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Yesterday I did a system upgrade by running sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y dist-upgrade on my laptop, a Lenovo G50-80 which only runs ubuntu 16.04 as my operating system of choice.

Everything from thereon went crazy, in a sense that my internal microphone could no longer work and the problem is that I discovered that while being interviewed using the zoom application as it so happened that I could hear my interviewer but they could not hear me(which was gut-wrenching, to say the least).

I tried all solutions suggested here and many other solutions from other blogs and none of them worked for me.

This morning I turn my machine and I cannot seem to access my system settings and so my frustrations continue.

Anyway below is a screenshot of how I partitioned my hard drive enter image description here

and I would like to know if I can reinstall my os(which will hopefully fix the microphone issue among others) on /dev/sda1 without affecting the data on /dev/sda4 and /dev/sda5 or do I have to backup all the data on these drives before doing that.

Thank you.

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    I would boot a 'live' (Ubuntu install media) and confirm your hardware all works as you believe it should. If this is good, you can re-install Ubuntu using 'something-else' and not-format your partitions, which will take note of your software, erase system directories, install the system, add back your additional software without touching data (as long as you don't format) - but you should backup first anyway. – guiverc Jun 14 '19 at 10:04
  • Also note: if your problem is a global setting, or a system-file problem a re-install (without cleaning your $HOME or user directory) should fix the issue. If however your problem is a setting in your own configs (ie. something saved in your home user directory such in ~/.config/), my prior comment's re-install suggestion without format may not fix the issue as your user configuration files (with problems) will likely still exist on your newly installed system. – guiverc Jun 14 '19 at 10:20
  • Running a dist-upgrade without reviewing the proposed changes (which might be extensive) is unwise. The dist-upgrade output and prompts are there to protect you from precisely this kind of situation. – user535733 Jun 14 '19 at 11:51
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Yes, you should be able to do it since you have a seperate /home partition. This tutorial should be of help. As always make sure you backup your important data things can go wrong. Back up to the cloud or external media. Good Luck.

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