How to Upgrade Linux Mint 16 (Petra) to Linux Mint 17 (Qiana)

Linux Mint is an Ubuntu based distribution and one of the most loved and used Linux distribution these days. It provides a complete new experience for users which includes browser plugins, media codecs, support for DVD playback, Java and other desktop components being most of it desktop oriented.

Upgrade Linux Mint 16 to Linux Mint 17

Upgrade Linux Mint 16 to Linux Mint 17

On May 31st 2014 official Linux Mint developers announced on their blog, that the final version of Linux Mint 17, codename Qiana with both versions available for download, Cinnamon and Mate desktop, with an official support until 2019 – same as its mother distribution Ubuntu 14.04.

Some of this release features are:
  1. A new Update Manager improved version.
  2. Driver Manager can now install drivers without an Internet connection
  3. MDM 1.6 Login Screen with HiDPI support and recovery mode.
  4. A new Language Settings tool.
  5. An improved Software Sources configuration tool.
  6. A light redesigned Welcome Screen.
  7. Cinnamon 2.2 with better looking settings.
  8. System improvements.
  9. A new collection of backgrounds.
  10. Linux Kernel 3.13.
  11. Linux Mint future versions releases with the same package base until 2016.
  12. EFI and Bluetooth support.
  13. PAE Kernel for x32bit versions.
  14. No support for Nvidia Optimus graphics chipsets yet (minimal support is ensured by nvidia-prime package).

This tutorial will focus on how to upgrade your current version of Linux Mint 16 Petra to new released version of Linux Mint 17 Qiana.

Download Linux Mint 17 Images

For a clean installation without an upgrade process and other useful information download DVD ISO images using the following links.

  1. For Linux Mint 17 “Qiana” Cinnamon 32-bit and 64-bit –
  2. For Linux Mint 17 “Qiana” Mate 32-bit and 64-bit –

Warning : Before you attempt to start the upgrade process make sure that you made a backup of your important data in case something goes wrong and the system breaks.

Upgrading Linux Mint 16 (Petra) to Linux Mint 17 (Qiana)

1. Before you start, you can check your Linux Mint version by opening a Terminal and run the following commands.

$ sudo cat /etc/issue
$ sudo cat /etc/
$ sudo cat /etc/lsb-release
$ sudo cat /etc/os-release
Check Linux Mint Version

Check Linux Mint Version

2. On the second step make sure you create a backup copy of your system sources.

$ sudo cp /etc/apt/sources.list  /etc/apt/sources.list.bak
$ sudo cp /etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-package-repositories.list  /etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-package-repositories.list.bak

3. Now it’s time to start editing Linux Mint software list for ‘apt-get‘ to start and pull software packages from new repositories locations by opening and editing ‘/etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-package-repositories.list‘ file and replace “petra” with “qiana” and “saucy” with “trusty” on all lines.

Also if you have Source and Getdeb Repositories enabled make sure that the names are changed on ‘/etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-source-repositories.list‘ and ‘/etc/apt/sources.list.d/getdeb.list‘ too.

Add Linux Mint 17 Repository

Add Linux Mint 17 Repository

4. Another way of editing those file is by using sed command in terminal.

$ sudo sed -i 's/saucy/trusty/' /etc/apt/sources.list
$ sudo sed -i 's/petra/qiana/' /etc/apt/sources.list
$ sudo sed -i 's/saucy/trusty/' /etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-package-repositories.list
$ sudo sed -i 's/petra/qiana/' /etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-package-repositories.list

## For Package Sources only if they are enabled ##
$ sudo sed -i 's/saucy/trusty/' /etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-source-repositories.list
$ sudo sed -i 's/petra/qiana/' /etc/apt/sources.list.d/official-source-repositories.list

## For Getdeb Sources only if they are enabled ##
$ sudo sed -i 's/saucy/trusty/' /etc/apt/sources.list.d/getdeb.list
$ sudo sed -i 's/petra/qiana/' /etc/apt/sources.list.d/getdeb.list

NOTE: If you have other Repositories or PPA enabled on you system visit their official page and make sure they provide packages for Ubuntu 14.04 or Linux Mint 17, else edit or remove them now from your system.

