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I'm currently using Lubuntu 16.04 LTS . There are three options in Software and Updates app which are
updates-options

Important security updates (xenial-security) should be necessary.
It doesn't matter having Unsupported updates (xenial-backports) checked, as long as I don't explicitly install packages from backports.

What I'm unsure is, Is it safe to uncheck Recommended updates (xenial-updates)?

I don't need bugfix updates. All I need is security updates along with installable packages from main , universe sources.

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Recommended updates are, well, recommended. You can read the stable release updates policy. They fall into three categories:

  • Critical bugs such as data loss, impossibility to install, etc.
  • Updates to data files which become necessary over time, such as the timezone database, antivirus signatures, hardware support lists, etc. Some of these may be code updates, e.g. for applications that critically depend on a network protocol (e.g. web API) that has changed.
  • Less critical bug fixes to applications that other programs don't depend on (so that if the update is buggy, it won't impact other programs).

If you've never experienced any critical bug, and you don't run new hardware, and you don't use any applications that have external dependencies such as evolving network protocols, then you may be safe without the recommended updates. But even so you might encounter “time bomb” bugs that would get fixed in a recommended update (e.g. laws that change timezones, a Y2k-type bug, …).

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