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-   -   Is it possible to change the os while keeping the programs? (https://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/linux-newbie-8/is-it-possible-to-change-the-os-while-keeping-the-programs-4175427055/)

rayyu 09-13-2012 09:04 AM

Is it possible to change the os while keeping the programs?
 
Sorry if this is a stupid question. . .
For example, in a non-rolling distro like salix or slackware where there is a new iso every couple of months or so, is it possible to upgrade from 13.37 to whatever the next version is while keeping the programs installed?
The reason I'm asking is because I haven't really found a rolling-release distro that I liked but the huge draw for me was having only to install once and upgrade from there. However, non-rolling kinda looks good too because you can just install and not have 67 updates every day. Except it's kind of a deal breaker if I'd have to start from scratch every time I want to upgrade XD

Anyway, sorry again if this is an obvious question; I've searched already and mostly it leads me to articles explaining how to make a sepaprate /home partition, which I always do to save files and stuff. But that's not what I'm looking for XD

suicidaleggroll 09-13-2012 09:27 AM

Due to library upgrades and incompatibilities my guess is you would have more problems than if you just installed from scratch each time. Just save the install files and source for anything you install, maybe write yourself a step-by-step install guide, and it shouldn't take very long at all to reinstall all of your software.

2armz 09-13-2012 09:36 AM

There is a program out there that allows you to group many Linux distros into one desktop, but at the moment can't remember what the program is. They might have a link at the "Linux action show". I heard about it there, but haven't tried it out. But it appears that you can run different version at the same time.

rayyu 09-13-2012 10:12 AM

damn. . . I guess it's rolling release for me then XD
Since it's a hassle to have to redo my bookmarks, logins, specific settings and tweaks, desktop design, programs, and a whole lot of other stuff every few months. Oh well U^_^

suttiwit 09-13-2012 10:15 AM

Simple: no.
Unless if there is ghost for Linux so you can backup your data.

2armz 09-13-2012 10:27 AM

Well it's good practice to restart, and do it all over again. If it stays fixed, then you aren't trying hard enough to break it. ^_^

snowday 09-13-2012 10:28 AM

Hi rayyu, yes, of course, most Linux distros allow you to easily upgrade from one release to the next, keeping all of your installed applications, user documents/data, and settings. I have done this successfully many times with Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, and other distributions. :)

Of course it is still recommended to have an external backup of your data, that's just common sense. Also I do not know the specific upgrade procedure (if applicable) for Salix or Slackware as I am not a user of either of those distros.

At the end of the day, however, my preference is to back up and do a fresh reinstall each time there is a new release. It gives me a fresh clean feeling like changing my underwear. As I am a Debian user this means I spend roughly 2-3 hours every 2 years on the task. I do not consider that to be an odious amount of system administration.

suicidaleggroll 09-13-2012 10:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rayyu (Post 4779437)
damn. . . I guess it's rolling release for me then XD
Since it's a hassle to have to redo my bookmarks, logins, specific settings and tweaks, desktop design, programs, and a whole lot of other stuff every few months. Oh well U^_^

Not really, most of that stuff is stored in your home directory, so if /home is already on a separate partition that stuff should come up automatically once you install the necessary applications.

A while back I wiped the / drive of a Fedora 12 install and set up CentOS 6.3 in its place. /home was on its own RAID, so once I got into the OS, rebuilt the RAID, mounted it back at /home, and restarted, I was absolutely amazed at how much of my previous settings ported straight over. Keyboard shortcuts, browser bookmarks, shortcuts in my panel, all of my terminal settings, etc. And this is moving from a 3 year old Fedora distro to a brand new CentOS distro. Moving from one version of Slack to the next should have no problems with your settings and shortcuts copying straight over, it's just the programs and settings located outside of /home that you would need to set back up.

holdencaulfield 09-13-2012 11:59 PM

If you make a backup of /etc and keep /home on its own partition, you probably won't have many difficulties upon upgrading.

wigry 09-14-2012 06:04 AM

I've successfully upgraded from 10.0 to 13.37 using nice UPGRADE.txt and CHANGE_AND_HINTS.txt files that you find on installation folder. Works like charm so When talking about Slackware you NEVER have to reinstall an OS. Just upgrade package management tools, then GLIBC, then packages (including kernel) and remove the old ones and you are good to go.

rayyu 09-14-2012 10:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wigry (Post 4780124)
I've successfully upgraded from 10.0 to 13.37 using nice UPGRADE.txt and CHANGE_AND_HINTS.txt files that you find on installation folder. Works like charm so When talking about Slackware you NEVER have to reinstall an OS. Just upgrade package management tools, then GLIBC, then packages (including kernel) and remove the old ones and you are good to go.

O_o Really? And it would be no different from downloading the new iso and reinstalling? . . .hmmm, makes me want to check it out again XD

Thanks!

Inkit 09-14-2012 11:13 AM

I don't know about salix or slackware, but I can tell you how I did it on my Debian system. In debian we have a package manager that downloads all apps into /var/cache/apt. I just copy this entire folder into a backup system, reinstall, and then copy the entire folder back, replacing the existing folder. You do need to ensure that you open your file manager as admin or copying will throw up an error and if all the files are not copied it will not work.
After this all you have to do is enter the package manager and choose everything you want installed and click install. because all the packages are already downloaded in your system, it will only take the time to install.
I do this all the time because whenever I reinstall, I will have more than 1 GB of updates waiting for me and it will take me half a day just to download them. This way, the updates are installed including all the applications I used to have in minutes.

ratotopi 09-14-2012 01:44 PM

I don't know what you mean by os change but I use CentOS 6 and I don't have to worry about the new release as I can just give the command yum update and it will update to the latest release of the OS and all the packages installed on it without me worrying if my programs will work or not. I will have to think about the OS change only after year 2022 once the CentOS 6 life cycle comes to an end.

wigry 09-14-2012 01:52 PM

Upgrade for Slackware works between versions so you cannot go directly from 10.0 to 13.37 but you go through all the versions one-by-one:

10.0 -> 10.1 -> 10.2 -> 11.0 -> 12.0 -> 12.1 -> 12.2 -> 13.0 -> 13.1 -> 13.37

Each upgrade takes approx 20-30 minutes depending on your net connection (you have to download the files beforehand) So it is totally doable within one or two evenings.

rayyu 09-18-2012 09:47 AM

Thank you! (to everyone) If there's a way to avoid going through a fresh install and lose everything, I'll definitely check it out <3 haha, I'm glad because I really love the slackware way of doing things (even though I'm not using slackware itself. . . yet :)) as opposed to arch or sabayon XD


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