5. After editing Repositories list files using one of the above methods start the upgrade process by running a series of commands.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
$ sudo apt-get upgrade
Upgrade to Linux Mint 17

Upgrade to Linux Mint 17

Depending on your system resources and Internet speed the upgrade process can take a while and the update manager will ask you a series of questions regarding configuration files and services restart. Answer ‘Yes‘ on all questions and select ‘Install‘ the package maintainer’s version on all configuration files.

Select Packages to Install

Select Packages to Install

Restart Services During Upgrades

Restart Services During Upgrades

Install Package Maintainers Version

Install Package Maintainers Version

6. After the Upgrade process finishes reboot your system and you will have the new version of Linux Mint installed on your box.

7. To verify it, open a terminal and run the commands from the beginning of this tutorial.

$ sudo cat /etc/issue
$ sudo cat /etc/
$ sudo cat /etc/lsb_release
$ sudo cat /etc/os-release
Verify Linux Mint Version

Verify Linux Mint Version

8. You can also run Linux Mint System Settings and open Software Sources and System Info to confirm your latest version.

Software Sources to Confirm Version

Software Sources to Confirm Version

Upgraded to Linux Mint 17

Upgraded to Linux Mint 17

According to Distrowatch website Linux Mint is the most downloaded Linux distribution from 2011 so far with more than 3700 hits on last six months, thanks to its multiple Desktop Managers (Cinnamon, MATE – Gnome2 fork, KDE and LDME version), to the fact that it focuses on Desktop platforms, outrunning by far its distro sources like Ubuntu and Debian.

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92 Responses

  1. Lee says:

    I just want my old Petra-mint16 OS back. My HD was recently replaced and I’ve been unable to reboot the backup.img I made. I was able to restore all the old packages in /var/cache/apt/archive using apt-on-cd but now am getting errors that the old Petra – Ubuntu-Saucy libs no longer exisit. I tried changing Software-Sources to different mirros but nothing seems to work. I pointed my local repositry to “deb file:/var/cache/apt/archive and ran Apt-update then it forked. Is there and easy way to restore old packages with outhitting the lib-dependancy issue?

    • Matei Cezar says:

      Try to upgrade the system to e newer version of Linux Mint! Looks like the support period for Ubuntu Saucy has expired and the official repositories had been removed!

  2. Kimberly says:

    I’m getting this error:

    Preparing to unpack …/usb-modeswitch-data_20140327-1_all.deb …
    Unpacking usb-modeswitch-data (20140327-1) over (20120815-2) …
    Preparing to unpack …/wine-compholio_1.7.41~ubuntu14.04.1_i386.deb …
    Unpacking wine-compholio (1.7.41~ubuntu14.04.1) over (1.7.22~ubuntu13.10.1) …
    dpkg: error processing archive /var/cache/apt/archives/wine-compholio_1.7.41~ubuntu14.04.1_i386.deb (–unpack):
    trying to overwrite ‘/opt/wine-compholio/bin/wine’, which is also in package wine-compholio-i386 1.7.22~ubuntu13.10.1
    Preparing to unpack …/wine-compholio-i386_1.7.41~ubuntu14.04.1_i386.deb …
    Unpacking wine-compholio-i386 (1.7.41~ubuntu14.04.1) over (1.7.22~ubuntu13.10.1) …
    Processing triggers for ureadahead (0.100.0-16) …
    Processing triggers for doc-base (0.10.5) …
    Processing 9 changed doc-base files…
    Registering documents with scrollkeeper…
    Processing triggers for install-info (5.2.0.dfsg.1-2) …
    Processing triggers for ccache (3.1.9-1) …
    Updating symlinks in /usr/lib/ccache …
    Processing triggers for initramfs-tools (0.103ubuntu4.2) …
    update-initramfs: Generating /boot/initrd.img-3.11.0-12-generic
    Warning: No support for locale: en_US.utf8
    Errors were encountered while processing:
    E: Sub-process /usr/bin/dpkg returned an error code (1)

    I’m new with Linux so I don’t know what to do. It’s gone so well up to this point.

