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I decided to upgrade my Ubuntu distribution from 14.04.5 LTS 64-bit to 16.04.5 LTS 64-bit and I did so in the terminal with the following command sudo do-release-upgrade and I ended up with no GUI, non functional APT and the error failed to start load kernel module just at the start. I somehow managed to make APT functional by running the commands:

  1. sudo apt-get update
  2. sudo dkpg --configure -a
  3. sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
  4. sudo apt-get -f install
  5. apt-get: relocation error: /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/libapt-pkg.so.5.0: symbol _ZNKSt7__cxx1112basic_stringIcSt11char_traitsIcESaIcEE7compareERKS4_, version GLIBCXX_3.4.21 not defined in file libstdc++.so.6 with link time reference

I do not remember particularly how many times I ran these commands and after that APT seemed to be fixed. The last command comes from this link and I was not able to find the particular file proposed there so I downloaded and installed a later version of that library via dpkg. After all of these I still have lots of broken packages, no GUI and the first four commands above do not seem to fix any issues. Fortunately this is a dual-boot system and GRUB works fine so I can use Windows. On Windows I have burned a CD with 16.04 image thinking it might help somehow. Also looking at the PPAs and 3rd party sources I see all of them are commented out and a string is added to make it obvious that the upgrade procedure commented them out automatically.

Is it possible to restore the GUI and fix the dependencies without much hassle? How should I proceed or should I just wipe the portion of the harddrive containing Ubuntu files(home is mounted on a separate partition) and proceed with a clean install? I have lots of applications and I think most of them will transition relatively smoothly to 16.04 and I would not prefer to install all of them one by one.

EDIT: I managed to remedy the failed to start load kernel module my commenting out the line starting with rtc in the file /etc/modules, so one problem is resolved. Although the graphical login interface and the Unity desktop does not work I can start the X server and launch Firefox, text editors, terminal emulator etc.; however, if I minimize them I cannot reach them again as keyboard shortcuts do not work either. The dependency problem is still there and I am thinking of installing all dependencies with dpkg by hand, but apt or dpkg does not even allow removal of some packages(need the new version for new release of some packages) which hinders my capability.

EDIT 2:

$ sudo apt-get install -f Reading package lists... Done Building dependency tree        Reading state information... Done Correcting dependencies... failed. The following packages have unmet dependencies:  account-plugin-yahoo : Depends: telepathy-haze but it is not installed  empathy : Depends: libcheese-gtk23 (>= 3.4.0) but it is not installable
           Depends: libcogl15 (>= 1.15.8) but it is not installable
           Recommends: telepathy-haze but it is not installed
           Recommends: gnome-contacts but it is not installed
           Recommends: nautilus-sendto-empathy but it is not installable  gnome-system-monitor : Depends: libglibmm-2.4-1c2a (>=
2.36.2) but it is not installable
                        Depends: libgtkmm-3.0-1 (>= 3.8.1) but it is not installable
                        Depends: libsigc++-2.0-0c2a (>= 2.0.2) but it is not installable  gstreamer1.0-clutter : Depends: libcogl15 (>=
1.15.8) but it is not installable  libbaloofiles4 : Depends: libxapian22 but it is not installable  libbalooxapian4 : Depends: libxapian22 but it is not installable  libgl1-mesa-dev : Depends: libgl1-mesa-glx (= 12.0.6-0ubuntu0.16.04.1) but 11.2.0-1ubuntu2 is installed  libgl1-mesa-glx : Depends: libglapi-mesa (=
11.2.0-1ubuntu2) but 10.1.3-0ubuntu0.6 is installed
                   Breaks: libgl1-mesa-glx:i386 (!= 11.2.0-1ubuntu2) but 10.1.3-0ubuntu0.6 is installed  libgl1-mesa-glx:i386 : Breaks: libgl1-mesa-glx (!= 10.1.3-0ubuntu0.6) but 11.2.0-1ubuntu2 is installed  libgnomevfs2-dev : Depends: libxml2-dev but it is not installed  libnux-4.0-0 : Depends: libsigc++-2.0-0c2a (>= 2.0.2) but it is not installable  libqapt2 : Depends: libxapian22 but it is not installable  libstdc++6 : Depends: gcc-5-base (=
5.4.0-6ubuntu1~16.04.4) but 5.4.1-2ubuntu1~14.04 is installed  libstdc++6:i386 : Depends: gcc-5-base:i386 (= 5.4.0-6ubuntu1~16.04.4) but 5.4.1-2ubuntu1~14.04 is installed  ppa-purge : Depends: aptitude (>= 0.6.6-1ubuntu1.2)  synaptic : Depends: libxapian22 but it is not installable  tasksel : Depends: aptitude (>= 0.2.15-1)  vim-gtk : Depends: libperl5.18 (>= 5.18.2) but it is not installable  vlc-nox : Depends: libgnutls28 (>= 3.2.10-0) but it is not installable
           Recommends: libdvdcss2  zeitgeist-core : Depends: libxapian22 but it is not installable E: Error, pkgProblemResolver::Resolve generated breaks, this may be caused by held packages. E: Unable to correct dependencies
  • Please see the edit, I think somehow I should force remove some packages. Furthermore, since I have access to everything in my Linux partition and the GUI I can provide the any kind of file or logs if need be. – Vesnog Feb 12 '17 at 23:20
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Okay I managed to resolve the dependency issue by investigating and force removing problematic packages with commands such as sudo dpkg -r --force-all gcc-5-base. After these I ran sudo apt-get -f install followed by an update an upgrade and the package manager now seems to be fine. My next step was to install the ubuntu-desktop package which granted me the unity side bar, some keyboard shortcuts and a working desktop with hot corners. However, the display manager does not seem to automatically take over at startup and I installed lightdm again, but during login I still see some status messages from disk checkups and I see a wallpaper with Ubuntu 14.04 written on it. When I enter my password and wait for a long time nothing happens and the GUI does not load. I have to manually switch to one of the ttys then executed startx command followed by the unity command in another pseudo terminal which is counter productive and annoying. How can I circumvent this and have the system boot normally? Oh by the way I lack the system status bar and the icons on it.

TLDR Package dependencies seem to be resolved; but GUI, display manager and the window manager does not seem to be working properly. The status bar is missing and I have to manually access the GUI.

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