Upgrade Linux Mint (16/Petra to 17.1/Rebecca)

2015-01-22 18:01

One of my laptops was still running Linux Mint 16, also known as Petra, and an upgrade was long overdue. This post documents the process I used.

Note: I don't guarantee anything. Linux Mint is a binary dist based on another binary dist (Ubuntu) based on yet another binary dist (Debian). If the upgrade fails you are on your own.


The following steps is needed:

  1. update current system repositories
  2. upgrade current system
  3. change repository sources manually
  4. update current system repositories (as in step 1 but with the new repository sources)
  5. distribution upgrade
  6. upgrade current system (same steps as in 2 but using the new distribution version)
  7. reboot

Petra, v16, is based off of Ubuntu Saucy and Rebecca, v17.1, is based off Ubuntu trusty. This is important when changing the repository sources. The steps outlined above is done with the following commands (dist-upgrade will take some time to finish):

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get upgrade
$ sudo sed --in-place=.bak 's/saucy/trusty/' /etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-package-repositories.list
$ sudo sed --in-place=.bak 's/petra/rebecca/' /etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-package-repositories.list
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
$ sudo apt-get upgrade·

The sed commands will replace the repository source inline and do a backup, with suffix .bak, of the original file. When doing dist-upgrade replace your config files with the package-maintainers version unless you really know otherwise.

Missing Language Setting

The language settings was changed between Petra (v16) and Qiana (v17). To replace it manually run the following:

$ sudo apt-get install mintlocale
$ sudo apt-get remove gnome-language-selector

Additional PPA Repositories

In case you have used additional PPA repositories in Petra you need to update those from saucy to trusty as well. Look for saucy is the output from the following command to know what to edit:

$ inxi -r

After editing the appropriate file(s) run an apt-get update and apt-get upgrade.

Xfce4, Thunar: Failed to mount "/ on ".

If you run into this problem when trying to Browse Network in Thunar you might be missing gvfs-backends:

$ sudo apt-get install gvfs-backends

Now close and restart Thunar and you should be able to browse your network again.