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I have laptop installed with 12.04 and one day when I powered it up, it showed the option of booting from ubuntu and advanced etc. On selecting boot from ubuntu, it showed the blank screen. i tried restarting re-seating the RAM/HDD but no joy. then re-installed 12.04 now i want to upgrade to 13.04 however I came to know that i have to get 12.10 first. Do I need to download 12.10 and only then can I upgrade?

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Yes, you'll need to upgrade to 12.10, then to 13.04. You don't need to specifically download the ISO for 12.10 though, you can upgrade over the network. What you will do is open a terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and type update-manager -d. Here are the specific steps:

You can easily upgrade over the network with the following procedure.

  1. Run the update-manager -d application from the Unity Dash or a command line

  2. In Update Manager, click the Settings... button, and enter your password to start the Software Sources application.

  3. Select the sub menu Updates from the Software Sources application.

  4. Confirm the "Notify me of a new Ubuntu version:" option is set to "For any new version", and change it if otherwise. Close the Software Sources application and return to Update Manager. In Update Manager, click the Check button to check for new updates.

  5. If there are any updates to install, use the Install Updates button to install them, and press Check again after that is complete.

  6. A message will appear informing you of the availability of the new release. Click Upgrade.

  7. Follow the on-screen instructions.

Source: Upgrade from 12.04 LTS to 12.10

Then, you'll follow almost the same steps when you are on 12.10. Ubuntu Desktops 12.10 to 13.04.

Alternatively, since you've just re-installed 12.04, why don't you just do a fresh 13.04 install? It will be less of a hassle, and you'll have a more stable distribution rather than upgrading from one to the other.

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