[Safely] Update an Ubuntu EC2 instance on Amazon AWS

Showstoppers - Biloxi, MS

Ubuntu 12.04.1 LTS was released and that meant it was time to upgrade my Ubuntu EC2 instances from 11.10 to 12.04.1 LTS.

When I logged in via SSH I saw the nag to upgrade and thought, “crap…the last time I did this, I destroyed my EC2 instance”. The upgrade went flawlessly this time because I created an AMI first, and after a few days I will delete that AMI and associated EBS volumes.

1) Create a backup

Create an Amazon Image (AMI) of your existing EC2 instance. If anything fails, you can simply launch the newly created AMI and re-associate your Elastic IP. (You’re using an Elastic IP right?)

2) Upgrade

When it’s finished, go ahead with the upgrade:

$ sudo apt-get update -y && do-release-upgrade

1 Comment

  1. Thanks very much for this article.. first timer here doing the upgrade.. man is it nerve wracking..

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