How to Upgrade from Debian 10 to Debian 11

Upgrade from Debian 10 to Debian 11

In this article, we will have explained the necessary steps to upgrade from Debian 10 to Debian 11. Before continuing with this tutorial, make sure you are logged in as a user with sudo privileges. All the commands in this tutorial should be run as a non-root user.

Debian 11, codenamed ‘bullseye’ was released on August 10th after nearly two years of development. It comes with a lot of new features as most of the software in this version has been updated. This is a stable release and will receive support for the next 5 years just like any other Debian stable version.

Upgrade from Debian 10 to Debian 11

Step 1. The first command will update the package lists to ensure you get the latest version and dependencies.

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade
sudo apt full-upgrade

Next, remove all unwanted packages with the following command:

sudo apt autoremove

Step 2. Replace Debian 10 with Debian 11 Repositories.

Now edit the sources.list file containing the Debian repositories:

sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list

Remove all lines and add the following lines:

deb bullseye main contrib non-free
deb bullseye-updates main contrib non-free
deb bullseye-security main
deb bullseye-backports main contrib non-free

Step 3. Upgrade from Debian 10 to Debian 11.

At this point, your Debian 10 system is ready for the upgrade. The next step is to update the repository to let the system recognize the newly added repo URLs:

sudo apt update 
sudo apt full-upgrade

Once your system has been upgraded, restart your Debian system to apply all the updates.


Step 4. Verify Debian 11 Upgrade.

Log in to the system and check your Debian version:

$ cat /etc/debian_version

Or as an alternative way by using the lsb_release command:

$ lsb_release -a
Distributor ID: Debian
Description: Debian GNU/Linux 11 (bullseye)
Release: 11
Codename: bullseye

That’s all you need to do to upgrade Debian 10 (Buster) to 11 (Bullseye). I hope you find this quick tip helpful. For further reading on Debian’s system, please refer to their official knowledge base. If you have questions or suggestions, feel free to leave a comment below.