Upgrading LMDE (from UP8 to “Betsy”)

The upgrade path is now open. LMDE 1 “Debian” users can upgrade to LMDE 2 “Betsy” by following this tutorial:


As always, make sure to read everything and don’t hesitate to connect to the IRC while performing the upgrade.

One important note among the warnings: Make sure to disable Romeo prior to upgrading. Cinnamon 2.6 and MATE 1.10 will hit it very soon, they’re not fully stable yet. If you want to test them, it’s better to enable Romeo post-upgrade so they don’t interfere with the upgrade.


  1. Thanks Clem, I know a lot of hard work has gone into this, the result is awesome! I just upgraded LMDE1 in VirtualBox and had no issues. I followed all your instructions, the only moment that made me freak was installing GRUB, but I ticked all available options (as advised if in doubt), and that went fine.

    Other than that, as far as I can tell so far, no problems whatever, so in a day or two I’ll upgrade my machine 🙂

    Thanks again for all your wonderful work!


  2. I tried Mint LMDE 2 and I experienced a bunch of bugs. Is this the same version that we suppose to upgrade to for LMDE 1 users? If that’s the case I won’t update to LMDE 2.

    Edit by Clem: Hi Raul, it is the same. We’ll announce an “end of life” for LMDE 1 eventually though, most likely for the end of the year 2015.

  3. Hi,

    Thank you for the super work!

    Following the tuto, you tell us to upgrade the distro… but when installing from the .iso, the distro seems not to be upgraded (apt dist-upgrade ask me for 303Mo to install)…
    Is it normal?

    Edit by Clem: Yes, there are new updates every day, the ISO will only ever be fully up to date for a couple of minutes/hours/days 🙂

  4. I’m just an ordinary user and in the last 5 years or more, I’ve been alternating my main distro between Debian and Linux Mint until I found LMDE1 (I just loved the fact that I could keep my system up-to-date without having to go through all those steps to get a fresh version after every N months).

    After knowing that LMDE2 would be released and, eventually, LMDE1 would lose its support, well… I was almost ready to go back to Debian. But then, I saw this post and I’m so glad that I’ll be able to continue using most of the LMDE1 “ready to go” resources that once made me choose LMDE instead of Debian (I didn’t check Debian 8 yet).

    Thank you, Clem and everyone involved in this project 🙂

  5. Thanks for all the hard work, Clem and Team!
    Tried LMDE2 both at home and at work, but with clean installation and then moving old data and settings to /home, and everything works fine.
    Why do I love LMDE? Because it’s what I’m calling ‘Debian with a human face’ =) It has all the power of Debian and also a lot of customizations for everyday use. It’s powerful. It’s robust. It’s flexible and nice ^_^
    LMDE is the best distro ever!

  6. One complaint – I can’t choose between Betsy and 17.X Xfce! Both install perfectly, run smoothly and have all one could need. So I did the obvious: I installed two 500 GB drives in my Dell Vostro 1700 laptop and boot to the one I’m in the mood for. Installing NVidia drivers in Betsy was easy but after installation, Skype didn’t work.

    Bottom line – any Mint distro works and works well. But I lean towards Betsy.

  7. Hi, I got no answer in irc and I searched topics in the forum but I couldn’t find any hint. My problem is that after upgrading to LMDE2 wine doesn’t work anymore. I had no issues in LMDE1. I have a 64 bit box. Are there issues at the moment concerning wine in LMDE 64 bit?

  8. @zanfi – I just installed wine on a vanilla (more or less) LMDE2 in virtualbox (the upgraded Betsy RC). The install (via synaptic) was okay. Doing wine –version in the terminal, it shows wine 1.6.2 is installed, wine folder is in usr/share – but nothing in the menu, so as far as I can see, no way of starting wine.

    Again, this was a fresh LMDE2 in VB, so I’m not sure what will happen when I upgrade my host LMDE1, where wine is working at the moment (except no sound), but if this actually is a bug which wioll also affect the upgrade of a working wine version, I’ll probably wait with my upgrade until there’s a fix.

    Edit by Clem: Hi, apparently it’s an issue with the menu item: http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=238&t=193994

  9. If I have upgraded a few packages from the Debian testing repos (Qt 5, Git) how would that affect the upgrade? No core packages have been updated.

    Edit by Clem: It “should” be fine.. since UP8, the “testing” you used”, and now “betsy” all pointed to Jessie at different moments in time.

  10. @mike77 – Ok, you cloud run in terminal winecfg and see what happens. Afterward, try to install an app. from terminal; cd to folder wahere the .exe is and run wine name_of_app.exe.
    There I get always errors.

