I'd like to upgrade QGIS from 2.8.1 to the lastest LTR version.

I'm looking for a clear explanation on how to achieve that on Windows (I'm on Windows 7). Such information is not easy to find, including on the QGIS official website that only gives details about installation.

Is it just necessary to download/install the new version or do I have to uninstall programs before that? I don't want to keep the older version alongside the new one.

  • The latest LTR version is 2.8 which is quite a jump from 1.8. I'm not familiar with upgrading QGIS versions but as there's quite a difference, personally I would suggest uninstalling the old version and download/install the new one.
    – Joseph
    Commented Apr 12, 2016 at 11:39
  • Sorry, I meant 2.8.1... I've just edited my post.
    – wiltomap
    Commented Apr 12, 2016 at 11:49
  • As far as I know, you'll have to uninstall and reinstall, that's what I have been doing. (the latest LTR version is 2.8.8, not that different from 2.8.1) Commented Apr 12, 2016 at 11:51
  • Ahh no problem! As Matthias Kuhn mentioned in his answer to this post, 2.14 will be the latest LTR version once 2.16 has been released.
    – Joseph
    Commented Apr 12, 2016 at 11:52

2 Answers 2


Here are some general notes for un-installing the two types of installs:

OSGeo Network

  1. OSGeo Network version, this version may not be un-installed from Control Panel>Programs and Features option. To un-install
  2. Run osgeo4w-setup-x86.exe (same .exe you ran to install the app), choose Advanced Install option take all defaults under Select Packages under Category "All Default" click on "Default" two times to change to "Uninstall" and run
  3. Next, in Computer delete this directory: C:\OSGeo4W
  4. Delete any Start menu> shortcut icons or folders and desktop icons
  5. Make copy of plugins directory located here C:\Users\yourUserName\.qgis2\python\plugins and then delete the .qgis2 directory. There are some system settings related to the current app that should be cleared out before installing new version. QGIS will re-create this directory automatically when you open Q.


  1. Un-install app from Control Panel>Programs and Features option
  2. Repeat step 4 and 5 noted above
  • As far as I remember, the standalone installer of the latest 2.8.x version will delete any older 2.8.y version before proceeding. 2.6.x or 2.14.x versions remain untouched.
    – AndreJ
    Commented Apr 13, 2016 at 5:59

NextGIS Installer has autoupdate tool for QGIS. The updates goes without leaving the QGIS application. After update QGIS will restart and current project will be reopened. The update process change only needed libraries and files. Usually dozen megabytes.

NextGIS Installer

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