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How is an LTS to LTS upgrade different than a Standard Release to Standard Release upgrade? Are fresh installs usually preferred to guarantee a stable environment?

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Can you edit your answer and delete all the stuff on the chat-ban. I mean it really is not relevant to your otherwise valid question. – don.joey Apr 18 '14 at 10:14
up vote 10 down vote accepted

Any upgrade is a risk. Things can break in between. Power failure can be an issue. So purely based logics going from LTS to LTS is less risky than going LTS->NON-LTS->NON-LTS->NON-LTS->LTS.

The whole idea of using an LTS is to not upgrade in between LTSs. You get a lot of stability in exchange for not getting the latest software out-of-the-box.

And yes; if possible I would always go for a reinstall. A reinstall has a side-effect: it will remove all packages you installed and that you never used.

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Because short term supports contain many broken packages and removing or adding them may cause serious complication in package dependencies.

A user like me who likes to try things and always install packages from less reliable sources tend to get a lot lot of broken packages or even break good packages over time.

So it is always recommended to upgrade between LTSs

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