Dist upgrades gone wrong
November 6, 2005
So I had decided to upgrade my Ubuntu distro to Breezy Badger as a last-ditch effort to improve my wifi problems before taking the lappy into the shop. Unfortunately, a dist-upgrade is kind of an all-or-nothing proposition. If the smallest thing goes wrong in the middle, all kinds of stuff will potentially end up not configured properly; I think this may be particularly true with Ubuntu, because they have these distro-wide metapackages (e.g. ubuntu-desktop). There’s a particularly sickening feeling you get at the moment you realize that neither your X server nor your network interfaces work any more… so you’ll be burning an ISO to re-do your distro upgrade. Read the Breezy upgrade notes first and save yourself a lot of pain and a trip to Fry’s for CD-RWs. Do as I say, not as I did!
But as Sterling pointed out in the midst of the crisis, the great thing about Linux is that it makes you feel utterly moronic for hours — and then when you finally figure out how to do things, you get to feel smart for a minute. It’s not just an operating system — it’s an emotional journey!