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My machine is 32-bit.

My understanding is that today (August 2019) none of the supported versions of Ubuntu are 32-bit.

The history is:

Over the past few years I experienced increasing problems with the v16.04 that I had been running on my machine, including freezing up. So recently I replaced v16.04 with v16.10 from a bootable disc that I purchased.

However now with the freshly installed v16.10 I'm finding (just as with v16.04 before it) that I need to install the driver for the Broadcom network controller in my (Lenovo) machine.

The instructions I'm following to do that driver installation require me first of all to run sudo apt update. However that command does not work, apparently because no v16.xx is supported now.

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    I've done in recent days loads of testing on x86 (32-bit) 18.04.3 flavors that I'm expecting to be released in a few hours. Myself I'd rather run a flavor on x86 due to it's lighter desktop, but it's a personal preference as to whether or not flavors are for you, or not. Ubuntu 16.10 is EOL & I'd not suggest it (just like i'd not suggest either of the two 18.10 releases that were also available in x86/32bit as it's also EOL). Why not use a 18.04 LTS flavor? Also Ubuntu 16.04 LTS is still supported; the flavors for 16.04 only are EOL (with exception of kylin) – guiverc Aug 8 '19 at 9:59
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    fyi: LTS means long-term-support, and Ubuntu 16.04 LTS was a long-term-support release meaning it came with 5 years of supported life (which could be extended with Ubuntu Advantage for fee). Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (2016-April) release and Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (2018-April) release are both LTS with 5 years of support; flavors of LTS releases only come with 3 years unless specified otherwise on release. Ubuntu 16.10 you mention was not a LTS thus only had 9 months of life with it release-upgrading to 17.04, (2017-April), then to 17.10 (2017-October) then to 18.04 LTS – guiverc Aug 8 '19 at 10:09
  • Thank you. Your comments add greatly to my understanding of how Ubuntu is released and supported. I had assumed (wrongly, apparently) that v16.10 was just an intermediate step upwards in the support/maintenance/improvement of v16.04. Now I'm a bit straighter on that topic, are you suggesting that I can install and happily run v18.04 on my 32-bit machine? – Hotspur Aug 8 '19 at 10:25
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    Ubuntu 16.04 LTS had two release-upgrade paths; the default path was to the next LTS release (ie. Ubuntu 18.04 LTS; with LTS releases coming out every even year in April), or via each release (thus 16.10, 17.04, 17.10 then finally to 18.04 LTS where the decision path could be chosen again). The every-release path is for those that want the latest software always, and don't mind release-upgrading every 6-9 months (most users find this a hassle...) – guiverc Aug 8 '19 at 10:26
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    ubuntu.com/download/flavours to download flavors of Ubuntu, most (if not all) supported x86 or 32bit for 18.04 LTS though that was the last release for x86 for all but Xubuntu & Lubuntu (which continued with x86 until December-2018, so whilst 19.04 still receives updates for x86, 18.04 LTS will end up being supported longer!) – guiverc Aug 8 '19 at 10:38
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Myself I'd rather run a flavor on x86 (32bit) due to it's lighter desktop, but it's a personal preference as to whether or not flavors are for you, or not. I've also done loads of testing on x86 ISOs for 18.04.3 flavors that should be released in only a few hours, so no x86/32bit is not EOL yet.

Ubuntu 16.10 is EOL & I'd not suggest it (just like i'd not suggest either of the two 18.10 releases that were also available in x86/32bit as it's also EOL). Why not use a 18.04 LTS flavor? Also Ubuntu 16.04 LTS is still supported; the flavors for 16.04 only are EOL (with exception of kylin)

LTS means long-term-support, and Ubuntu 16.04 LTS was a long-term-support release meaning it came with 5 years of supported life (which could be extended with Ubuntu Advantage for fee). Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (2016-April) release and Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (2018-April) release are both LTS with 5 years of support; flavors of LTS releases only come with 3 years unless specified otherwise on release.

