Monday, March 22, 2010

So Distro Updates are coming soon.. time to get ready!

Now that Ubuntu 10.04 is beta and due out in a little over a month with Fedora pretty hot on their heels coming out in the beginning of May, I have to start preparing my systems for the coming upgrades.

I'll be upgrading more this time than in the past because this coming Ubuntu is a Long Term Support (LTS) release and so this is going onto the family computer too.

I have 3 systems which will be upgrading; a family desktop and two laptop hard drives.

Part of the "preparing" process is going to be figuring out the best steps in upgrading and migrating.

The Family Desktop

This one will be a little easier to upgrade because not only is the distro going to be upgraded but the actual desktop will be replaced with a "new" (used) desktop so I am afforded the luxury of being able to return to the "old" system if something really breaks!

I'll be moving from Ubuntu 9.10 to Ubuntu 10.04 LTS, and probably sticking with it until the next LTS release in 2012. Since it is the family's computer and I have my laptop, it is a little easier for me to keep it stable (read: for me to leave it alone). Plus I can test things out on my laptop to determine if the upgrade is significant enough to push past the LTS-to-LTS cycle I am trying to impose.

The new desktop will need to be as similar to the current one because I do have one user who is very visual, and needs things to be right where they expect it. The more exact it is for her, the happier she'll be and the sooner she'll be back to being up-and-running.

Success happens with happy users, not happy admins.

The other consideration is that this desktop has 2 hard drives, and the second hard drive already has Windows 7 installed on it. Now I hate the idea of having to fool around with registration keys, and system shutting down features if I don't "comply" (something I've been spoiled with Linux since it doesn't have these same "features") so it exists completely on a separate hard disk.

I'm keeping the Windows 7 in part for fooling around with it when I need to, as well as for compatibility purposes. The only downside is the Printer/Scanner/Copier I just got is because the previous owner just got a Windows 7 laptop for Christmas, and Windows 7 doesn't like this machine. Linux, on the other hand, loves it even in 9.04!

My Laptop

My laptop will be slightly more complicated but still should not be overly difficult. See, it starts with having multiple hard disks in their trays so I can slide out one hard drive and replace it with another just like an old-fashioned game cartridge.

One of my hard drives is a 60 GB hard drive which is currently running Ubuntu 9.10. The other hard drive I'll be fooling around with is an 80 GB hard drive which is the newest hard drive I have and after hearing hard drives lasting 5-10 years I've realized that this is the only hard drive that isn't near or exceeding the 5 year mark.

My 80 GB hard drive already contains a Windows XP installation which I am going to hold on to for added compatibility purposes. The other distribution I have on it is Fedora 12. That's where the complication begins.

What is going to make things slightly more complicated than just upgrading is that I want to switch the distros on the hard drive:

My Windows/Fedora hard drive will become Windows/Ubuntu 10.04 LTS and my Ubuntu hard drive will become my Fedora 13 system.

Of course I do not want to be losing all of my settings, applications and files. I will need to make sure I'm "organized" so I don't step over my own two feet and end up loosing all of the backups from one system or the other.

To help with moving things around, I'll be employing an 8 GB USB Flash drive and possibly some of the networked Server space though it is in desperate need of cleaning out at this point.

When all of this is done, then it comes time to focuse on the server, but that's a whole 'nuther story!

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