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I have a virtual private server that runs the out-of-date Ubuntu 10.10. I'd like to upgrade to 12.04 LTS.

Currently apt doesn't work on this box, and the command do-release-upgrade is not found.

There is nothing on this VPS that I need to save, I'm OK with wiping it clean and installing 12.04, but I don't know how to do that when my only access is to a terminal remotely.

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marked as duplicate by Seth, Eliah Kagan, Braiam, Amith KK, mikewhatever Sep 7 '13 at 12:02

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.

What does not work with apt-get? What error do you get? I think it is possible to upgrade from LTS to LTS. – Salem Sep 6 '13 at 12:44
I'm not upgrading from LTS to LTS, but from 10.10 to 12.04. – Eric Wilson Sep 6 '13 at 13:32
I don't think that this is a dup of the linked question. As I specified, the do-release-upgrade command is not found. – Eric Wilson Sep 7 '13 at 1:18
And the answer says how to install it... – Braiam Sep 7 '13 at 5:02
@Braiam Good point. But with apt broken, and with this being a remote server, it is far from obvious to me how I would install do-release-upgrade. – Eric Wilson Sep 7 '13 at 15:23

I'm not sure how would one go about wiping and reinstalling Ubuntu remotely, but you could try the following to upgrade remotely, without apt and do-release-upgrade.

  1. Download the "Alternate CD" for 12.04.3 LTS server edition using:

    For 64-bit:


    For 32-bit:

  2. Mount it to /media/cdrom using:

    sudo mount -o loop ubuntu-12.04.3-alternate-amd64.iso /media/cdrom
  3. Run the following command to start the upgrade:

    sh /media/cdrom/cdromupgrade

    Or, if you're not root:

    gksu "sh '/media/cdrom/cdromupgrade'"

Note 1: I don't know if it's possible to directly upgrade from 10.10 to 12.04. I think you'll need to go through the releases in between, one by one.

Note 2: I haven't tried the above steps before, so I'm not sure if it will work. But according to this: PreciseUpgrade, it should. The steps there indicate to mount the .iso file to "the exact name of the CD", but I'm not sure what the exact name of the CD is on 10.10.

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gksu in a cli environment? Nice! BTW, you should add that answer to the main question ;). – Braiam Sep 7 '13 at 12:57
I haven't tried this, so not accepting. Found a way to fix apt (pointing to old-releases) which is solving my problem for now. – Eric Wilson Sep 7 '13 at 15:35

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