This is a simplified version of the means to work around this problem:

Step 1:
sudo sed -i 's/COMPRESS=lz4/COMPRESS=gzip/g' /etc/initramfs-tools/initramfs.conf

Step 2:
sudo update-initramfs -u

Step 3:

Now I wonder whether someone has already tried something other than gzip? 
Because initramfs.conf mentions no less than six options:
# COMPRESS: [ gzip | bzip2 | lz4 | lzma | lzop | xz ]

Apparently gzip is slower than lz4, which might slow the boot process by
several seconds. One of the other alternatives might be faster.

Of course I could test that myself, but I'm too lazy today, so I'm
hoping somebody else has done the footwork already....

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  initramfs unpacking failed

Status in initramfs-tools package in Ubuntu:
Status in linux package in Ubuntu:

Bug description:
  "initramfs unpacking failed: Decoding failed",  message appears on
  boot up.

  If I "update-initramfs" using gzip instead of lz, then boot up passes
  without decoding failed message.


  However, we currently believe that the decoding error reported in
  dmesg is actually harmless and has no impact on usability on the

  Switching from lz4 to gzip compression, simply papers over the
  warning, without any benefits, and slows down boot.

  Kernel should be fixed to correctly parse lz4 compressed initrds, or
  at least lower the warning, to not be user visible as an error.

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