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!

3 Responses to “Dist upgrades gone wrong”

  1. Lloyd Dalton Says:

    I went through the same experience (kubuntu -> breezy).

    Luckily, I was able to avoid the ISO route, because my network stuff was still good. So I could do:

    sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

    If you can get your network connected again (ifconfig? dhclient?) You might be able to do the same.

    Good luck 🙂

    – Lloyd

  2. bubba Says:

    Just an apple powerbook and be done with it.


  3. Forget Ubuntu unless you are really that crazy about Gnome.

    Personally I use Xandros (www.xandros.com) which is also Debian-based. Give it a try, it has excellent Wifi ootb, just plug in your Windows drivers and away you go.

    Me personally, I prefer KDE but thats just me.

    Geoffrey


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