[nSLUG] Upgrade tools, or... (choosing a new distribution)

Mike Spencer mspencer at tallships.ca
Tue Sep 11 22:42:03 ADT 2007

"Daniel Morrison" <draker at gmail.com> quoth:

> I've yet to hose a slackware system by mixing packages or upgrading
> incorrectly.  I've done "unsupported" upgrades (skipping versions,
> e.g. from slackware 9 -> 11) and it worked fine.

I've been a Slackware user -- 6 machines -- for several years now and,
for the most part, I'm quite happy with it.  In part that's because I
usually prefer knowing what's happening at the expense of some extra
tedious mucking about over a Universal DWIM Command which usually
works but leaves me totally bewildered when it fails.

That said, I did have a bit of trouble upgrading from Slack 8 to Slack
10 because the package naming conventions had been changed and dealing
with those changes had been accomplished in the 8->9 ugrade.

I've also had some tedious dependency grovelling when installing
packages that aren't part of the distro, e.g. locating some lib, trying to
compile only to learn that to do so I must locate,  d/l and compile
some other lib(s).  Rinse and repeat, recursing 3 or even  4 levels.
Another example is old lib versions explicitly coded in some software
-- Maple V was an instance -- requireing either finding the old versions
or dicking with soft links in /usr/lib.

But in any case, I've never "hosed" a system with an upgrade, new
package or systemware mod.

I'm now using Slack 10.  I have no idea whether an upgrade to 12 will
be a PITA or will work fine.  A couple of apps have obvious bugs -- a
couple in the ImageMagick suite come to mind -- and I anticipate
seeing those fixed in Slack >= 12 but for the most part, I'm fine and
happy with the stability of my familiar 10.

The next time I do go for an upgrade, I guess I better carefully
tabulate and script all the idiosyncratic bits -- scripts, packages,
libs, configurationss, patches -- that I've put in the system tree.
Working from just a text file memo and doing it by hand has come to be
tedious and error prone.

- Mike

Michael Spencer                  Nova Scotia, Canada       .~. 
mspencer at tallships.ca                                     /( )\
http://home.tallships.ca/mspencer/                        ^^-^^

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