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I want to switch to 14 as easily as possible. What's the best way? Do I have to remove 13 and install 14 from scratch, or is there another way?

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As bahamat said, Mint is Debian derived, so you should

  1. update your sources.list:

    sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

  2. Change maya to nadia and precise to quantal:

Paste this into sources.list:

deb http://packages.linuxmint.com/ nadia main upstream import
deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ quantal main restricted universe multiverse
deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ quantal-updates main restricted universe multiverse
deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ quantal-security main restricted universe multiverse
deb http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu/ quantal partner
deb http://packages.medibuntu.org/ quantal free non-free
#deb http://archive.getdeb.net/ubuntu quantal-getdeb apps
#deb http://archive.getdeb.net/ubuntu quantal-getdeb games
  1. Update packages:

    sudo apt-get update

  2. Update and upgrade distribution:

    sudo apt-get dist-upgrade sudo apt-get upgrade

  3. To clean up

    sudo apt-get autoclean sudo apt-get autoremove

  4. Reboot

    sudo reboot

  5. After rebooting select desired desktop environment.

Hope it helps!

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and if you want to upgrade to LM15, use olivia instead of nadia, and raring instead of quantal – AdrieanKhisbe Jun 8 '13 at 17:52

Because Mint is Debian derived, the easiest way is to update your sources.list to use the new version of the repositories, then use apt-get (or aptitude) to install debconf and apt-get (and/or aptitude). Then dist-upgrade.

Not being a Mint user myself, I don't know what the correct sources.list should be (and 5 seconds on Google didn't reveal it) and I've obviously not tested this. But being a long time Debian user this is reasonably likely to be safe. Even still, test this yourself before actually doing it and have a back up of your data.

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