  11. Thanks for the link, Clem – however, to the best of my understanding, wine seems not to be working on LMDE2. I installed all the missing mono runtime stuff, but can’t install any programs on wine. Telling an exe file to install using ‘wine’ does nothing.

    ‘sudo winecfg’ gives me this output:

    cat: /root/.wine/system.reg: No such file or directory
    /usr/bin/winecfg: 32: exec: winecfg.exe: not found

    I have wine running on LMDE1 at the moment and fear that if I upgrade to Betsy, wine may be broken. (I could still run wine on a Mint17 VB install should I need it, but I’d prefer being able to run it on my host machine.)

  12. I’ve installed LMDE2 from scratch but for the sake of curiosity, what is Romeo?
    I don’t see that in Synaptic.

  13. Reviewed the “Upgrade from LMDE 1 to LMDE2” tutorial. In the Introduction it lists the assumption “You are not using Romeo (if you are…).

    I don’t know what Romeo is. Tried searching everywhere for packages (Help link [Yelp], the current User Guide PDFs, whatis, locate, man pages, Package Manager [Synaptic], Software Manager, Search engines [duck-duck-go, google]. As I use MATE, tried my Cinnemon VirtualBox installations looking into the same things, plus the Applets. I have checked so many possiblities in the last few hours (I like the challenge and it gets me to exploring what I don’t know).

    QUESTION: How do I really know I don’t have Romeo?

    BTW, there are 2 Step 6’s listed, “Step 6 – Checks” & “Step 6 Reboot”.

    Am looking forward to updating my Alienware M11X and 3 other netbooks to LMDE2. LMDE2 and LM17_1(Betty) are amazing implementation of MATE. So very much better than the Ubuntu-Mate release.

    Edit by Clem: “inxi -r” lists your repositories. If you don’t see “romeo” in there, you’re ok 🙂 You can also reduce the output to occurences of “romeo” by typing “inxi -r | grep romeo”

  14. HI Clem

    I’ve a simple question

    Can I get LMDE2 without upgrade the previous kernel?

    Thank you

    Edit by Clem: The upgrade will install a newer kernel but should also keep the old one installed. You’ll then have both 3.16 and 3.11 installed and should be able to switch back to 3.11.

  15. @zanfi – It seems I’ve solved the great wine puzzle. It’s the i386 stuff that is missing and has to be installed. Actually, it wasn’t me who solved it, I found instructions for Debian Wheezy and applied it to Betsy. I now have wine showing in the menu, and clicking on an exe file installs the program just as it should. This is what needs to be done:

    1. Completely remove wine (including the .wine folder from the home directory). Anyway, that’s what I did, perhaps it isn’t necessary.

    2. install wine again:
    sudo apt-get install wine

    3. sudo dpkg –add-architecture i386

    4. sudo apt-get update

    5. sudo apt-get install wine-bin:i386

    It will install a ton of dependencies, but at the end, you have a working wine install.

  16. @mike77 Thanks, I tried on a 32bit laptop and it works. If I’m home I’ll try on a 64bit machine and let you know.


  17. In step 3 I get these errors. Any suggestions?

    Some packages could not be installed. This may mean that you have
    requested an impossible situation or if you are using the unstable
    distribution that some required packages have not yet been created
    or been moved out of Incoming.
    The following information may help to resolve the situation:

    The following packages have unmet dependencies:
    dpkg : Breaks: cups (< 1.7.5-10~) but 1.6.4-2 is to be installed
    modemmanager : Breaks: network-manager (< but is to be installed
    ppp : Breaks: network-manager (< but is to be installed
    E: Error, pkgProblemResolver::Resolve generated breaks, this may be caused by held packages.

    Edit by Clem: Hi Pete, try “apt install -f”. If you can’t solve the issues, remove the problematic packages, take a note of them and re-add them post-upgrade.

  18. Thanks Clem and LM team! My upgrade went smooth (LMDE Mate). Only a couple of issues (solved): upgrade LMDE1>LMDE2 turn on compositing, but if you have it turned off because you have installed another compositor (Compton, in my case), the two compositors conflicts and generate strange behaviours on desktop. Just turn off the “default” composer. Another issue is about grub not configuring and not showing kernel 3.16 after the upgrade. Solved here: http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=234&t=196438

  19. because I am not a book learner I need to be walked through it by a live person so is their anyway I can get a phone number so you can walk me through this process and i have other questions thank you Deanna

    Edit by Clem: That’s ok. Try to seek help on IRC so people can guide you through it as you’re doing it.

  20. @Pete: If you did a copy and paste from Line 3, change the dash in front of to a double-dash like this: sudo dpkg –add-architecture i386

  21. oops, bad post:
    @Pete: If you did a copy and paste from Line 3, change the single dash in front of add-architecture to a double dash.

