Release Guidance

This information helps you understand the DGX OS release mechanism, release numbering convention, and options to install and upgrade your DGX OS software.


Keeping your computer’s software up to date is the single most important task for protecting your system. Security related updates are available from the Ubuntu and NVIDIA repositories. Refer to Upgrading for instructions on upgrading your system with the latest software releases and the Upgrades page on Ubuntu’s Wiki for additional information.

Security updates for Ubuntu are announced on Ubuntu Security Notices (USN), which lists known Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs) for Ubuntu packages. NVIDIA’s security announcements can be found on Product Security.

Release Mechanisms

This section provides information about the DGX OS release mechanisms that are available to install or upgrade DGX systems to the latest version of the DGX OS.

The ISO Image

DGX OS is released in the form of an ISO image that includes an autonomous installer and all the software required for running AI, machine learning, and analytics applications. Basic system configuration is deferred to a setup wizard on first boot. The ISO is intended for cases that require reimaging a single system.

Updated versions of the ISO image are also released between releases that:

  • Provide critical bug fixes and security mitigations.

  • Improve the installation experience.

  • Provide hardware configuration support.

You should always use the latest ISO image, except when you need to restore the system to an earlier version.

The Linux Software Repositories

The DGX OS software, upgrades to DGX OS, and a large pool of additional software are available from software repositories in the form of software packages. Software repositories are storage locations from which your system retrieves the software packages. The repositories used by DGX OS are hosted by Canonical for the Ubuntu OS and NVIDIA for DGX specific software and other NVIDIA software.

Software packages contain the files of the respective software component or closely related components. This includes executables, configuration files, documentation, and metadata, such as dependencies.

New versions of these packages, which contain bug fixes and security updates provide an upgrade to a DGX OS release. The repositories are also updated between releases for critical bug fixes, security migitations, and additional hardware enablement. Updates for supporting a new system or a new hardware component, such as a network card or disk drive, do not affect existing hardware configurations.

System upgrades are cumulative. Your system always receives the latest package versions, which can be newer than the current DGX OS release. You cannot select which upgrades to make or limit upgrades to a specific DGX OS version by default.


NVIDIA recommends that you do not update packages individually. For example, do not run apt install <package-name>.

Release Numbering Convention

The NVIDIA DGX OS release numbering convention is <major>.<minor>. The meaning for major and minor are as follows:

  • Major releases are typically based on Ubuntu releases, which include new kernel versions and new features that might not be backwards compatible. They also include the latest releases of the NVIDIA software.

    For example:

    • DGX OS 4 is based on Ubuntu 18.04.

    • DGX OS 5 is based on Ubuntu 20.04.

  • Minor releases include new NVIDIA features, bug fixes, and security updates.

    • Minor releases deliver upgrades to the NVIDIA software stack that are backward compatible.

    • In DGX OS 4 and earlier, minor releases were typically aligned with NVIDIA Graphics Drivers for Linux releases. Since DGX OS 5, you have the option to install newer NVIDIA Graphic Drivers independently of the DGX OS release.

    • When you upgrade a system, the system remains on the installed driver release except when a driver branch reaches the end of support.

    • The ISO releases provide a snapshot of all accumulated changes. The release can include a newer LTS driver branch.

  • Important bug fixes and security updates are released between releases through the software repositories without having a release number assigned to the change.

Release Cadence

DGX OS is released twice a year, typically around February and August, for the first two years as minor releases. Updates are provided between releases and after the initial two years for the remainder of the supported duration.