    • Matei Cezar says:

      First try:
      sudo apt-get install -f
      sudo dpkg –configure -a

      If no success then run:
      sudo dpkg -i –force-overwrite /var/cache/apt/archives/wine-compholio_1.7.41~ubuntu14.04.1_i386.deb
      sudo apt-get autoremove
      sudo apt-get install -f

  3. Dave says:

    Very nicely done article. New to Linux, but have tried Zorin OS 9, and I like the feature that it automatically points the way to upgrade from older versions, by downloading sources, etc. I hope Linux Mint might consider this for the not so software inclined people such as myself. :-p Thank you!

  4. Rob says:

    Thank you. Worked perfectly. I hope that (17 qiana to 17.1 rebecca) works as well.

  5. AMG says:

    sed: can’t read /ect/apt/sources.list.d/official-package-repositories.list: No such file or directory

    What went wrong?

  6. MIkem24 says:

    During upgrade – the last step…. When GRUB came up to chane or install, or to see differences, I chose “D”,
    but when I exited the editor that it started, I am unable to continue the upgrade,
    and if I run sudo apt-get upgrade -f again, it get the following:
    E: Could not get lock /var/lib/dpkg/lock – open (11: Resource temporarily unavailable)
    E: Unable to lock the administration directory (/var/lib/dpkg/), is another process using it?

    How do I continue the process ?

    • Ravi Saive says:

      To fix such error, you need to delete the lock file with the below commands.

      $ sudo rm -rf /var/lib/apt/lists/lock
      # sudo rm -rf /var/cache/apt/archives/lock

      Restart the machine and try again…

  7. Steve says:

    I was using mint mate petra/saucy. I thought I would upgrade to trusty because it is lts. A lot of things (mate-settings-daemon, cairo-dock,nm-applet, etc) won’t start now with the following error:
    symbol lookup error: /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/ undefined symbol: cairo_surface_set_device_scale
    Any help out there would be appreciated! Thanks

  8. Abednego says:

    Processing triggers for hicolor-icon-theme (0.12-1ubuntu2) …

    (gtk-update-icon-cache:30354): GdkPixbuf-WARNING **: Cannot open pixbuf loader module file ‘/usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/gdk-pixbuf-2.0/2.10.0/loaders.cache’: No such file or directory

    This likely means that your installation is broken.
    Try running the command:

      gdk-pixbuf-query-loaders > /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/gdk-pixbuf-2.0/2.10.0/loaders.cache

    to make things work again for the time being.

    (gtk-update-icon-cache-3.0:30355): GdkPixbuf-WARNING **: Cannot open pixbuf loader module file ‘/usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/gdk-pixbuf-2.0/2.10.0/loaders.cache’: No such file or directory

    This likely means that your installation is broken.
    Try running the command

      gdk-pixbuf-query-loaders > /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/gdk-pixbuf-2.0/2.10.0/loaders.cache

    to make things work again for the time being.
    dpkg: libmatemenu: dependency problems, but removing anyway as you requested:
    mate-panel depends on libmatemenu; however:
    Package libmatemenu is to be removed.
    mate-menus depends on libmatemenu (= 1.6.0-1+petra).
    mate-control-center depends on libmatemenu; however:
    Package libmatemenu is to be removed.
    python-mate-menu depends on libmatemenu; however:
    Package libmatemenu is to be removed.

    Why? What’s wrong? :(

  9. Alvaro Garcia I. says:

    to block this line in the file sources.list, getdeb.list, official-package-repositories.list (###) with : ###deb cdrom:[Linux Mint 17 _Qiana_ – Release i386 20140530]/ trusty contrib main non-free

  10. Alvaro garcia Isordia says:

    for bloquear -file- with “deb” -sources.list, official-package-repositories.list-
    File “sources.list” :
    Only U Push It: ###

    ###deb cdrom:[Linux Mint 17 _Qiana_ – Release i386 20140530]/ trusty contrib main non-free

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