Firstly thank you to everybody that contributes to Elementary OS, what a great product.

Please help, I have limited bandwidth which is costly where I am. I have tried numerous ways of disabling the automatic background downloading of updates:

  • I've uninstalled the unattended-upgrades package and Appcenter
  • I've removed all the files that seem to be related to Apt from the /etc/cron.daily | .weekly and .monthly folders.
  • I've removed /usr/lib/apt/apt.systemd.daily
  • I've run: systemctl stop apt-daily.timer systemctl disable apt-daily.timer systemctl daemon-reload

Still when I run apt upgrade I notice that package updates have been downloaded, they are not installed, but the "Need to get xx MB/xxx MB of archives" message reflects that the archives are being downloaded somehow in the background.

I realise that this is a good practice, but it costs me money and I need to be able to update only when convenient.

Thank you so much in advance.

1 Answer 1


On Ubuntu 16.04, (on which is based Loki, so maybe it works) you could use

$ sudo systemctl mask apt-daily.service
$ sudo systemctl disable apt-daily.timer
$ sudo systemctl disable unattended-upgrades

and then update/upgrade manually when you see fit

Check more here: https://www.hiroom2.com/2016/05/18/ubuntu-16-04-auto-apt-update-and-apt-upgrade/

  • So this will stop all updates unless done manually? Will it also prevent update checks and notifications? Aug 7, 2017 at 14:21

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