Ubuntu / Linux news and application reviews.

As I was saying in the previous part of the Ubuntu newbie guide - How to Add Custom Repositories, the update system in Ubuntu and most Linux distributions for that matter, is amazing and it keeps all your applications up-to-date by automatically installing the updates or by prompting you. Also, you can install only crucial updates or all of them. Here is how to set them:

Go to System > Administration > Software Sources, on the "Update" tab:


As you can see, you can set what kind of updates to install (Important, Recommended, Pre-released or Unsuported), the update checking frequency and if to install them automatically, just prompt you or download the updates in the background and notify you. When there are new updates, an icon will appear in the notification area (you may know it by the name of "Systray"), click that icon and select to update your computer. Also, to do it in a terminal window, first you need to update the repositories with:

sudo apt-get update

and then proceed with the upgrade (installation of the updates) by typing the following command in a terminal:

sudo apt-get upgrade

But the best part about the update/upgrade system in Ubuntu is that (at this last part, Windows sucks because you need to format before installing a new release) you can set the update system to notify you about new distribution releases which practically means to get prompted when a new version of Ubuntu is out (normal - any version, or long term support - LTS which are versions for which updates are provided for a longer period of time than usual) and you can, of course, install those new Ubuntu releases without having to format. These distribution upgrades are run very smoothly and all applications installed through repositories work like a charm. For example, on my last distribution upgrade, Amarok took up from where it left with my song from that exact same second. Try that on Windows: install Win7 over Windows XP or Vista and have it remember all your installed applications and settings. It's of course impossible, i was just kidding :)

This part is shorter than usual but essential, as it is very important to keep your computer up to date so that Ubuntu remains uncrackable as in the last White Hackers Contest PWN2OWN:

In the 2008 edition, MacBook Air was hacked in just 2 minutes while Windows Vista SP1 lasted until the second day of the competition. Ubuntu 7.10 couldn't be hacked.