Upgrade or not?


If I upgrade to 18.10 then I’m left with loads of old ppa’s, and another update to 19.04 even more old ppa’s which you keep or not. Also I loose all my Virtualbox installations and have to re-install again which is also a pain with Windblows 7 or 10. Also, American Truck and Eurotruck Simulator scores are all lost on new install. what to do? Who knows ;-(


First, you should not upgrade to 19.04 now, it’s still an alpha version aimed at testers and developers, it’s not ready for general use. In the best case, it will be usable without too much issues during beta but it’s highly recommended to upgrade only when the final version is available (i.e. in april 2019).

Then about PPAs −and 3rd-party repos overall: it’s your choice and responsibility to use them and if you do, you have to manage them over time (so to speak). When you upgrade to a new Ubuntu version, the 3rd-party repos are disabled to avoid issues. After the upgrade, you should check the list of your PPAs, check which one are still relevant, re-enable the ones that are (don’t forget to manually switch them to the new version codename), remove the ones that are not, check the versions (if a PPA hasn’t been upgraded to the new version, check if the old one can still be used or not) and so on.

Your issue with Virtualbox is weird: when you say that you lose your VMs, do you mean that they disappear after an upgrade or that they’re unusable (e.g. they don’t start anymore, in which case, what kind of error message do you get if any) ?

The same with your games “scores”: do you mean the game data, the saves and so on? Unless you make a new Ubuntu install (rather than an upgrade) that deletes the content of your home folder, you shouldn’t lose anything. Also, if the games are on Steam and use the cloud saves, you should keep your saved data even in the case of a reinstallation, so it’s a bit weird and would need a bit of precisions.


Thank you very much. Yes it’s only when I do a brand new install I’m not sure how to save the old Virtualbox or Eurotruck. So it’s a bit of a pain. Yes I did upgrade to 18.10 last October, but I had an issue ( can’t remember what) so did new install of 18.04. So I will wait until April I think and do new install. Thank you


Note that besides LTS (where you can upgrade from one LTS to the next one), you can only upgrade from an Ubuntu version to the next one, so if you want to go from 18.04 to 19.04, you’ll have to upgrade to 18.10 first or do a full reinstall of 19.04. Well, technically you can do a manual upgrade from any version to any other one but be prepared to face and fix issues.

Now, when you do a full reinstall and wipe your home folder, you’ll lose all your personal data, such as your Virtualbox VMs, your saved games and such. If you want to keep them, you’ll have to backup them before reinstallation and put the backup back afterwards. Everything is stored in your home folder. Usually (when developers follow the guidelines), the configuration files of a software are stored in ~/.config (~ being you home folder) and the data in ~/.local/share. But some softwares don’t follow this and put their stuff anywhere, like a folder directly in your home. In summary, you’ll have to look a bit everywhere in your home to find them.

Virtualbox’s VMs are stored in a folder named “VirtualBox VMs” in your home. As for your games, I can’t tell you exactly where they store their files but you can check the PC Gaming Wiki which has info on a lot of games, including their data location on every OS available. But again, if you play them on Steam and they use the cloud saves, it should sync your data from the Steam servers back after a reinstallation.


Are you sure you lost your Virtualbox installations. There is most likely your installations are still there, you may have to import them again. I have VDI files that I import.


Thank you again. So what really you are really saying is, its safer and cleaner to do a new install, which comes back to my original re. having to install Virtualbox and American Truck Simulator again. I’ll have to find a way of saving the files…help!

Mate is great though and always have it as my main distro with another 12 in Virtualbox

Thank you



Safer really depends of the state of your system: the upgrade process is supposed to be safe and when bad things happen during an upgrade, it’s usually because of using numerous PPA that have packages done in an unusual way.

When I said that you should be prepared to face issue is when you don’t use the upgrade process and do it manually because you want to upgrade from an older version (e.g. from 18.04 to 19.04 when the officially supported method is only from 18.10). It’s a method that can work but it’s not recommended.

A full reinstall is easier to do and nothing bad can happen with the upgrade process, as there’s no upgrade, but on the other side, you’ll lose your personal data so you have to backup it (unless you have a dedicated partition for /home, which is the case only if you made the partitioning yourself during the initial installation).

I personally go for the upgrade with each version, I almost never had to reinstall Ubuntu (when I had, it was mainly because I changed drive). Only had an upgrade issue once, when going from 18.04 to 18.10. I was able to fix it though it was a bit of a mess.

If you want to do a full reinstall, you’ll have to copy you VMs and saved games (check the link to the wiki I gave to find them) to a spare drive and copy them back afterwards. Of course, you’ll need to have quite some space available for the backup, as your VMs will probably use a few dozens of GB.


If you want to test 19.04 alpha, a virtual machine is the best way to go rather than installing it on real hardware.


Thank you Terzag for info…ok I’ll have a go again at upgrading route and try not to break the system again. Don’t like Mint or Peppermint too much as everything thing I so much at hand with Mate. Tried Manjaro, but all other distribution very similar.


Ok thanks, I didn’t realize 19.04 was available. Good idea though in VB. I’ll try not to wreck it :frowning:


Oh dear. Went to upgrade from 18.04 to 18.10, but got a bit bored waiting, so played a game of cards and upgrade went all pear shaped as you can see

in attached picture. Couldn’t get back to recover and was left with a green screen and couple of desktop icons. So gave up and put fresh install 18.10 on from memory stick. Lost all my VirtualBox and ATS again.


I’m not sure about the first picture: is it what you got during the upgrade process or afterwards? I’m quite confused by the fonts issue. Do you have several languages (especially non-latin ones) installed for some reason?

Also not sure about the second picture: I assume it’s after a reboot and the desktop doesn’t fully load? It might have been fixable, though it’s hard to say without trying things (and it’s a bit too late).

Did you have a vanilla 18.04 installation or did you use 3rd party repos (if so, which ones)?

BTW, there’s something I didn’t mention earlier as I didn’t know that you had a second drive (the 1 TB one I can see on the desktop) but if it uses a Linux filesystem (maybe a Windows one too) and you have space on it, you could put your VMs on it, so that you won’t lose them if you have to reinstall again at some point. You can set the directory to use in Virtualbox’s prefs.


Thanks Terzag

I’ll have to look at driving the VMs to my other drive. I didn’t loose any of my personal stuff as I use two other external drives to back everything up. Can’t remember which 3rd party repos I had.

Only one language used as can’t sprechenzy Deuch and can only kiss in French



Can’t remember which 3rd party repos I had.

It might be useful to check before the next upgrade you try, in case your issues come from such a repo (which is the case most of the time when an upgrade breaks).

Only one language used as can’t sprechenzy Deuch and can only kiss in French

I was rather wondering about non-latin languages, like chinese, japanese, russian… as what we see in your capture looks like what could happen when a font is missing (and as the english text is still readable in the menus and on the desktop, I thought maybe it trued to display text in a different alphabet). I don’t think it’s that, though, but it could have been a possibility.