Upgrade a specific package in Ubuntu

One may upgrade a specific package in Ubuntu for various reasons. We can upgrade packages in Ubuntu using both apt (Advanced Package Tool) command-line utility as well as through graphical tool – Software Updater. We recommend you to update your packages regularly. This is to make sure you never miss out on important security updates and any added functionality. Upgrading a package through Software Updater would require you to have a desktop environment installed.

Note: Following operations would require you to have superuser privileges, in case you don’t have one then contact your System Administrator for assistance.

Upgrade a specific package in Ubuntu

Before upgrading any package, we must always update the repositories. This makes sure you always get the latest version of the package available through repositories. Hence, open the terminal and issue the following –

sudo apt update

To upgrade a specific package, issue the following in terminal –

sudo apt install --only-upgrade <package_name>

For instance,

sudo apt install --only-upgrade virtualbox-ext-pack

Also, we could selectively upgrade multiple packages. But, this may upgrade any associate packages along with it. Doing so would require you to issue the following in terminal –

sudo apt install --only-upgrade <package_name1> <package_name2> <package_name3> .... <package_nameN>

For instance,

sudo apt install --only-upgrade qemu qemu-block-extra qemu-kvm qemu-system-common qemu-system-data

Alternately, we could selectively upgrade packages through Graphical Tool – update manager (also, Software Updater).

To install the relevant package, if its not available –

sudo apt install update-manager

Now, open the Software Updater package available in Main menu of your desktop environment. It would first update the repository and then look for any updates for the packages. Thereafter, it will provide us the list of packages to be upgraded.

Herein, you can also look for Technical description (any changes made/description) about the package. Select the checkbox in front of the package you would want to upgrade. It also mentions the download size of the selected packages. And, then click Install Now.

In conclusion, we have discussed both the tools i.e. command-line tool apt and graphical-tool Software Updater, which could be used to selectively upgrade the packages in your Ubuntu distribution. Choose one as per your requirements.

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