Linux Mint’s development team has been working on a new Upgrade tool for some time now. The new tool will make upgrades between major versions of the Linux distributions a lot easier for many of its users.
New major versions of Linux Mint are released every two years. Each major version gets three point releases, and updates to one of the point releases are simple, as they don’t require use of the command line.
Upgrades to new major version releases of Linux Mint are complex, as they take more time to perform and require use of the command line. The new Linux Mint Upgrade tool changes the major version upgrade process significantly.
One of the core improvements of the new Upgrade tool is that it is fully graphical and that the command line does not need to be used. Another improvement is the built-in handing of issues detected by the upgrade checker. Many issues can be resolved with just a click on the “fix” button in the interface according to Linux Mint’s development team.
There is more though:
- The new Upgrade tool is fully localized.
- The tool runs more checks to make sure all prerequisites are matched; this includes verifying that there is enough free space or that the device is connected to a power supply.
- Some options are configurable. The team notes that most should not be skipped, but the option to do so is provided.
- The user’s selection of distribution mirrors is preserved and used, provided that the mirrors are “compatible, responsive and up to date”.
- Custom repositories and PPAs do not need to be removed. Checks are performed, however, to find out if these support the new version.
- Orphaned packages can be kept as well.
The new Upgrade tool improves the major version upgrade process for many users, especially for users who switched to Linux Mint only recently. The development team plans to release the Upgrade tool for the upgrade from LMDE 4 to LMDE 5 first, and then later on for upgrading from Linux Mint 20.3 to Linux Mint 21.0.
The Upgrade tool is available as an alpha version currently. A short beta release cycle is planned before the final release of the new application.
You can check out the latest blog post on the official Linux Mint blog for additional details.
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