Upgrading the Kernel In Linux Mint 13

Synaptic Package Manager

Upgrading the Linux kernel (the software at the heart of the Linux operating system) is an easy, painless task.  The upgrades, when available, appear in Synaptic as just another software update.  There is nothing to compile.  A few clicks of the mouse and the new kernel automatically downloads and installs.

Click on the first item in the list titled “linux-generic” to highlight this entry.  Hold down the [Shift] key and click on the last item in the list.  This will highlight all the items in the list.  Release the [Shift] key.

Right-click on any of the items in the list and select “Mark for Upgrade” from the context menu.

Mark for upgrade

This box is simply letting you know that new software will be installed on your system:

List of upgrades to be installed

Click the “Mark” button to accept the new Linux kernel.  Then click on the large “Apply” button near the top of Synaptic.

Summary of upgrades and installs

Click the “Apply” button on the Summary box to begin downloading and install the new Linux kernel.

Downloading and installing updates in Synaptic

The new software is automatically downloaded and installed.

The new Linux kernel will not be in use until you reboot your computer.  In the meantime, you may continue to use your system.  No data will be lost.

When you decide to reboot, the new kernel will automatically be used by Linux Mint.  There is nothing more to select or configure.

We’re done, right?  Maybe not.

The previous version of the Linux kernel, although dormant, is still in the system.  It’s perfectly safe to leave it.  It will not affect your computer in any way.  But it is taking up space on the hard drive needlessly and you may want to remove it.

The safest way to do this is to use a program called Ubuntu Tweak.  You can find and install this program through Synaptic by clicking on the “Search” button and typing in the name of the program.

Ubuntu Tweak Janitor Tab

Click on the “Janitor” tab and then click on the box next to “System” to place a check mark in the box.  Ubuntu Tweak will scan your system for any files that can be safely removed.  Place a check mark in any boxes it reports and click on the “Clean” button.

Enter password

Because you are making changes to the system itself, you will need to enter your password twice to remove these files.  Enter your password and click “Authenticate” to begin.

Removing packages

Once the old files have been removed the system is scanned again to see if any related files can be deleted.

Removing package configurations

Click the “Clean” button again.  This time, however, you will not need to re-enter your password.

Now we’re done!  Your system is fully up-to-date and best of all…

Cool! Your system is clean!

 

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