Thank you for those who have time to answer me. I have an Ubuntu 16 web server with Nginx (and several modules), PHPfpm, MySQL and other installed software. Hosting: DigitalOcean Droplet.

I'd like to upgrade everything - OS and all installed software (I'd like to have PHP 7.2, lates Nginx version and so on).

I have read that it is not recommended to update everything by hand with sudo apt-get dist-upgrade - but it is better to deploy a new machine with updated OS and reinstall everything. I'd like to know if there's a method / software / system that allows you to re-install all the same software and modules but in an updated version? Or do I have to sign up all the installed siftware and do it all by hand?

I tested with sudo apt-get dist-upgrade - but it's very hard to get a working environment.


Without a lot more details it is very hard to recommend a migration or an in-place upgrade. But getting a list of installed packages (to install them on another system) is easy:

The apt tool on Ubuntu 14.04 and above makes this very easy.

apt list --installed

Alternatively, simply use

dpkg -l

Using this list you can reinstall you packages on a new system almost all in one.

  • Thank you bjoster, what kind of detail would help? – EVE Milano Jun 13 at 6:29
  • Your installed software, configuration, dependencies, compatibility, modules and so on. This would be too big for one post here. There is no general answer to migrate vs. upgrade, this depents completely on your configuration and usage. – bjoster Jun 13 at 10:13

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