Ubuntu – Ubuntu Server 18.04 apt-get Fails


My Ubuntu Server 18.04 system, while it continues to work, has become unable to apply any updates. I'm not aware of any system change that I made that could be the culprit.

What can I do to fix this? I've tried autoremove, purge, etc.

Here is typical output but any apt command produces a similar error:

# apt-get upgrade
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
Calculating upgrade... Done
The following packages will be REMOVED:
The following packages will be upgraded:
  libcephfs2 librados2 ssh-import-id
3 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 1 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
1 not fully installed or removed.
Need to get 0 B/3,065 kB of archives.
After this operation, 8,281 kB disk space will be freed.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] y
(Reading database ... 149817 files and directories currently installed.)
Removing linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic (4.15.0-22.24) ...
update-initramfs: Deleting /boot/initrd.img-4.15.0-22-generic
Searching for GRUB installation directory ... found: /boot/grub
Searching for default file ... found: /boot/grub/default
Testing for an existing GRUB menu.lst file ...

Could not find /boot/grub/menu.lst file. Would you like /boot/grub/menu.lst generated for you? (y/N) /usr/sbin/update-grub-legacy-ec2: line 1101: read: 
read error: 0: Bad file descriptor
run-parts: /etc/kernel/postrm.d/x-grub-legacy-ec2 exited with return code 1
dpkg: error processing package linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic (--remove):
 installed linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic package post-removal script 
subprocess returned error exit status 1
Errors were encountered while processing:
E: Sub-process /usr/bin/dpkg returned an error code (1)

Thanks to all for the responses. Followed suggestions below. Can't seem to clean it up via apt / dpkg. Here is output:

# sudo update-grub
Generating grub configuration file ...
Found linux image: /boot/vmlinuz-4.15.0-22-generic
Found initrd image: /boot/initrd.img-4.15.0-22-generic
Found linux image: /boot/vmlinuz-4.15.0-20-generic
Found initrd image: /boot/initrd.img-4.15.0-20-generic

# sudo dpkg --purge linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic
dpkg: dependency problems prevent removal of linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic:
 linux-image-generic depends on linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic.
 linux-modules-extra-4.15.0-22-generic depends on linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic | linux-image-unsigned-4.15.0-22-generic; however:
  Package linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic is to be removed.
  Package linux-image-unsigned-4.15.0-22-generic is not installed.

dpkg: error processing package linux-image-4.15.0-22-generic (--purge): 

dependency problems – not removing
Errors were encountered while processing:

Best Answer

  • I am still unclear on why I experienced this issue, but it seems a missing grub /boot/grub/menu.lst file was causing apt / dpkg updates to fail. So I created an empty file.

    sudo touch /boot/grub/menu.lst
    sudo update-grub2

    All good. Then proceed with updating the system:

    sudo apt update
    sudo apt upgrade
    sudo apt autoremove --purge

    Along the way, there will be a warning that the current menu.lst file is different than the package maintainer's version. Select the option to install the package maintainer's version, and then the rest of the update and cleanup completes successfully. Will see how the next kernel upgrade goes, but problem is solved for now.

    Thank you to all who contributed suggestions and help!

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