download. Additionally, it notifies you how many packages are going to be downloaded, upgraded, the size of these packages, and the time it will take to upgrade. Press y to continue.

Confirm Ubuntu Update via Command Line

3. Next, the prompt asks you to confirm you agree with removing obsolete packages. Again, press y to continue.

Remove obsolete packages during the upgrading

4. Once the system upgrade completes, it will inform you that a restart is required. Press y to finish the update.

5. Ubuntu 20.04 will launch, and you should see its impressive new dark theme desktop, seen in the image below.

Ubuntu 20.04 desktop successfully installed and upgraded

Verify Ubuntu Version

You can check the Ubuntu version of your upgraded system, either through the command line or via GUI.

To verify your Ubuntu version, enter the command in a terminal window:

lsb_release -a

After the upgrade, the output should show you are now running Ubuntu 20.04.

verification ubuntu upgrade to 20.04 was successful and running

Alternatively, you can use the GUI to check your Ubuntu version by opening the Settings window and navigating to the About tab. There you will find the OS Name that includes the release number, as in the image below.

Checking the Ubuntu version using GUI


This article has shown you how to upgrade an existing Ubuntu 18.04 or 19.10 to the latest long-term supported version 20.04. You can choose between using the GUI or command line to set up Ubuntu 20.04.


How to Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04

Ubuntu 20.04 is the latest version of the popular Linux operating system. It offers a range of new features and improvements, making it an attractive upgrade for existing users. In this guide, we’ll show you how to upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 from an earlier version.

Before You Begin

Before you begin the upgrade process, there are a few things you should do to ensure a smooth transition:

  • Back up your data. Make sure you have a recent backup of your important files and data before you begin the upgrade process.
  • Check for compatibility. Make sure that all of your hardware and software is compatible with Ubuntu 20.04.
  • Check for updates. Make sure that your current version of Ubuntu is up to date before you begin the upgrade process.

Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04

Once you have completed the steps above, you are ready to begin the upgrade process. To upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Software & Updates application from the Activities overview.
  2. Select the Updates tab.
  3. Under the “Notify me of a new Ubuntu version” section, select For any new version.
  4. Click the Close button.
  5. Open the Software Updater application from the Activities overview.
  6. Click the Install Now button.
  7. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the upgrade process.


You have successfully upgraded to Ubuntu 20.04. You can now enjoy the new features and improvements that this version of Ubuntu has to offer. If you encounter any issues during the upgrade process, you can refer to the Ubuntu documentation for help.

Jaspreet Singh Ghuman

Jaspreet Singh Ghuman

Passionate Professional Blogger, Freelancer, WordPress Enthusiast, Digital Marketer, Web Developer, Server Operator, Networking Expert. Empowering online presence with diverse skills.

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