Upgrade hell with LMDE/XFCE

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Upgrade hell with LMDE/XFCE

Postby rayandrews on Fri May 18, 2012 11:00 am

All,

So a few days ago I went to do a routine upgrade of my system and it wanted to install 1177 packages. After making a backup I let her rip and ended up with something that wouldn't boot, but somewhere along the line it mentioned Gnome 3. I don't want Gnome 3, I installed the XFCE version, if I wanted the G3 version that's what I would have installed. zerozero sez I should uninstall Gnome, but there are dozens of packages that have to do with Gnome, and I know that XFCE uses some of them. So I restored my system and thought as a first step that it might be useful to remove the 'Installed (local or obsolete)' stuff, which turned into a bit of a nightmare in itself. The biggest problem was that 'initramfs-tools' insisted on trying to remove 'linux-image-3.0.0-1-486' which is the kernel I am running! Something called 'debconf' popped up and kindly let me decline to remove my kernel, which was very nice, but that broke the uninstall of initramfs-tools. Every time I reran Synaptic trying to remove some other stuff, it tried again to remove that, tripped up over the kernel, etc. I ended up manually deleting every file on my system named '*intramfs-tools*' and that at least got Synaptic off the case. Can anyone recommend a document that explains how to do that a bit more elegantly? I mean disentagle one package from the other.

I eventually got rid of everything in 'Installed (local or obsolete)' except 'linux-image-3.0.0-1-486' which I want to keep because I like having my machine bootable -- just a little personal idiocyncracy. Is there some way to convince Synaptic that I want to keep it? Or is there some reason to get rid of that kernel? (my machine is a P5, single core about 10 years old). I'd like to finish the upgrade my machine (there are 'only' 899 packages left) but I don't want to do it one package at a time, and I don't want Gnome 3!!! I thought Clem was going to give us the option to avoid the forced upgrade to G3, so this whole thing is a bit of a downer. Is there some list of packages that trigger the G3 thing? I mean is there some way to let the updater do its thing so long as I avoid this or that package? Arch beacons but I want to stay with Mint, but not if I'm going to have G3 forced down my throat. And not if this ceases to be a rolling release.
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Re: Upgrade hell with LMDE/XFCE

Postby odo5435 on Fri May 18, 2012 11:43 am

I can empathise with you but the information provided with the upgrades was pretty clear about the change to Gnome3. From the Update Pack Info...

"If you're using Gnome please be aware that Update Pack 4 will upgrade your desktop to Gnome 3. If you don't like Gnome 3, you have the following options:

MATE: Gnome 2 was renamed, forked and is now maintained by a new project called MATE. To install MATE install the "mate-desktop-environment" package.
Cinnamon: The Linux Mint team developed its own desktop called Cinnamon. It uses the same technologies as Gnome Shell but a similar layout than Gnome 2. To install Cinnamon, install the "cinnamon" package.
Gnome2-frozen: If you want to keep Gnome 2, you can point your APT sources to "gnome2-frozen" instead of "latest" (by doing so you will basically stay at Update Pack 3)."


What the update information didn't mention was how this would impact on Xfce users.

I had similar problems when I tried to update my Asus EEE running LMDE Xfce. After the updates were downloaded all I had was a CLI prompt. My main applications (well Opera, really, cos that was the only one I tried) wouldn't run. The error message had something to do with Xserver I think. I did some research in these forums but couldn't find anything on the problem. I didn't really want the hassle of trying to nut out where things had gone wrong when some 1200 updates had been installed so, as I had my root and home files on separate partitions, I just downloaded the .iso to another machine and installed the newest version via USB.

I probably missed learning a thing or two along the way but it was the simplest and quickest way for me to get where I wanted. To be honest, though, it was not the way I had envisaged upgrading when the decision was made to run LMDE "Latest" (which I thought was tested before release).
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Re: Upgrade hell with LMDE/XFCE

Postby wayne128 on Fri May 18, 2012 6:58 pm

(my machine is a P5, single core about 10 years old). I'd like to finish the upgrade my machine (there are 'only' 899 packages left) but I don't want to do it one package at a time, and I don't want Gnome 3!!!


That sound really impossible.
and is surely out of Mint supports. Sorry :mrgreen:

I have done similar things but I change repos to SID for play. After a short while I ended up with xfce+lots of gnome3. Of course I knew this would not be supported :mrgreen:

So I thought I should go back to original state, change repos to testing, removes lots of thing in gnome related ( nautilus, etc), after a while, gnome-shell come in again. :mrgreen:


Now to my surprise when I read your posts, you stayed with official LMDE-xfce and update did that..


Well, I too have an old comp, compaq, P4 , 9yr old, single core, still running, all I wish was a xfce so that it will be snappy , I do not need nautilus as I am happy with thunar and xfce4.8 for old computer. I like to have a lean xfce there so this old box still 'runs' ( it just 'crawls' with winXP, but 'runs' with light weight distros,, but 'walks' slowly with heavy weight distros, that explains why I like xfce on it)

Eventually I remove lots of things, and had it running, dist-upgrade no trouble.
But it is not LMDE-xfce anymore. It is closer to Debian-xfce.
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Re: Upgrade hell with LMDE/XFCE

Postby rayandrews on Fri May 18, 2012 10:58 pm

[quote="odo5435"]I can empathise with you but the information provided with the upgrades was pretty clear about the change to Gnome3. From the Update Pack Info...


What the update information didn't mention was how this would impact on Xfce users.

odo,

... and that's exactly the point. If I had Gnome installed I'd expect it to be 'upgraded', but with the Xfce edition I'd expect to be safe from that. Well, maybe I need to reinstall the Xfce .iso. But I'd like Clem to know that this ain't right -- no one should be force fed Gnome 3.

wayne,

Thanks, sounds like I have few options.
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Re: Upgrade hell with LMDE/XFCE

Postby rayandrews on Mon May 21, 2012 10:25 am

rayandrews wrote:
odo5435 wrote:I can empathise with you but the information provided with the upgrades was pretty clear about the change to Gnome3. From the Update Pack Info...


What the update information didn't mention was how this would impact on Xfce users.

odo,

... and that's exactly the point. If I had Gnome installed I'd expect it to be 'upgraded', but with the Xfce edition I'd expect to be safe from that. Well, maybe I need to reinstall the Xfce .iso. But I'd like Clem to know that this ain't right -- no one should be force fed Gnome 3.

wayne,

Thanks, sounds like I have few options.


So I finally got those 'upgrades' installed. By doing it a few at a time, and fixing the breakages, and skipping a few and coming back to them latter, and rebooting a few times, and having to do a few from CLI, and having to remove a few libraries by hand, and a few other tribulations ... she's upgraded and no Gnome 3. I posted the problem on the Xfce forum and got this reply:

"I had the same problem trying to install LMDX (LMDE for Xfce) too. Tried it a couple of times and it kept on trying to be a Gnome wannabe. I finally gave up and went with Xubuntu instead."

I myself sure hope that Clem sorts this out before more Xfce users feel they have to abandon Mint. I'm looking forward to trying MATE, but please let me choose when to do it, and please don't force feed me Gnome 3. I wonder if Clem isn't trying to do too much, too fast.
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