Not quite, probably, but you definitely should back-up anyway. (Those removable USB 2.0 disk-drives are terrific for this.)
When you install a new version of Linux, what's basically going to have to happen is that all of the old system materials are going to be removed and an entirely new system installed ... all of this taking place while the system is booted from a CD-ROM. Indeed, the simplest way to "get 'er done" is to move everything of value off to an external disk, then just do a "clean install from scratch." I say that because of the rather large jump you are making.
What you do not want to do is to "kinda sorta do it halfway" while you are still running the old system. There are a lot of subtle dependencies that need to be changed "all at once," and your CD-ROM based installer (your choice) will do all of that correctly.
Last edited by sundialsvcs; 03-09-2006 at 06:46 PM.