  22. Hi Clem, upgrade was almost perfect, but with one problem:
    After doing update-grub, the Linux version info in the grub menu is missing. What’s now shown in the grub menu is:

    LMDE 2 MATE 64-bit (/dev/sda3)
    LMDE 2 MATE 64-bit (/dev/sda3) — (recovery mode)
    LMDE 2 MATE 64-bit (/dev/sda3)
    LMDE 2 MATE 64-bit (/dev/sda3) — (recovery mode)
    Windows 7 loader (/dev/sda1)

    This makes the selection very confusing.
    I find that the problem is in /etc/grub.d/10_linux

    Before I do update-grub, the 78th line of this file was
    title=”${description}, ${version} (${GRUB_DEVICE_BOOT})”

    After update-grub, this line becomes
    title=”${description} (${GRUB_DEVICE_BOOT})”

    I tried to add “, ${version}” back, and then do update-grub.
    Then it worked, the version info shows up in the grub menu.

    However, if you take a look at /etc/grub.d/10_linux once more, “, ${version}” is missing again.
    This means, the next time you do update-grub, the Linux version info will be lost again.

    This looks like a bug to me.
    Do you know how to fix it? Thanks!

    Edit by Clem: Yes, we’ll get that fixed in an update. Thanks for looking into this.

  23. @acrophoenix: 10_linux is one of the files that gets rewritten on every boot by mintsystem/debian-system-adjustments tandem. This is a feature, though it’s somewhat obscure for most users 🙂

    For this particular case we simply need to update our version of 10_linux.

  24. Hello,

    Many thanks for this procedure. An suggestion: adding cleaning procedure
    – apt autoclean
    – cleaning local or obsolete packets (in Synaptic)
    – cleaning old kernels
    – cleaning duplicate items in the startup applications (see ctrl panel)
    – …

    Thanks in advance.

  25. Great update. It went very smoothly, with one detail: my screen saver has disappeared.

    As suggested at turned it off before doing the upgrade. After the upgrade, there is no ScreenSaver icon in the Preferences, and the screen saver is still turned off.

    I do have the ‘cinnamon-screensaver’ and ‘cinnamon-settings-daemon’ packages installed (and I use the cinnamon desktop).

    Any suggestions? Thanks.

    Edit by Clem: Does cinnamon-settings screensaver work?

  26. Hi, Clem. Thanks for confirming that this blog is the official way of posting suggestions to future Mint releases.

    Here are a few more suggestions:
    1. For Nemo View: Let us set default by folder. I want my Pictures folder and its subfolders will have Icon view; I want all other folders outside of Pictures to have list view.

    2. Please create an official dark/black theme. I’ve been using an unofficial theme and it doesn’t look good.

    Would love to hear your thoughts on these suggestions.

  27. I’ve tried installing LMDE 2 (Not upgrading) on UEFI and even though I formatted the UEFI partition to fat32 and everything, it still said I needed to use a UEFI partition to install LMDE even though I already set one up…

    LMDE really needs an auto-partition option IMO.

  28. Hi!
    thanks a lot for this upgrade path.
    One problem for me : when i boot on new kernel inux-image-3.16.0-4-amd64, i have a black screen with some colored pixels, no more.

    All work fine with the live CD.
    Booting with linux-image-3.11-2-amd64 is still OK.

    My graphic card:
    00:01.0 VGA compatible controller: Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. [AMD/ATI] Trinity [Radeon HD 7480D]

    What’s wrong ? would you have any suggestions ?

    Many thanks for any help.

  29. Yes, Justin, you are right, because Debian installer have auto-partition option. Anyway, i think pure Debian is much more better, than LMDE2 IMHO

  30. Removing “splash” option in the grub boot menu solved my black screen problem. I don’t understand why …
    All is great now, and much faster compare to LMDE1 !

  31. I have simple problem. After the upgrade, the system of mine bootable only from recovery mode. The U8, no Romeo, etc was correct, so my question is: what did I wrong?

  32. To Clem: I get this

    cinnamon-settings screensaver
    Python module
    Could not find bluetooth module; is the cinnamon-control-center package installed?
    Loading Screensaver module
    __init__ took 384.052 ms

    It does not bring the Screensaver module though, it brings the Screen locker configuration. In there I cannot set how long before dimming the screen, how long before suspend, etc.

    BTW, the cinnamon-control-center package is installed.

