Ubuntu MATE 16.04 LTS reaches end of life

Ubuntu MATE 16.04 LTS reached end of life on 30 April 2019.

As we're an official flavour of Ubuntu, our LTS releases are supported for 3 years, as opposed to regular Ubuntu's 5 years. This means MATE components of your system will no longer receive updates after today, but foundational components will continue to receive security updates from Ubuntu.

To check the support level of your system, run this command in the Terminal:


:ubuntu_mate: To continue the retrospective future, we recommend upgrading to Ubuntu MATE 18.04 LTS or later.

If you're still running 16.04 LTS and are not ready to upgrade, don't panic! Your system will still be as secure as the Ubuntu base until April 2021, but please bear in mind some of your packages and applications will no longer receive updates.

On a side note:

  • Ubuntu 14.04 (regular version) also reached end of life today.
  • PowerPC support for Ubuntu MATE has officially been discontinued. 16.04.1 was the last build released.

While no more Ubuntu MATE-related packages are going to be updated, other packages for Ubuntu 16.04 will still be updated. So Ubuntu MATE 16.04 remains safe to use if you have all the latest package updates, but a number of Ubuntu MATE-related applications won't receive updates anymore. So you'll likely miss out on future MATE desktop releases, etc. So if for some reason you can't upgrade to 18.04, there's no rush.

Why no further 16.04-based Ubuntu MATE releases for PowerPC couldn't be produced I don't know. While PowerPC was dropped as an architecture entirely starting with Ubuntu 17.04, packages in Ubuntu 16.04 for the PowerPC architecture continue to get updates. I do feel as though the Ubuntu MATE developers should have produced ISOs for PowerPC for every 16.04 point release, but that's just my opinion. They produce ISOs for 32-bit x86 for every 18.04 point release even though they no longer create ISOs for 32-bit x86 for releases newer than 18.04 so why not produce ISOs for PowerPC for every 16.04 point release?

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The main purpose of point releases in LTS releases is to deliver new hardware enablement stacks. The size of the set of PowerPC devices compatible with 16.04 that require new hardware drivers is zero.

Alright. I thought that point releases were made to give users an updated ISO so that they can install an Ubuntu system that was fully up to date at the time of building so that they don't have to update so many packages after installation. But what you said does make sense; Ubuntu 18.04.2, for example, uses the 18.10 kernel for the HWE kernel.