Ubuntu 16.10 you mention was not a LTS thus only had 9 months of life with it release-upgrading to 17.04, (2017-April), then to 17.10 (2017-October) then to 18.04 LTS. Ubuntu 16.04 LTS had two release-upgrade paths; the default path was to the next LTS release (ie. Ubuntu 18.04 LTS; with LTS releases coming out every even year in April), or via each release (thus 16.10, 17.04, 17.10 then finally to 18.04 LTS where the decision path could be chosen again). The every-release path is for those that want the latest software always, and don't mind release-upgrading every 6-9 months (most users find this a hassle and stick to LTS releases)

https://www.ubuntu.com/download/flavours is the site I'd suggest to download flavors of Ubuntu, most (if not all) supported x86 or 32bit for 18.04 LTS though that was the last release for x86 for all but Xubuntu & Lubuntu (which continued with x86 until December-2018, so whilst 19.04 still receives updates for x86, 18.04 LTS will likely end up being supported longer!).

Part of the reason I use the aforementioned site is ubuntu.com is pretty easy to remember as legit, however with flavors like Lubuntu, http://lubuntu.me is a little harder to remember, as lubuntu.net is a fan site and not official; where you'll note ubuntu.com only ever points to lubuntu.me

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  • Finally as proof that x86 is not dead, the current 18.04.3 status can be seen at iso.qa.ubuntu.com/qatracker/milestones/405/builds (you'll note many i386 mentions, which is the way debian & ubuntu refer to x86/32bit) this is put as a comment so it's easy to delete, but I'd stick to flavors that went to the trouble of testing the x86 if I was you.. – guiverc Aug 8 '19 at 10:50
  • You answers are excellent, helpful. Thank you.One question, is it your results of testing 32-bit flavors of 18.04 that will be published in a few hours? 18.04 LTS will still not be 32-bit . Right? – Hotspur Aug 8 '19 at 11:03
  • Machines I used in testing x86/i386/32bit 18.04.3 flavors include (1) dell latitude d610 (pentium m, 1gb, intel i915), (2) ibm thinkpad t43 (pentium m, 1.5gb ram, radeon x300), (3) hp dx6120mt (mini-tower, pentium 4 dual core, 3gb, winfast clone of nvidia 7600gt) ... the third listed actually has Lubuntu 19.04 & Xubuntu 19.04 (both x86) installed, but it's orphaned as won't 19.10 upgrade support, so stick with a 18.04 – guiverc Aug 8 '19 at 12:03
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sudo apt update does not run on unsupported releases, but you will be able to install the Broadcom driver on any supported release, for example on Ubuntu MATE 18.04 32-bit. Xubuntu 18.04 and Lubuntu 18.04 also have 32-bit ISOs available to download. It is a misconception to think that Canonical has pulled the plug on all 32-bit flavors, however support for 32-bit architecture is being phased out bit by bit. Planning forward the next computer that you buy should support 64-bit architecture if you want to continue to use a supported *buntu flavor.

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  • Thank you very much. I am surprised because when I looked online for downloadable versions of Ubuntu I noticed on 64-bit versions of Ubuntu 18. – Hotspur Aug 8 '19 at 10:28
  • Ubuntu 18.04 is 64-bit only. – karel Aug 8 '19 at 10:34
  • Thank you, thank you. Who'd have known all that - that there are 32-bit versions of 18? – Hotspur Aug 8 '19 at 10:36
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    That looks like an excellent article to me. Thank you. – Hotspur Aug 8 '19 at 11:01
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    Referring to your comment, which I now realize is specific to unflavored Ubuntu. Thanks! – Organic Marble Aug 8 '19 at 11:57
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You can download 32 bit Lubuntu 18.04 LTS here: http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/lubuntu/releases/18.04/release/

Distro choices are personal and opinion-based but I'm a big fan of this one.

You can try before installing using a 'live USB', highly recommended.

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If you need the 32 bit version of Ubuntu 18.04 desktop you can use the mini iso 32 bit and select the Ubuntu Gnome Desktop during installation process. The mini iso can be found here: i386 - For 32-bit Intel/AMD (x86)

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  • Do I understand right that "mini" is a flavor of 18.04? Do you prefer mini to other flavors? – Hotspur Aug 8 '19 at 11:15
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    Mini is a bare bones install; you'll have to install most applications separately. – Organic Marble Aug 8 '19 at 11:58

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