Thursday, 21 April 2016

Upgrade to Ubuntu 16.04 with Aptik

Upgrade to Ubuntu 16.04 with Aptik

Ubuntu 16.04 was just released a few hours ago. Here’s the easy way to upgrade to Xenial using the Aptik Migration Utility.

1. Install Aptik on your current system

Open a terminal window and run the following commands to install Aptik.

sudo apt-add-repository -y ppa:teejee2008/ppa ; \
sudo apt-get update ; \
sudo apt-get install aptik

Note: Copy-paste the entire text given above. Don’t copy line by line.

2. Backup your current system

  1. Plug-in a portable hard-disk or a USB thumb drive with enough free space (8GB or more is recommended).

  2. Start Aptik from the Application Menu and select a folder on the portable disk as the backup location.

  1. Click on the “One-Click Backup” button and let it finish. This will create a backup of pretty much everything on your current system.

3. Install Ubuntu 16.04

Download Ubuntu 16.04 from the official website and do a fresh installation.

4. Restore Backups

  1. Install Aptik again on the new system using the command given in Step 1.

  2. Plug-in the hard disk that was used earlier and select the backup folder in Aptik.

  3. Click on the “One-Click Restore” button and let it finish. This may take a while as all the softwares that you had on your previous system will be re-installed.


Reset Desktop Layout

Restoring the Application Settings will also restore your desktop layout from the previous system. In case you want a fresh desktop, you need to run the following commands, log-out and then log-in again.

Note: Copy-paste the entire text given below in a terminal window. Don’t copy line by line.


rm -rf $HOME/.cinnamon ; \
rm -rf $HOME/.config/cinnamon-session ; \
rm -rf $HOME/.local/share/cinnamon ; \
dconf reset -f /org/cinnamon/


dconf reset -f /org/compiz/

Xfce (source):

xfce4-panel --quit ; \
pkill xfconfd ; \
rm -rf $HOME/.config/xfce4/panel ; \
rm -rf $HOME/.config/xfce4/xfconf/xfce-perchannel-xml/xfce4-panel.xml ; \


rm -rf $HOME/.config/mate ; \
mate-panel --reset

Note: You need to log out and log-in again for the changes to take effect.

Free Up Disk Space by Clearing APT Cache

Run the following command to delete downloaded packages in the cache located at /var/cache/apt/archives. This should free up nearly 1-2 GB on your system.

sudo apt-get autoclean

In case you plan to re-install some software in the future and wish to keep the downloaded packages, run the following command instead:

sudo apt-get clean

This will delete older package versions from the cache (new versions will be kept).

Install the Latest Linux Kernel

Xenial comes with Linux v4.4.6 which is already one month old. You can upgrade to the latest mainline kernel (v5.1 as of now) using the Ubuntu Kernel Update Utility.


  1. Thanks a lot for this post and this utility.
    A painful process transformed to painless one!

    1. Just to add one improvement..
      when i backed up the applications settings individually.. it only backed up root user, as that one is selected by default. It would be nice if it can notify this that only selected user was backed up.. It is easy to miss, as i missed it. Though .bashrc or .profile that i was interested in did not had much of the content difference from root's , it didnt had much impact.. but a notification about what the utility did.. would be better.
      Thanks for this good utility.

    2. I'll change this in the next update

  2. This is a timeshift question, I hope that is ok. I installed timeshift but the backup device pulldown menu will not let me select any devices, no usb sticks, no other partitions.The only choice is /dev/sda5 etc...

    Am I doing something wrong?

    1. The pull-down menu will display only Linux partitions. It looks like /dev/sda5 is the only Linux partition on your system. Format a USB stick with EXT3. It will show up in the menu.

    2. Hi Tony,
      In following up the TimeShift conversation, a USB stick can't be added to a VPS in the cloud! It would be good if TimeShift could connect to a remote backup server, which would avoid backing up to the VPS's drive and copying separately. Rsync?
      Thanks for your utilities.

    3. Copying snapshots to a remote server is not supported since it will break the hard-links between snapshots. The snapshots can be copied manually to the remote server but this will create a new copy of each hard-linked file.

  3. What about a /opt & /usr/local backup option ?

  4. thank you for making this software

  5. Thanks for this. Makes a clean install a breeze.

  6. Conky Lua next generation from Conky Manager doesn't work in Linux Mint 18. Could you make it to work again?

    Thank you!

  7. LOVE THIS APP! I moved from one Ubuntu 16.04 machine to another painlessly.

    One small bug or improvement: It didn't move my current Unity menu settings over.

  8. One more improvement suggestion: Copy VPN setups.

  9. Any chances of creating an AppImg portable version of Aptik?

  10. thanks for this software I tell my all friends they use this software Thanks for sharing with us


  11. Gottfried Freudenberger6 January 2017 at 23:43

    Thank you, great tool! I always struggled getting the system upgraded without transfering all the bugs and config errors from the old into the new system.

    I'm just wondering why you made Aptik to spend a lot of effort to create a new /home partition and then transfer the old settings and data into it. What I used to do was setting up the new system with only a small new /home drive and then changed the entry in fstab to refer to the old /home partition with all settings and data for all users. It always seemed to work well.

    Anything wrong with that approach? Sorry, I'm not an IT expert...

    Thanks for your advice.

    1. Using the home directory from the previous install will carry over the configuration files for *all* your applications. Applications such as Cinnamon and Gnome desktop undergo many changes with each new version. It's better to keep the newer configuration files that they ship with. With Aptik you can backup the settings for few applications which you use frequently, while keeping the fresh config files for all other applications.

  12. Pls, this work on Elementary OS Loki? How can reset this desktop Layout? Thanks a lot!

  13. Can I use Aptik to transfer from Ubuntu 12.04 32bit to a fresh install 16.04 64bit?

    1. Can be done but you may end up with issues. Ubuntu 12.04 is very old. Backup and restore the "Installed Software" item only. Skip everything else.

    2. Thanks Tony. Why not also backup/restore "home directory data" - what issues might occur? I want to migrate up to a different architecture (64bit) so would software convert on installation or still run as 32bit?

    3. The "Installed Software" item saves the names of installed packages and re-installs packages with the same name on the new system. So on a 64-bit system it would download and install 64-bit packages. You can use the backup/restore home directory data also - it should not cause problems.

  14. Tried to install Aptik in Ubuntu12.04 as per instructions but it failed. From the terminal: "following packages have unmet dependencies:
    aptik : Depends: libgee-0.8-2 (>= 0.8.3) but it is not installable"
    Synaptic shows aptik v 1.6.6~73~ubuntu12.04.1 but cannot install because of broken packages. So I guess I am out of luck unless there is an older downloadable version which does not depend on libgee >= 0.8.3