Easily Upgrade Ubuntu to a Newer Version with This Single Command

zzupdate is an open source command line utility that makes the task of upgrading Ubuntu Desktop and Server to newer versions a tad bit easier by combining several update commands into one single command.

Upgrading an Ubuntu system to a newer release is not a herculean task. Either with the GUI or with a couple of commands, you can easily upgrade your system to the latest release.

On the other hand, zzupdate written by Gianluigi ‘Zane’ Zanettini handles clean, update, autoremove, version upgrade and composer self-update for your Ubuntu system with just a single command.

It cleans up the local cache, updates available package information, and then perform a distribution upgrade. In the next step, it updates the Composer and removes the unused packages.

The script must run as root user.

Installing zzupdate to upgrade Ubuntu to a newer version

Upgrade Ubuntu to a newer version with a single command

To install zzupdate, execute the below command in a Terminal.

curl -s https://raw.githubusercontent.com/TurboLabIt/zzupdate/master/setup.sh | sudo sh

And then copy the provided sample configuration file to zzupdate.conf and set your preferences.

sudo cp /usr/local/turbolab.it/zzupdate/zzupdate.default.conf /etc/turbolab.it/zzupdate.conf

Once you have everything, just use the following command and it will start upgrading your Ubuntu system to a newer version (if there is any).

sudo zzupdate

Note that zzupdate upgrades the system to the next available version in case of a normal release. However, when you are running Ubuntu 16.04 LTS, it tries to search for the next long-term support version only and not the latest version available.

If you want to move out of the LTS release and upgrade to the latest release, you will have change some options.

For Ubuntu desktop, open Software & Updates and under Updates tab and change Notify me of a new Ubuntu version to “For any new version“.

Software Updater in Ubuntu

For Ubuntu server, edit the release-upgrades file.

vi /etc/update-manager/release-upgrades


Configuring zzupdate [optional]

zzupdate options to configure


If this value is 1, a system restart is performed after an upgrade.


This sets up the reboot timeout to 900 seconds as some hardware takes much longer to reboot than others.


Executes version progression if an upgrade is available.


Version progression occurs automatically.


Value ‘1’ will automatically upgrade the composer.


This features switches the Ubuntu Version updated to normal i.e. if you have an LTS release running, zzupdate won’t upgrade it to Ubuntu 17.10 if its set to 0. It will search for an LTS version only. In contrast, value 1 searches for the latest release whether you are running an LTS or a normal release.

Once done, all you have to do is run in console to run a complete update of your Ubuntu system

sudo zzupdate

Final Words

Though the upgrade process for Ubuntu is in itself an easy one, zzupdate reduces it to mere one command. No coding knowledge is necessary and the process is complete config file driven. I personally found itself a good tool to update several Ubuntu systems without the need of taking care of different things separately.

Are you willing to give it a try?

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Will this also work with any Ubuntu derivatives,i.e., Mint, Lubuntu, etc.?

Hi, will this work with Linux Mint?

I advise sticking with Linux Mint's updater.

A. Sure, let's all pipe text off of the internet into a root shell! Great practice! No way it can ever be abused to take over your computer and install malware!

B. You keep saying "composer" as if it's something people know about. You probably mean the PHP dependency manager? It's hardly a concern for most users, but at the minimum you should have said "for PHP developers" or something.

What's wrong with the already known command for upgrading?

sudo do-release-upgrade -d

Nothing wrong with that. But this script is a tad bit more useful when you have to update a number of systems through the command line.

Hi. Will this work with Zorin 9? I would like to upgrade to Zorin 11.

Thanks, Stephen

I cannot say that for certain. But since Zorin is based on Ubuntu and this tool uses standard update command, it seems like yes.

Hi Abhishek

Looks to be a great idea but can you confirm if it leaves disabled entries behind ? I went for a gui update this time and it left a lot of these entries in 'Software & Update' sources ...

disabled on upgrade to artful

Ubuntu 17.04 'Zesty Zapus' (Source Code)

I'm hoping "It cleans up the local cache, updates available package information ..... updates the Composer and removes the unused packages" means just that.