AE2100A wrote: I actually upgraded the motherboard and the cpu. The CPU is now an Intel i5 3570K. The old cpu was an Athlon II X2 250.
Okay, that makes more sense now.
AE2100A wrote:Since the problem with the fallback seemed to be resolved by completely re-formatting the hard drive, that is where my expectations differed from what I had seen for instructions on upgrading. I was under the impression re-formatting would not be required, therefore, I kept trying to make it work without.
Seems clear that something you tried to restore from the backup conflicted with the graphics driver. Generally speaking, if you are not having graphics problems now you will likely be fine from here on out as long as you don't re-import what caused the problem or change graphics drivers.
I don't know how the backup program you used works, but if you have the ability to pick and choose which files to restore then you will be able to safely use it for restoring documents, pictures, etc. But pick those specific folders. If just telling program to restore the entire /home/username directory then it will also pull in all kinds of configuration files that are stored there as well. Sometimes those work fine with the next version; other times not so well. That might have been the problem.
For that reason, what many people do is just import (or copy over) the data files and let the new installation start fresh with everything else. Others do something similar by keeping all data files on a completely separate partition (or drive) and just sym-link it to the new /home directory. Another good idea is to keep a list of any extra packages (programs) that you typically install that don't come with the default Mint installation. Then, when upgrading you just do the install, do initial updates, then install the extra programs from your list. It only adds another 20-30 minutes or so to your conversion time, but you end-up avoiding a lot of unnecessary headaches from config files that may not work the same way on the newer software packages.
A full backup of your system is a good thing to have. If you ever accidently break your system, such a backup is perfect for getting you up and running again -- using that same set-up. But when changing versions of your OS it's probably better to be more selective of what gets imported from the old one.
Hope this makes a little bit more sense.