How To Check Ubuntu Version

Check Ubuntu Version

In this tutorial, we will show you how to check the Ubuntu version from the command line. Checking your Ubuntu version is essential for several reasons. First and foremost, it ensures software compatibility. Certain applications and drivers are designed to work with specific Ubuntu versions, and running incompatible software can lead to instability and performance issues. By knowing your Ubuntu version, you can make informed decisions when installing new programs or updating existing ones.

Moreover, staying current with system updates is crucial for maintaining a secure and bug-free operating system. Ubuntu releases regular updates that address security vulnerabilities, fix bugs, and improve overall performance. By checking your Ubuntu version, you can determine whether you need to update your system to the latest release or if you’re already running the most current version.

Troubleshooting issues is another important reason to check your Ubuntu version. When seeking support from the Ubuntu community or official channels, providing accurate version information helps others understand your system configuration and provide targeted solutions. This saves time and effort in diagnosing and resolving problems.

Lastly, knowing your Ubuntu version is essential when planning system upgrades. Ubuntu releases new versions every six months, with long-term support (LTS) versions available every two years. By checking your current version, you can determine when it’s time to upgrade to a newer release and take advantage of the latest features, performance improvements, and security enhancements.

This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step check Ubuntu version.


  • A server running one of the following operating systems: Ubuntu 22.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.
  • It’s recommended that you use a fresh OS install to prevent any potential issues.
  • A non-root sudo user or access to the root user. We recommend acting as a non-root sudo user, however, as you can harm your system if you’re not careful when acting as the root.

Check Ubuntu Version

The command line is a powerful tool for managing your Ubuntu system, and checking your version is no exception. Ubuntu provides several command-line methods to retrieve version information quickly and easily.

Checking /etc/issue file

The /etc/issue file contains a message or system identification text that is displayed before the login prompt. On some Ubuntu systems, this file may also include the Ubuntu version number. To check your Ubuntu version using the /etc/issue file, run the following command in a terminal:

$ cat /etc/issue
Ubuntu Jammy Jellyfish \n \l

To obtain a Ubuntu release number check content of /etc/lsb-release file:

$ cat /etc/lsb-release 
DISTRIB_DESCRIPTION="Ubuntu Jammy Jellyfish

Checking the /etc/os-release file

Another way to check your Ubuntu version is by examining the contents of the /etc/os-release file. This file contains key-value pairs that provide information about the operating system, including the version number. To view the contents of this file, run the following command in a terminal:

$ cat /etc/os-release 
VERSION="22.04 (Jammy Jellyfish)"
PRETTY_NAME="Ubuntu 22.04"

Using the lsb_release command

The lsb_release command is a standard tool for displaying distribution-specific information, including the Ubuntu version. To check your Ubuntu version using lsb_release, open a terminal and run the following command:

$ lsb_release -a
No LSB modules are available.
Distributor ID:    Ubuntu
Description:    Ubuntu Jammy Jellyfish (development branch)
Release:    22.04
Codename:   Jammy Jellyfish

Using the hostnamectl command

The hostnamectl command is primarily used to manage the system hostname, but it also provides information about the operating system, including the Ubuntu version. To check your Ubuntu version using hostnamectl, run the following command in a terminal:


The output will display various system details, including the operating system name and version. Look for the “Operating System” line to find your Ubuntu version. For example:

   Static hostname: ubuntu-desktop
         Icon name: computer-desktop
           Chassis: desktop
        Machine ID: 1234567890abcdef1234567890abcdef
           Boot ID: 1234567890abcdef1234567890abcdef
  Operating System: Ubuntu 22.04.2 LTS
            Kernel: Linux 5.8.0-58-generic
      Architecture: x86-64


Checking your Ubuntu version is a simple yet essential task for maintaining a stable, secure, and up-to-date system. By regularly verifying your Ubuntu version, you can ensure compatibility with software applications, stay current with security patches and bug fixes, and easily troubleshoot issues when they arise.

Throughout this guide, we’ve explored various methods to check your Ubuntu version using the command line. Whether you prefer the terminal or the desktop environment, you now have the knowledge and tools to quickly determine your Ubuntu version number.

Remember to keep your Ubuntu system updated to the latest release or LTS version to benefit from new features, performance improvements, and security enhancements. By staying informed about your Ubuntu version and keeping your system up to date, you can enjoy a smooth and reliable computing experience.

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r00t is a seasoned Linux system administrator with a wealth of experience in the field. Known for his contributions to, r00t has authored numerous tutorials and guides, helping users navigate the complexities of Linux systems. His expertise spans across various Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, CentOS, and Debian. r00t's work is characterized by his ability to simplify complex concepts, making Linux more accessible to users of all skill levels. His dedication to the Linux community and his commitment to sharing knowledge makes him a respected figure in the field.
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