    Edit by Clem: It’s hard for me here.. I’m working on 2.6 right now and Power Settings have changed a lot in 2.4 and even more in 2.6 🙂 also, cinnamon-screensaver is “only” a screen locker, it’s only with 2.6 onwards that it gains support for xscreensaver hacks and webkit screensavers. Check the Power Management settings instead. Alternatively, give 2.6 a try, it’s in Romeo already: http://segfault.linuxmint.com/2015/05/early-access-cinnamon-2-6-in-romeo/

  33. After following the upgrade procedure and running all system updates afterwards, upon rebooting I select the 3.16 kernel. After logging in and opening System Monitor, I am informed that I am running LMDE 1 on kernel 3.11.

  34. wait a minute… I thought the whole point of LMDE is that we don’t *ever* have to upgrade… that upgrades are done entirely by the system itself???

  35. @nevart01. That the way it is. You upgrade by doing ‘apt dist-upgrade’, and the system upgrades all the necessary packages, instead of erasing your system and copying a new version. (do a backup nonetheless…)

    LMDE was lagging in upgrades so you get a big lump of them and it is called LMDE2.

  36. LOVE LMDE! However, since I bought this new laptop (Clevo P770ZM) I, sadly, cannot get LM to run. Even tried the nomodeset xforcevesa — no love so looks like I’ll have to wait for a future kernel version that may address this. Admin has my email addy if anyone can point me in a direction to fix this issue.

  37. first of all: THANKS for all your work and the upgrade path to “LMDE 2”!!!
    after upgrading i’ve almost have the same “problems” as @43 Ed:
    almost the same graphic-card as Ed(Radeon HD 7xxx).
    after GRUB i see at the right half(only) of my desktop the kernel is booting up, then some (strange)columns of digits, next ending up on a blank screen with some network activities(network card) and then nothing more until i press the reset-button of my pc(not even terminal/console wont work on that point to get some information)
    fallback-mode with kernel 3.11-2 works fine – actually writing this on that kernel with LMDE 2)
    Ed’s solution @45 wont work neither – tried some GRUB-options, at (old)kernel 3.11-2 i get a splash-screen, but not at the (new)kernel 3.16.
    maybe someone can sort this out – until then i will use the (old)3.11-2 kernel with no other choice 😉
    thanks in advance for any help and keep up this great work!

  38. MANY THANKS Monsta
    @60 “did the trick” – replaced “uversafb…” with “drm radeon…” and everything works fine(so far) with kernel 3.16.0-4 🙂

  39. @Monsta/60: Thank you so much, this “trick” saved me too. System didn’t boot after I did the updates on may 29th – strange… but solved 🙂

  40. I noticed that I get prompted about my ownCloud client wanting to access the “default” keyring upon each boot; that didn’t used to happen. I don’t really need the extra security so is there a way to allow the ownCloud client automatic access? I think it may be related to a change in webDAV mount policy; there was something about that that popped up during the upgrade process.

  41. GRUB issue: the upgrade process ends up reinstalling grub-pc. The defaults don’t include the “splash” screen and I’m finding that adding the “splash” option in /etc/default/grub and updating via ‘sudo /sbin/update-grub’ causes the bootup process to fail; basically end up with just the desktop background image displayed and an unresponsive system. I do have another LMDE2 system that I did a clean install on so I can just copy over the grub stuff from it but it would be nice not to need to do that.

  42. Followed the Upgrade tutorial and it has mostly gone well. One thing that is mucked up is the system boots to an unresponsive state if the “splash” option is set in /etc/default/grub :


    Switching to ..=”quiet” allows the system to boot successfully. Initially I thought the 32bit option was the problem, however uninstalling grub-pc and installing grub-efi-amd64 doesn’t fix anything. I may try reinstalling grub2 via the LMDE2 LiveDVD, however I kind of like the non-splash boot-up..

  43. @Kym: just a follow-up to my previous post. Out of curiosity I did a fresh install to a separate partition on my desktop system – none of the previously mentioned GRUB splash screen issues have occured. Makes me think something got left out of the distro-update mix. I didn’t have many system tweaks so will probably just migrate my stuff over to the fresh install partition – which works very well BTW – big thanks to the LMDE crew!

  44. This desktop Compaq has an Intel display controller.
    Using LM 17.1 Xfce the display is fast.
    Using LMDE2 Mate the display is very slow.
    How / where can I update the display driver?

    description: VGA compatible controller
    product: 82845G/GL[Brookdale-G]/GE Chipset Integrated Graphics Device
    vendor: Intel Corporation
    physical id: 2
    bus info: pci@0000:00:02.0
    version: 01
    width: 32 bits
    clock: 33MHz
    capabilities: pm vga_controller bus_master cap_list rom
    configuration: driver=i915 latency=0
    resources: irq:16 memory:f0000000-f7ffffff memory:fc400000-fc47ffff

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