Raspbian GNU/Linux upgrade from Wheezy to Raspbian Jessie 8

The upgrade from Raspbian Wheezy to Raspbian 8 Jessie is a fairly simple procedure. However, a caution must be exercised as there is always a chance to break the entire system. The less packages and services are installed the more likely you will be able successfully upgrade your Raspbian Linux system.


  • Remove unnecessary packages
  • Fully upgrade your current system
  • Make a data backup
  • Although there should not be a problem to perform update via SSH it is recommended to perform upgrade directly using console

Upgrade current system

As per the above recommendation we first fully upgrade our current Raspbian Wheezy system:

# apt-get update
# apt-get upgrade
# apt-get dist-upgrade

Continue only if no errors are display by the above command chain.

Update apt sources list

# sed -i 's/wheezy/jessie/g' /etc/apt/sources.list

And comment archive repository. The result should look similar to the one below:

deb http://mirrordirector.raspbian.org/raspbian jessie main firmware contrib non-free
#deb http://archive.raspberrypi.org/debian jessie main

Upgrade to Raspbian Jessie

Once you start the actual upgrade you will be given a choice to manually restart any currently running services. Manually restart services is recommended as this give you an option to restart services selectively eg. SSH etc. Furthermore, if you are performing the update via SSH and have no physical access to your Raspberry PI make sure not to disable SSH root access.

Disable SSH password authentication for root?      NO

When ready, initiate system upgrade to Raspbian Jessie:

# apt-get update
# apt-get upgrade
# apt-get dist-upgrade

Reboot your system:

# reboot

After successful upgrade and using hostnamectl you should be able to see your current Raspbian version as Raspbian GNU/Linux 8 (jessie):

# hostnamectl
   Static hostname: pi
         Icon name: computer
           Chassis: n/a
        Machine ID: e8b0569e6af846b7b3c9911191e2da9a
           Boot ID: 273f90ee3a014119a948afa3a3aa95f3
  Operating System: Raspbian GNU/Linux 8 (jessie)
            Kernel: Linux 3.18.0-trunk-rpi
      Architecture: arm