Upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04 Noble Numbat Desktop or Server

Upgrading your operating system is vital in maintaining software efficiency and security. Ubuntu, known for its stability and community support, offers a seamless upgrade process. Whether you’re a desktop user familiar with graphical interfaces or a server administrator comfortable with command-line operations, this guide facilitates an easy transition to the latest Ubuntu 24.04 LTS version.

Key Points to Consider Before Upgrading:

  • Backup Important Data: Always ensure your important files are backed up.
  • System Requirements: Verify your system meets the requirements for Ubuntu 24.04.
  • Internet Connection: A stable connection is essential for downloading updates.
  • Power Supply: Ensure your device is connected to a power source during the upgrade.
  • Update Current System: Make sure your current Ubuntu version is fully updated.

Let’s proceed with the upgrade. There are two main sections that cover the desktop method or utilizing the terminal for those who prefer it or on an Ubuntu server.

Update Ubuntu Before Upgrading to Ubuntu 24.04

Preparing Your System for Upgrade

Update your current system to initiate the upgrade process to Ubuntu 24.04. This fundamental step ensures your system aligns with the latest updates, which is critical for a trouble-free upgrade.

Updating Package Lists and Upgrading Packages

To update the package lists for upgrades, use the apt command:

sudo apt update

This command retrieves the latest list of updates from your configured repositories, a necessary step for your system to recognize all new software versions.

Then, to upgrade all installed packages to their latest available versions, execute:

sudo apt upgrade -y

Using the -y flag automatically confirms the installation of updates, facilitating a more efficient process. This step is crucial in ensuring your current software is fully updated, setting a stable base for the upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04.

Performing a Distribution Upgrade

As an optional but recommended action, run:

sudo apt dist-upgrade

The dist-upgrade command adeptly handles changes in new package versions and manages any arising conflicts. It offers a more sophisticated approach than the basic upgrade command, adept at managing complex package dependencies. This step is especially significant for major system upgrades, ensuring all packages are optimally prepared for Ubuntu 24.04 LTS.

Upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04 via Desktop GUI Method

Initiating the Upgrade Process

Start your upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04 by opening the terminal with CTRL+ALT+T. In the terminal, enter:

sudo update-manager

This command opens the Update Manager, which is essential for managing Ubuntu updates and upgrades.

Using the Development Release Option

If the Update Manager doesn’t present an upgrade option, compel it to search for the latest development release, including new LTS versions like Ubuntu 24.04, with:

sudo update-manager -d

The -d flag directs the Update Manager to look for development releases.

Ensuring Update Manager Core is Installed

Should the Update Manager not launch, confirm the presence of the update-manager-core package, or install it using:

sudo apt install update-manager-core -y

The -y flag automates confirmation, streamlining installation.

Upgrade Prompt

The Update Manager window will appear once you connect to a stable internet. Click on the ‘Upgrade…’ button to initiate the upgrade process.


If the upgrade prompt fails to appear, it might be due to outdated packages. Ensure your system is fully updated so the Upgrade Manager can detect Ubuntu 24.04 and begin the upgrade.

Upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04

Step 1: Reviewing Release Notes

The upgrade starts with the release notes. Note that Ubuntu 24.04, at this point, might still be in development. This is critical information, especially for those using Ubuntu in production or as a primary operating system.

Click ‘Upgrade’ to proceed.

Step 2: Confirming Upgrade Details and Proceed to Ubuntu 24.04

The next screen provides details of the upgrade, such as new installations and obsolete packages. Review this carefully to understand the forthcoming changes.

Click ‘Start the Upgrade’ to proceed.

This will take several minutes, depending on your system hardware.

Step 3: Removing Obsolete Packages

After the upgrade, the system will prompt you to remove outdated packages. Select ‘Remove’ for a cleaner upgrade unless there’s a need to retain them.

Step 4: Completing the Installation

Most users choose to remove obsolete packages after dealing with them. To conclude the upgrade, restart your system with ‘Restart Now’.

Step 5: Verifying the Upgrade

Once upgraded, open your system settings section, and you should see Ubuntu 24.04 Noble Numbat now in your system information:

Upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04 Server via CLI Commands

Upgrading the Distribution

After updating, proceed with the distribution upgrade. This step will replace the existing version with Ubuntu 24.04:

sudo do-release-upgrade

Or, alternatively, use the following command until Ubuntu 24.04 is officially released:

sudo do-release-upgrade -d

The -d flag is used here to upgrade to the development release of Ubuntu 24.04. This command prompts questions, guiding you through the upgrade process.

Proceed with Upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04 Server

Once you have downloaded the necessary files, you will be prompted to upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04 Server or for those doing this via desktop cli terminal.

Type “y” to proceed:

Removing Obsolete Packages

Similar to the first method of desktop upgrade, you will see a prompt in your command-line terminal to remove obsolete packages left over from Ubuntu 22.04:

This is optional and can be done later on; type “y” or “n” to proceed:

Restart Ubuntu

Once the upgrade process is complete, a system restart is necessary. Use the following command:

sudo reboot

This command will restart your server and implement all the changes.

Verifying the Upgrade

After the server reboots, verify that Ubuntu 24.04 is installed successfully:

lsb_release -a

This command displays the current version of the operating system, confirming the successful upgrade to Ubuntu 24.04.


In this guide, we’ve walked through the steps for upgrading to Ubuntu 24.04, covering both the desktop GUI method and the server CLI approach. Remember, updating your system ensures better security and access to the latest features. After the upgrade, take some time to familiarize yourself with the new environment and check that all your applications are functioning as expected.

Joshua James
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