Ubuntu Server to Ubuntu Pro in-place upgrade now available in public preview
Published Aug 17 2023 10:01 AM 4,718 Views

(Updated November 14, 2023) Ubuntu Server to Ubuntu Pro in-place upgrade is now generally available.


Ubuntu Server is one of the most popular Linux distributions in the cloud. While many Azure customers are happy with Ubuntu Server as a free, community-supported distribution, Microsoft recommends you consider Ubuntu Pro for enhanced support from Canonical, including live kernel patching and extended security updates for more than 25,000 packages for 10 years. Customers may also benefit from switching to Ubuntu Pro to continue receiving support on images that have reached the end of support (Ubuntu Server 18.04 reached end of support on 31 May 2023).


Today, in collaboration with Canonical, we are making it even easier to adopt Ubuntu Pro with the new support for in-place migration without the need to redeploy your VM or schedule a maintenance window. Azure is the first cloud to offer in-place upgrade from Ubuntu Server to Ubuntu Pro with zero downtime, saving you time and resources and minimizing disruption.


"Through our strategic partnership with Azure, we demonstrate our shared dedication to delivering robust cloud solutions that prioritize security, compliance, and longevity. This partnership streamlines operations and makes the adoption of open-source software on Azure straightforward and effortless" - Alex Gallagher, VP of cloud.


You can convert your Ubuntu Pro via command line (CLI) in a few simple steps. As an example, run the following with the Azure CLI:


# The following will enable Ubuntu Pro on a virtual machine

az vm update -g myResourceGroup -n myVmName --license-type UBUNTU_PRO


And the following commands in the instance that you have converted:

sudo apt install ubuntu-advantage-tools

sudo pro auto-attach


You can check that Ubuntu Pro is enabled on your instance by running:

pro status -all --wait




Note the “Subscription: Ubuntu Pro” and that both “esm-infra” and “esm-apps” services

have a status of “enabled”.


You can also use the --license-type UBUNTU_PRO option shown above during VM creation (az vm create) for a new instance with Ubuntu Pro or a new instance with Ubuntu Pro enabled from launch (on Ubuntu 16.04 and 18.04 you will also need to run the in-instance commands above).


Please note that you will be charged by Microsoft for Ubuntu Pro as part of the Preview. Visit the pricing page for more for info on Ubuntu Pro pricing.


Combined with the recently announced enhanced security awareness through Azure Guest Patching Service (AzGPS), Ubuntu users on Azure now have a comprehensive system to identify Ubuntu instances running older releases that would benefit from Extended Security Maintenance plus a straightforward mechanism to attach Ubuntu Pro to gain access to it.


Get Started


Visit our documentation to get started with upgrading from Ubuntu Server to Ubuntu Pro on your existing Azure Virtual Machines. 

You can also read Canonical’s blog to learn more about the benefits of Ubuntu Pro.



Version history
Last update:
‎Nov 14 2023 11:36 AM
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