How to Find Linux Distribution Release Name and Version

There are many commands in Linux to get the same information and one such command is the lsb_release, which is used to get the Linux distribution-related information such as OS name, code name, release information.

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In some Linux distributions, the lsb_release command will be available to use and in some distributions, you have to install it, as this command is part of the LSB-core package.

Check Linux Distribution Information

To check if the lsb_release command is installed run the following command.

$ which lsb_release


In some distributions like Ubuntu, this command is already available to use but you will get the following error when you try to use some flags.

$ lsb_release -v

No LSB modules are available.

Install lsb-core in Linux Distributions

To fix this you need to install the lsb-core package. Depending upon the distribution you are using run the following commands to install the lsb-core package.

------- On Debian/Ubuntu ------- 
$ sudo apt-get update 
$ sudo apt-get install lsb-core
------- On Arch/Manjaro -------
$ pacman -Syu lsb-release
------- On RHEL/CentOS -------
$ sudo yum update
$ sudo yum install redhat-lsb-core
------- On Fedora -------
$ sudo dnf update
$ sudo dnf install redhat-lsb-core
------- On SUSE -------
$ sudo zypper update
$ sudo zypper install lsb-core

Get Linux Distribution Information

Once installed, try to run the lsb_release command again.

$ lsb_release -v
Check Linux OS Version
Check Linux OS Version

To get the list of available options you can refer to the man page or "-h" flag.

$ man lsb_release
$ lsb_release -h
lsb_release Help
lsb_release Help

To check the description, about your distribution use the '-d' flag.

$ lsb_release -d
Check Linux OS Description
Check Linux OS Description

To check the version information using the '-r' flag.

$ lsb_release -r

Release: 20.04

Every distribution comes with a code name. For example, Ubuntu 20.04 comes with the name “Focal Fossa”. To get the name use the ‘-c’ flag.

$ lsb_release -c

Codename:    focal

You can get all the information by using the '-a' flag.

$ lsb_release -a
Check Linux OS Information
Check Linux OS Information

If you look at the output so far it is in key-value pair. You can just display the value alone by using the '-s' flag.

$ lsb_release -i

Distributor ID: Ubuntu

$ lsb_release -is


That’s it for this article. The lsb_release is a simple command to get information about your distribution.

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