One way to speed up the Linux package updates is to use a package mirror made available by Linode. They are hosted in all six of their data centers. Just pick a data center where your data is Linode server is located by doing the following.
Edit your sources list
sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list
Search and replace
# Replace this address http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ # with the new address http://fremont.mirrors.linode.com/ubuntu/ # you can also use this - returns round robin of all locations http://mirrors.linode.com/ubuntu/
The next time you run a Linux update, it will be significantly faster.
sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get upgrade