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I have installed Mint LXDE 10.04 on my netbook, but would prefer the standard Ubuntu. Would it be easy (one or a few commands) to get the computer to the same state as it would have if I did a fresh install of Ubuntu, or should I just do the fresh install?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

It won't be easy. Even if they use the same package manager and mostly the same packages there are lots of differences between the two distros, so changing the repositories and doing a dist-upgrade will likely leave you with a broken system.

Do the fresh install.

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Linux Mint and Ubuntu use the APT .deb package manager and share repositories.

Theoretically it should be possible to move from Mint LXDE to "vanilla" (GNOME) Ubuntu. Installing GNOME Ubuntu requires that you install the ubuntu-desktop package, which should then download everything else required. Removing Mint and LXDE may be a little more difficult; you would have to know exactly which packages to remove. The installation of ubuntu-desktop may suggest the removal of some 'conflicting' packages, but may not suggest the removal of everything which should be removed. Mint provides several additional pieces of software which you would have to remove.

It may be easier in the long run to do a fresh install of Ubuntu. If you have partitioned your drive such that you have your /home folder on a separate partition, you could just install Ubuntu to your / partition and preserve everything in /home.

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