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I run 18.04 on my main server and I have a hard time to exactly understand what "LTS" means:

  • does "Long Time Support" mean that whatever software is installed on day one, at that "version", will be supported together with all the upgrades of this software?
  • or that whatever is installed on day one will stay at that "version" ?

When running an apt list --upgradable I see, among others

python3-distupgrade/bionic-updates,bionic-updates 1:18.04.24 all [upgradable from: 1:18.04.21]

This means that the version moves from 18.04.21 to 18.04.24, therefore it changes - at least for the most minor part.

What exactly (from software version perspective) changes in time with the LTS?

Note about "marked as duplicate": my question is not about the timing of the support (which is the essence of the other answer) but about the versions of the software which make an LTS.

As an example, python on my 18.04 servers is 3.6.5. The current stable version is 3.7. Will I get it? Or only updates of 3.6? Is there a rule which states how the evolving versions of a program will or will not be ported to an LTS?

  • @karel: not really a duplicate. I am aware that the exact version I want may not be available yet (or available via a PPA) - my concern is whether it will be available at all because of the rules around updating (or not) software in LTS (= the core of my question) and how this is decided (maybe because this is a security fix and then it goes in, or maybe because there is a functional bug, or because there is a new feature but it is backward-compatible, ...) – WoJ Aug 14 '18 at 13:08
  • I think the answer to my question is "SRU" (description found in wiki.ubuntu.com/StableReleaseUpdates) and the actual information is that there is no rule for whether a package will be updated, but it will probably not be. – WoJ Aug 14 '18 at 13:14
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    The top answer to the duplicate question suggested by @karel explains when and why package versions are frozen and what kind of a updates Canonical ships for them. The same rules apply for LTS releases with the exception of kernel and X.org packages which are back-ported from all future releases up to and including the following LTS release (but need to be installed manually). Thus I agree with his duplicate. – David Foerster Aug 14 '18 at 15:21
  • @DavidFoerster: I read this answer once again and the sentence which mentions the versions is "Updates for potential security problems and bugs (not new versions of software)". It applies to both LTS and non-LTS versions. Which would mean (to take the example of Python) that whatever is defined as "version" in python (the x in 2.x and 3.x) will only change between releases (LTS and non-LTS alike). Is this the correct interpretation? If so my understanding is that there is nothing special in LTS (in the context of the versions shipped with the release) = they do not change – WoJ Aug 14 '18 at 15:47
  • (cont'd) (again, depending on what "version" means for a specific software) – WoJ Aug 14 '18 at 15:47

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