The Linux Mint team has announced the opening up of upgrades from Linux Mint 20.3 to Linux Mint 21. It’s the first time that Linux Mint users will be able to jump between major versions using a graphical interface. Despite the upgrade process being made simpler, users are still advised to take their time with it and prepare system snapshots.
While the upgrade is done with a graphical tool, the Linux Mint team, annoyingly, is still providing command line instructions to install the graphical upgrade tool. While it may be available through the Software Manager, the official instructions ask you to run the following commands:
- apt update
- apt install mintupgrade
- sudo mintupgrade
After you have type each of these commands in separately and allowed them to execute, you should have the upgrade tool open and ready to go. The upgrade could take several hours depending on your computer and internet speed, but when it’s done you should use the following commands to remove the tool:
- apt remove mintupgrade
- sudo reboot
Before performing any of the instructions above, read over the official documentation and make a backup with Timeshift or your preferred backup tool. If anything goes wrong during the upgrade, you’ll be able to restore from the backup.
While it’s very nice to see the Linux Mint team making major upgrades easy to do, it’d be better if the official documentation gave users instructions that didn’t require using the command line. Hopefully, the tool is available through the software manager for those who are uncomfortable using the command line.
For those who don’t mind reinstalling software, making a backup of your files and performing a clean installation is also an option. Using this method is less likely to leave you with legacy items from the previous version.