There are still a couple of months left, but Canonical is already announcing the end of the life cycle of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS ‘Bionic Beaver’, as well as encouraging all users who are still using this version of the system to update to one with support. Preferably, to the new Ubuntu 22.04 LTS, the most recent in the long run.
It goes without saying, but Ubuntu 18.04 LTS was launched in 2018, specifically, on April 27, 2018 , a day later than expected due to a last-minute serious error that many of you will remember because of its unusual nature. Thus, in April 2023 the five years of ordinary support for each LTS version of Ubuntu will be completed, and it is over, all that remains is to update or update.
At least, for the majority of users who continue in Bionic Beaver. It should be remembered that this support extension, called Extended Security Maintenance (ESM) and which adds an additional five years, was released a year before the launch of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, starting first with Ubuntu 12.04 LTS and later reaching the following LTS versions of system as its support was ending. ESM is part of the Ubuntu Pro corporate support package.
As you can see, Extended Security Maintenance keeps each LTS version of Ubuntu alive for a long time -twice as long, to be exact- and, as an example, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS still has more than a year of support ahead; Ubuntu 16.04 LTS almost three years old; Ubuntu 18.04 LTS five; Ubuntu 20.04 LTS almost six… And the latest Ubuntu 22.04 LTS, the one recommended replacing the version at hand.
For more information, Ubuntu 22.04 LTS came out in April 2022 and will consume its five-year regular support in 2027, although it will last until 2032 thanks to the additional support provided by the Ubuntu Pro Extended Security Maintenance plan. A plan aimed at companies or professional users, mainly, although any user can take advantage of it completely free of charge.
In summary, if you are still using Ubuntu 18.04 LTS the best thing to do is to jump to Ubuntu 22.04 LTS, which is now beginning to stabilize accordingly. But you can also take advantage of the free Ubuntu Pro modality, if you prefer to keep the beaver active for a few more years. What you choose will depend on your needs. But you see getting ready to take one path or the other because time flies.