New Install keeping Home directory

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New Install keeping Home directory

Postby Cushie on Fri Jul 18, 2008 3:05 pm

I am running Mint Cassandra and understand a new install up to Elyssia is better than and upgrade. However I have a separate home directory with all the usual settings which I would like to keep. How should I proceed to install and keep my existing /home? Are there any other directories or settings I should backup for future use?
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Re: New Install keeping Home directory

Postby msuggs on Fri Jul 18, 2008 5:34 pm

The easy way is choose manual partitioning during setup and electing to mount but not format the home directory. This may cause some problems though with config files between releases and you won't get a clean desktop.

I usually just backup the whole home directory and then copy across what I need once I have a nice default setup :)

hth
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Re: New Install keeping Home directory

Postby Cushie on Fri Jul 18, 2008 6:11 pm

Thanks for that hth, the document files are no problem to copy over but it is the settings that I am most concerned about, it must be a pain to copy individual files over.
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Re: New Install keeping Home directory

Postby kenetics on Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:52 pm

I put all my /home hidden files in a folder and call it oldconfig. Then do a manual install without formating the home partition. I guess you could leave the config files you want to keep out of the folder. At least you will retain you docs and everything not in the oldconfig folder.
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Re: New Install keeping Home directory

Postby Cushie on Sat Jul 19, 2008 6:41 am

Thanks 'kinetics' I also like that idea too, just about to start!
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Re: New Install keeping Home directory

Postby linuxviolin on Sat Jul 19, 2008 7:55 am

Perhaps you may want to do a backup of the list of all packages installed on your system, so you can easily reinstall them.

e.g open Synaptic and choose File menu then 'Save selections under...' For reinstall select File then 'Read selections...' and select the file previously created.
Thus all the packages that you had previously installed will be selected for reinstall, just click on 'Apply' to reinstall them. Simple... :idea:

P.S= My system is in french, so I hope I have made a good translation of the menus but anyway it's so easy to find... :lol:
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Re: New Install keeping Home directory

Postby MagnusB on Sat Jul 19, 2008 9:56 am

linuxviolin wrote:Perhaps you may want to do a backup of the list of all packages installed on your system, so you can easily reinstall them.

e.g open Synaptic and choose File menu then 'Save selections under...' For reinstall select File then 'Read selections...' and select the file previously created.
Thus all the packages that you had previously installed will be selected for reinstall, just click on 'Apply' to reinstall them. Simple... :idea:

P.S= My system is in french, so I hope I have made a good translation of the menus but anyway it's so easy to find... :lol:

There is a much better way described in this excellent How to (sorry for shameless self promoting). My recommendation is to export the package list to a text file, then go through it manually, and remove all packages with lib in the name (libraries), or even better, remove everything you know you didn't install.

As for keeping configuration files, most are set in /home, but some applications use other directories as well (for instance X, /etc/X11). I know how I want my system configured, so I do it manually every time I do a fresh install (I delete all hidden folders in my /home partition). In theory it shouldn't be a problem keeping your old settings, but theory and practice is two different things. If you want to keep them, don't move or remove any hidden folders in your /home partition, or do as one suggested, but all hidden folders in a separate folder, then recover each folder one by one, reboot after each to see if they produce any errors. My method could be called über paranoid (deleting all configs), the last method can be called paranoid (recover one by one), and just keeping /home is the most used one...
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Re: New Install keeping Home directory

Postby linuxviolin on Sat Jul 19, 2008 11:09 am

MagnusB wrote:There is a much better way described in this excellent How to

Maybe but the Synaptic way is easy and it works quite well... And for an inexperienced user it is perhaps easier to use and/or perhaps less intimidating. :wink:

MagnusB wrote:My recommendation is to export the package list to a text file

This is exactly what Synaptic done. It is even possible to make a shell script ("Generate package donwload script") that allows you to reinstall your packages quite simply.

But your How To is quite good and we can also encourage to follow it! :D
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