Kubuntu - Installing Updates

I have at least roughly a year of experience using Kubuntu, but I never understood how to properly update Linux. I prefer to check the Security and Update options found in the Software Sources utility found in Discover. What I don’t understand is how to know if there are updates to avoid or not. Would only installing Security updates be safe? What is the safest way to update
Kubuntu and keep a stable and reliable installation in the long run so I don’t brick the system?
Note that I do use the Discover GUI to update, so I won’t be using the terminal.

Kubuntu 21.10
KDE Plasma 5.22.5

You could read about each and every update to see if any issues have been reported. This will become very tedious very quickly due to the frequency of updates.

My suggestion? Backup, backup, backup !!! Also, test your backup and restore process so that you are very comfortable with it.

For a very long time, I only backed up my /home and in the event of any issue, I would just reinstall from the appropriate ISO. This is a quick and dirty process. But, as I began to customize more of my linux install, my backup process had to include more than just /home.

Today, I run Garuda, which uses the BTRFS file system. Their update process (Arch-based) runs a snapshot during every update and if something goes wrong with an update, I can boot to a previous snapshot from the grub boot menu. That is about as simple as I have ever seen.

I don’t have any experience with the latest versions from Ubuntu, but I could suggest you look to see if Canonical hasn’t incorporated this same type of functionality.


I would also add that Ubuntu and its flavors are relatively stable, as in bug free after updates, especially the LTS releases. So I would recommend to take all updates specially if you are more of a beginner. I see no point in skipping the security updates.
Kubuntu in your case will anyway only give you security updates and patches, there is really nothing to skip and it it is not meant to be skipped.

You can configure the update manager that it does all that automatically or if you want to take a look, tell the update manager only to notify you about the new updates and then you can see what gets updated. Have a look at the options.

The most important thing is that you do them and the GUI already exists and by default it is already configured properly.

Though if you want to learn a little bit more or see more details (output) there is of course the use of the terminal.
You do a sudo apt update and it will show you all the updates and then you apply them by doing sudo apt dist-upgrade. That is all.


Well, that’s good advice. I’m glad to hear that I’ve been updating properly all of this time. I wasn’t sure if there was something I was missing. Where could I find resources for researching updates
on Linux?

That is going to be distro specific, so I should be somewhere on Ubuntu’s site.

For example for Ubuntu:

That would apply to you.

For Linux, as in Linux kernel, though it depends on which kernel your distro uses:

On the above I made a web search. There are more sites that track kernel vulnerabilities.
But your distribution is responsible for kernel patches. You are not compiling your own kernel.

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I’ve found this to be useful, thank you.

@vinylninja said it great about the stability of updates for the latest Ubuntu flavours. The Flavours are usually quite solid and just installing all updates should be totally fine. KDE Discover can now update Flatpaks as well so you get those as an option there too. :smiley:

To be clear, “Flavour” is the specific term for official derivatives of Ubuntu. Linux Mint and elementaryOS are both derivatives but they are not Flavours. This Flavour status indicates that they move at the same pace as Ubuntu and are officially recognized as sanctioned versions.

If that doesn’t explain it well, I am making a video about this to put on my youtube channel because yea its a bit messy but in the meantime, this page lists all the official Flavours and Kubuntu is one of them. = Ubuntu flavours | Ubuntu

I am comfortable telling people using official flavours of Ubuntu that their updates should be totally fine to just run default updates.