Updating Your Raspberry Pi

By | October 31, 2018

Updating your Raspberry Pi is easy and can be performed in a few simple steps. First a few details:

  • In Linux, software is referred to as packages. Most Raspberry Pi users don’t strictly stick to this terminology and use software, applications or apps to mean the same thing. Any of these terms get the meaning across so it is not that important.
  • The most common way to update or install packages in Linux is on the command line. Most of the time “apt-get” or “apt” commands are used on the Raspberry Pi. Almost all examples on the Web use apt-get so I will use it here.
  • Other Linux distributions use “yum” and “rpm” for managing packages.
  • Git is popular but is not used for package management (well, sort of). It is a great way to manage and distribute code. It is especially useful when a lot of people are working on the same project.

All of these commands require the use of “sudo”. It allows you to perform administrative tasks without logging in as root. Realize that working on any computer logged in as the root user (Administrator in Windows world) is dangerous.

Always, the first step is to run the update command.

sudo apt-get update

Here is a screen shot showing the results. Note that you will probably not get the same result when you enter any of these commands.

Update Screenshot

The second step is the upgrade command.

sudo apt-get upgrade

Notice in the screenshot that a few upgrades were needed and before proceeding the user is prompted for permission to do so. Just type “y” and return to proceed.

Upgrade Screenshot

Below shows what happens after answering yes.

Upgrade Result Screenshot

After completing the update and upgrade steps you might want to run autoremove and autoclean. These are just housekeeping commands and can easily be skipped.

sudo apt-get autoremove
sudo apt-get autoclean

If you are curious about autoremove or autoclean you can check out the documentation on them in the man (manual) page for apt-get.

man apt-get

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