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I've been running an Ubuntu desktop for a couple of years. I regularly update the security and recommended updates via Upgrade Manager. However it seems I didn't have Upgrade Manager set up to tell me of Ubuntu updates. Having realised this post the April-2013 loss of support for 10.04, and changed the settings, it now offers me an upgrade to 10.10. However when clicking on it and following the upgrade instructions, I consistently get the following error message:

"Failed to fetch. Fetching the upgrade failed. There may be a network problem."

Now I don't necessarily want 10.10, and would prefer to skip to the latest one with the longest duration of support available, which appears to be 12.04 LTS.

Bearing in mind I have very few IT skills (Ubuntu was set up for me by an IT expert to temporarily replace a very slow running Windows Vista, but I loved it so stuck with it ever since):

  1. Can someone tell me how I can upgrade directly to 12.04 LTS?
  2. Is there any danger of losing existing files etc that I should be aware of in doing so?
  3. And - less importantly, but if anyone has time to explain - what exactly is the difference between supported and unsupported (ie. what would happen longer term if I just carried on using 10.04)?

Many thanks,

Tim.

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marked as duplicate by fossfreedom Apr 26 '13 at 12:03

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

    
10.10 is not supported any more so I would recommend you backup your personal data then do a fresh install of the version you want. However if you specifically want to upgrade take a look at this question: How to install software or upgrade from old unsupported release? –  Warren Hill Apr 25 '13 at 9:14
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1 Answer 1

  1. https://help.ubuntu.com/community/PreciseUpgrades
  2. No. Always have a backup of course, but it should upgrade without problems.
  3. Support means you get security and other updates for your system. LTS (Long Term Supported) is supported for a longer period.

Recently Canonical reduced the support period for non-LTS to 9 months. But don't be afraid, it's perfectly stable, and you have plenty of time to roll with the next release when it comes out. And to be honest, your PC won't stop if you slip out of the support period. You can just catch up whenever you want.

Which one to use? It all depends on you. LTS is a bit "older", but it provides a long-term, stable environment for enterprise, and servers. The non-LTS version is stable too, but you may not want the upgrade hassle on a whole bunch of company servers every half a year.

For desktop, I go for the latest release.
For our company servers, I choose the LTS versions.
And for my own servers, I just run the latest release too.

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Rule of thumb was to wait a few days when a new version comes out. So Canonical can smooth the rough edges, can fix the most annoying bugs. But they introduced the "stable daily images" during 13.04's development, and it's been rock-solid ever since. –  Shiki Apr 25 '13 at 8:39
    
Many thanks Shiki, that worked wonderfully. (The step I was missing in Update Manager was to set to 'LTS only', after which 12.04 duly appeared. It's up and running now, and all looking very cool and very different to 10.04! Is there anything w –  Tim Apr 26 '13 at 11:35
    
Many thanks Shiki, that worked wonderfully. (The step I was missing in Update Manager was to set to 'LTS only', after which 12.04 duly appeared). It's up and running now, and all looking very cool and very different to 10.04! Is there anything worth knowing about what I can do in the new system that I couldn't with 10.04? (Again, at a basic user level!) –  Tim Apr 26 '13 at 11:42
    
@Tim: You should read the release notes for each release that "happened" before the old and the new release. ubuntu.com/getubuntu/releasenotes | If you want a graphical list, just Google for "12.04 what's new", or "12.04 features", and so on. Many news site compiled great articles for each release. :) –  Shiki Apr 26 '13 at 16:07
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