I have several machines (Ubuntu 16.04) created via debootstrap which now cannot start anymore due to systemd changes (I start them via systemd-nspawn).

Efforts to fix this are ongoing on the host systemd side but the simple solution would be to have the guests update to the latest systemd version. Which they cannot do the normal apt way as they cannot start...

What would be the best way to update these images?

  • chroot to it and run apt-get upgrade? – muru Oct 10 '16 at 10:00

I would boot a different install, make the broken root filesystems visible to the different install, and then run apt update ; apt dist-upgrade from within a chroot.

You can do this manually, but the simplest way to do this would be to use the Ubuntu installation disk (mini.iso is fine) and select the rescue option, followed by "start a shell in the target".

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