Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

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Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby flanna on Wed Nov 20, 2013 6:00 am

I would like to move from Mint 15 Cinnamon to Mint 16 Cinnamon soon as the stable release is available. However I have I have quite a few extra software items installed (incl. MYSQL, PHP, Aptana, Valeria Studio, Padre, Spider Oak, DropBox, Oracle Virtual Box etc.). I also have a MYSQL database that I use daily.
Is there an easy way to upgrade without doing a complete fresh install?
Could some kind soul let me know exactly how to make the upgrade from 15 to 16... :?
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby xenopeek on Wed Nov 20, 2013 6:48 am

flanna wrote:Is there an easy way to upgrade without doing a complete fresh install?

Easy? I'd say yes but there is a risk associated with doing it that way. When upgrading to newer versions of software and you do a somewhat big version jump (software on Linux Mint 15 only received security and bug fixes, you didn't upgrade to new features versions, so some software may be very old as to compared what is available on Linux Mint 16) it may result in some software not working right and you need to fix that. That could be just one program that isn't fully backwards compatible with the files from your older version from Linux Mint 15, or it could be some dependency problem from packages you manually installed from outside the Linux Mint repositories and that now cause issues with newer package versions on Linux Mint 16 (meaning you might not be able to upgrade, or some packages from Linux Mint 16 might need to be held back), or it could be something more critical like unable to log in to your graphical desktop.

The risk might not be big, but it's there. Of course I only know the problems from users that did this and came to the forum for help, and don't know how many more users did this and never had any problems :)

First things first: always ensure you have a good backup in place (of at least your personal files) before you attempt to upgrade. A good backup not only means you have archived some files, it also means you've confirmed the archive is extractable and indeed contains all the files you intended.

Now, to upgrade, it's really very simple. First, open a terminal and run this command:
Code: Select all
inxi -r

This will show you your full repositories configuration, showing you which repositories are configured in which file. Note the files to edit from below tip and edit those files as root (either `gksudo gedit filename` to edit with Gedit, or editing on the terminal with `sudo nano filename`). Afterwards you run the command:
Code: Select all
apt update && apt dist-upgrade

Now, which files to edit and what to change? You'll note that each line looks something like so:
deb http:/archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ raring main restricted universe multiverse

The word raring here denotes the distribution name for the Ubuntu package base used by Linux Mint 15. On any line where the word "raring" is there, replace it with "saucy". On any line where instead the word "olivia" is there, replace it with "petra". That's it.

A final word of warning: you might have added additional repositories (beyond the Linux Mint one and the Ubuntu package base ones), like PPAs or other APT repositories. In some cases you will have to do the word replace on those to, but in other cases not as there will be another distribution name there. That's all fine. The warning here is that perhaps not all repositories, especially PPAs, might already have packages for the "saucy" distribution. So you might get errors from that, saying some repository index files couldn't be downloaded (and which). It won't remove any installed packages, but it's something to take into account.
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby flanna on Wed Nov 20, 2013 7:07 am

Thanks! :D
I'll give this a try soon as Mint 16 stable is available. If is doesn't work i'll just have to do a fresh install anyway. :?
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby jcd on Tue Dec 17, 2013 4:45 am

Well, did anyone try this? Any particular problems encountered?
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby flanna on Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:29 am

Yes, I tried it. It nearly worked...

Part way through, I got asked some question that I didn't know the answer to. So it wouldn't go any further. Of course I couldn't undo what had already been done. :(

So I had to do a new install. :oops:
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby jcd on Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:39 am

I see... Thanks for replying!

I'm performing an upgrade as I write this, so I'll post what I did and how things went once it's done!
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby djk44883 on Sat Dec 21, 2013 10:44 am

xenopeek wrote:
flanna wrote:The risk might not be big, but it's there


It's never mentioned weighting the risk vs time. I'm not discounting the risk, I've encountered issues... but I've spent a lot of time tweaking and configuring multiple home computers. Doing a fresh install and configuring everything to my liking is very time consuming.

