I updated the linux kernel from 3.5 to 3.16 by downloading tar.xz file from linuxkernel.org and compiled, and subsequently installed successfully on my ubuntu machine(meaning I am able to see the boot options when I start the pc and can log into either 3.5 or 3.16 version of linux kernel) but now I want to remove the newer version. steps I followed

  1. logged into older version 3.5
  2. ran dpkg --list | grep linux-image but there is no mention of 3.16

    root@h2o-Vostro-1015:~# dpkg --list | grep linux-image
    ii  linux-image-3.5.0-17-generic              3.5.0-17.28                               i386         Linux kernel image for version 3.5.0 on 32 bit x86 SMP
    ii  linux-image-extra-3.5.0-17-generic        3.5.0-17.28                               i386         Linux kernel image for version 3.5.0 on 32 bit x86 SMP
    ii  linux-image-generic                                            i386         Generic Linux kernel image

which indicated that I have only 3.5 version installed,but I can boot into 3.16 version and also

  • I checked the /boot directory, there I can see the initrd.img-3.16.0-rc4, which proves that the 3.16 version is still present.

had above steps worked I would have tried either removal through synaptic or

sudo apt-get remove --purge 3.16.0*

command via terminal.

kindly advise how can I remove the newer version.

  • askubuntu.com/questions/2793/… – Elder Geek Jul 12 '14 at 16:50
  • the solution in given link to question is for removing older versions of linux kernel, whereas I am intersted in removing the newer version. in addition to that I tried the ones given in this answer too but to no avail – Himanshu Sourav Jul 12 '14 at 17:29

Since you installed the kernel manually, posting a link to what instructions you followed would be helpful.

To delete manually, you can run ls -l /boot . Typically the files would be:

  1. abi-*
  2. initrd.img-*
  3. config-*
  4. System.map-*
  5. vmlinuz-*

Delete these files (corresponding to 3.16) and update grub.


All your kernels should be found in /boot. As super user(root), delete the ones you don't need and update grub.

  • are you suggesting manual removal of files & directory..? and if yes which ones..? – Himanshu Sourav Jul 12 '14 at 17:31
  • Yes. "Which ones?" The ones you specified in your question. – Elder Geek Jul 12 '14 at 19:43

NOTE: Installing kernels (or other types of software) OUTSIDE of the package manager causes your work not to show up in apt-get (dpkg) and may have some ramifications to system stability and maintainability.

It is easy to remove a specific kernel however, simply go to the /boot file, and remove the files with the matching version number. Then you must update the grub menu to remove that entry (if it even exists) in it.

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