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How To Update To Ubuntu 18.04 On Windows 10

Windows 10 has received a fresh feature update. The Windows 10 April update has a lot of new features however it seems the Ubuntu app in the Microsoft Store didn’t get an upgrade. Microsoft has explicitly said that it is still working to bring official support for Ubuntu 18.04 on Windows 10. What this means is that if you install Ubuntu on Windows 10 after updating to Windows 10 1803, you will get Ubuntu 16.04. Officially, the next version isn’t supported yet however, there seems to be nothing stopping you from performing a manual upgrade.

Make sure you’re on the latest version of Windows 10 i.e., 1803 aka the April Update aka the Spring Creators Update. Install Ubuntu from the Microsoft Store and run it. Enter the following command to check what version you’re running and it should be version 16.04.

lsb_release -d

To update to Ubuntu 18.04 on Windows 10, enter the following command, and authenticate the change with your password.

sudo do-release-upgrade -d

The command will force Ubuntu to check if a new version is available, and when it’s detected, it will ask you if you want to proceed with the upgrade.

Accept the upgrade and it will download and install it. You will be asked to intervene twice during the upgrade process. The first time, Ubuntu will ask you if you want to install the latest version of the sshd_config file. You can keep the current version, or you can get the latest one.

Next, a little further during the upgrade process, Ubuntu will ask you if you want to remove obsolete packages. You can choose to remove them, or keep them. When the upgrade finishes, a restart will be required. If Ubuntu is unable to restart your system, go ahead and manually restart it.

Open Ubuntu and run the following command again to make sure the upgrade was successful.

lsb_release -d

The new version does run on Windows 10 however, because there is no official support for it just yet, you might run into problems that can only be resolved by running a supported version of Ubuntu. If that happens, i.e., you exhaust all possible solutions to a problem you experience after upgrading to Ubuntu 18.04, your only recourse is to downgrade to 16.04.

You can uninstall Ubuntu and then install it again from the Microsoft Store. Of course this will reset everything you’ve set up/configured on your current installation.

There’s no ETA on when Microsoft will officially support Ubuntu 18.04 on Windows 10 so if you think you can live with the bugs for a while, you ought to know that you might end up waiting longer than you actually can. There are rumors that the next major Windows 10 update that is expected to arrive in October of this year may support the new version of Ubuntu but that is just a rumor at present.


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