A bigger issue I have. Mint Backup seems to primarily backup up [personal] directories. I have configured server in ntp.conf added files in /etc/grub.d customed edited samba.conf (granted there will be a new version but there hasn't actually been any new settings that affect me) and other files I haven't kept track of. So, for me, and presumably others, a fresh install doesn't make sense. I'll admit to using clonzilla so I'll have a bootable system in the event of hardware failure.

I get the impression the motivation behind the fresh install is to 'force' people to back up their system. Virtually every operating system has an in place upgrade option. Linux Mint is at the top of the list for a reason, the the users decide if they want to backup and let up upgrade regularly without reinstall twice a year, please.
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby cwsnyder on Sat Dec 21, 2013 1:03 pm

@djk44883: The Linux Mint team does NOT SUPPORT in place upgrades. Their answer is to stay on an LTS version if you don't want to backup your personal files every 6 months. Then you only have to backup your files every 2 years when there is a new LTS or every 5 years when the LTS version goes into non-support. :oops:

The only supported upgrade path is to re-install from fresh installation media, which means you don't have problems with PPAs which don't get updated or software which was installed from source and never updated since the last installation, etc.
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby jcd on Sun Dec 22, 2013 2:25 pm

Even a fresh install doesn't really require much backup, once you get the hang of it. As long as one keeps his home folder in a separate directory (and he's fine with some bloat in the form of deprecated .files), it's pretty straightforward... Plus, much of the configuration of a linux system can be done in the user's home folder! Unless a major upgrade (such as the one from Gnome 2 to 3, or Ubuntu's to Unity) occurs, the conf files don't change much...

Anyway, Linux Mint's policy of fresh installs is mostly relevant to beginners. The rest are free choose a different approach.

***
Now, on the subject of the thread! I followed the instructions found here:
http://www.tecmint.com/upgrade-linux-mint-15-olivia-to-linux-mint-16-petra/

(which are identical to xenopeek's instructions, with some extra terminal magic), and everything seems to be working fine!

The upgrade process seems pretty robust to me. Even more so, considering the fact that I ran into a couple of unexpected hardware failures (not related to the upgrade process; it's just that my laptop has some issues), and I still managed to pull the upgrade! (I had to run apt-get -f install once, after my system froze during installation , and I was informed by apt-get to do so when I tried to resume! I didn't really have to remember, or even know, that myself!)

Quicknote:
Some raring packages seem to remain in the system after the upgrade, but that's probably because they didn't come up as dependencies at any point. They are automatically handled as outdated packages in future updates and installations...
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby MartyMint on Sun Dec 22, 2013 4:55 pm

djk44883 wrote:
I get the impression the motivation behind the fresh install is to 'force' people to back up their system.


You shouldn't be "forced" to backup your system.

You should willingly do it because it's common sense.
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby djk44883 on Wed Jan 08, 2014 8:27 pm

Looks like I need to install Linux Mint 13 Maya LTS to keep a stable system and upgrades infrequent.

Yes I do regular backup with cloning software so I still have a bootable system if I have complete failure - yes I test. So, for me, reinstalling my operating system twice a year to stay current is overkill. That's just my view. I had been using debian squeeze and needs upgrading. With wheezy I don't want to re-learn things with gnome 3 (my personal view) mate is great and cinamon is polished nicely. I've installed mint on my media pc's... well because it just works with little or no hassle. So I don't have a different os on every computer I'm looking to go with mint on my primary system.
-Thanks everyone
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Re: Upgrade Mint 15 to Mint 16

Postby Citricube on Wed Mar 19, 2014 6:48 pm

I recovered my password for this forum just to thank you xenopeek. Thank you, for the instructions! The one thing I will add, doing this method is pretty slow. If you're going to upgrade by re-directing the repos don't expect it to be done for a while :shock:
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