Originally Posted by PTrenholme
Doing it your way seems to require ...
Does this really seem either easy or flexible?
I don't think any of that is required. It seems easy and flexible if done reasonably.
You simply create a separate /home partition and use it normally. When it comes time to upgrade, allow the installation program to reformat the other partition(s) if you want, but not home. Don't let the installation program create a new /home, tell it which one to use. When you create the non-root user, the home directory will already exist.
You'll have to make sure you specify the same UID, but it'll be easiest to just accept the default (501) in both cases.