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Why Does Ubuntu Still Show Available Updates After Running Upgrade?

Ubuntu 11

If you are a regular Ubuntu user, you might have encountered a situation where the system still shows available updates even after you have run an upgrade. This can be quite confusing and frustrating. In this article, we will delve into the reasons behind this issue and provide solutions on how to resolve it.

Quick Answer

After running an upgrade on Ubuntu, the system may still show available updates due to packages that require the removal of other packages. To resolve this issue, you can use the apt command to upgrade all packages, run a full upgrade with sudo apt full-upgrade or sudo apt-get dist-upgrade, or manually update the update-notifier file.

Understanding the Issue

Typically, after running the apt-get update and apt-get upgrade commands, your Ubuntu system should be up-to-date. However, you might still see a message indicating that there are packages that can be updated, including security updates. This happens because the regular upgrade command may not upgrade all packages, especially those that require the removal of other packages.

Solutions to the Issue

1. Using the apt Command

The apt command is a newer and more advanced package management tool compared to apt-get. It is designed to handle package management situations more intelligently. You can use the apt command to upgrade your system by running sudo apt upgrade.

Here, sudo is a command that allows you to run programs with the security privileges of another user (by default, the superuser). apt is the package handling utility, and upgrade is the operation that apt should perform. This command will upgrade all upgradable packages on your system.

2. Running a Full Upgrade

Another solution is to run a full upgrade. This can be done by running sudo apt full-upgrade or sudo apt-get dist-upgrade. A full upgrade is more comprehensive and will include packages that were not upgraded during a regular upgrade.

The dist-upgrade command intelligently handles changing dependencies with new versions of packages. It will attempt to upgrade the most important packages at the expense of less important ones if necessary.

3. Manually Updating the Update-Notifier File

The update-notifier file /var/lib/update-notifier/updates-available might not refresh after the last update, causing the system to still show available updates. You can manually update it by running the following commands:

sudo su
/usr/lib/update-notifier/apt-check --human-readable >/var/lib/update-notifier/updates-available
exit

In the above commands, sudo su is used to acquire the necessary permissions because the file has restricted permissions. /usr/lib/update-notifier/apt-check --human-readable will check for available updates and display them in a human-readable format. The >/var/lib/update-notifier/updates-available part will redirect the output to the updates-available file.

Conclusion

It can be frustrating to see available updates on your Ubuntu system even after running an upgrade. However, by using the apt command, running a full upgrade, or manually updating the update-notifier file, you can resolve this issue. If none of these solutions work, it is recommended to reach out to the Ubuntu community or consult the official Ubuntu documentation for further assistance.

Why does Ubuntu still show available updates after running an upgrade?

This can happen because the regular upgrade command may not upgrade all packages, especially those that require the removal of other packages.

What is the difference between `apt` and `apt-get`?

apt is a newer and more advanced package management tool compared to apt-get. It is designed to handle package management situations more intelligently.

What does the `sudo` command do?

The sudo command allows you to run programs with the security privileges of another user, typically the superuser. It is used to perform administrative tasks.

What is a full upgrade?

A full upgrade, performed with sudo apt full-upgrade or sudo apt-get dist-upgrade, is a more comprehensive upgrade that includes packages that were not upgraded during a regular upgrade. It intelligently handles changing dependencies with new versions of packages.

How do I manually update the update-notifier file?

You can manually update the update-notifier file by running the provided commands, which will check for available updates and update the file accordingly. Make sure to use sudo to acquire the necessary permissions.

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