About dist upgrade

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About dist upgrade

Postby Husse on Fri Feb 01, 2008 6:56 am

There have been a number of people (sometimes desperately) looking for help in the forum after they had done a dist-upgrade. So I've become "allergic" to it, and always advice against it. As it has been recommended a couple of times lately I thought I'd summarize the pros and cons.

Basically never do a (sudo apt-get) dist-upgrade even if you are told by Clem :)
Well, not until you have checked a few things.

To explain this I'll make a brief description of the different commands in this area

apt-get update
This updates your list of available packages, but apart from that it does not change anything

apt-get upgrade
This reeds the above mentioned list and upgrades the files you already have

apt-get dist-upgrade
Does the same as upgrade, but it also adds files you do not have, even if it could cause a conflict and removes files that are no longer in the list of available packages or causes conflicts, regardless of if they are dependencies for other files.

The commands must of course be preceded by sudo, in Daryna and later you can use just apt and you will be asked to give your password.

The commands are "stupid" as they work on files, or rather packages, not on applications so you can see that dist-upgrade has the potential to hose your system, but it is necessary on occasion.

And now to the conclusion
If you have an up to date system, and no other repositories enabled than in the standard sources.list
and the repositories of something you want to update (could be the Romeo repo) then it's probably safe to do a dist-upgrade
Or - first apt update and apt upgrade, use the system some time to see that it's OK and first then apt dist-upgrade.
And if you wonder why I recommend this it is to catch possible errors from the upgrade before venturing into a dist-upgrade (which, as stated, will do an upgrade as well).

Addenda, not necessary to read :)
When you've read this you may understand why we did not want people to press the "Update to version 7.xx" in the Ubuntu update manager. This downloads a new sources.list with the repos of the version mentioned and then does a dist-upgrade....
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Caraibes on Wed Feb 06, 2008 3:19 pm

I guess you can now count me in the desperate people...

I happily ran Mint 4.0 until I did an innocent "apt-get update & apt-get upgrade"

Since then, MintUpdate doesn't connect anymore, and the Flash Plugin doesn't work anymore in Opera (in Firefox, it also disappeared, but it was easy to re-install with the FF wizard).

I guess I should have waited for the MintUpdate app to warn me for any valuable update...

-What would be the best way to re-install Flash for Opera ?

Thanks in advance !
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Husse on Thu Feb 07, 2008 6:49 am

I don't know much about Opera but I think it must have some way to handle plug ins - remove and add there. I don't know about mintUpdate.... I have not heard that something would break it (or just about anything) lately
And I think this underpins my advice to do a apt upgrade ans see how it goes for a couple of days before the dist-upgrade
As you did both at the same time you don't know which one did it.
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Caraibes on Thu Feb 07, 2008 7:06 am

Thanks for your answer.
As of the MintUpdate, it seems the servers were down yesterday (feb6), but up again, so it was not related.
As of my only remaining little issue, the Flash plugin in Opera, I don't know... To be honest, I just came back to Firefox as my main browser, and I verified in my Fedora partition, Opera plays Flash. There must be an easy way out... Obviously, what caused the issue was the Flash plugin-non free upgrade, as Opera came straight from the Mint Software Portal, already configured, in a working condition, so the upgrade broke that balance. No big deal...
Anyway, that all boils down to the fact that your first post is very right... From now on, I'll just wait for MintUpdate to handle things...
(however, if there are any Opera guru around, don't hesitate to post a way to get Flash up and running again ;) )
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Husse on Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:06 am

I don't think our servers were down yesterday, but they are under constant attack by hackers so a short downtime now and then seems unavoidable....
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Caraibes on Thu Feb 07, 2008 11:02 am

I just want to update my feedback about the Flash-Plugin and Opera.

It now works, as I updated to Opera 9.50b (from the Opera website).

I also did:
Code: Select all
sudo cp /usr/lib/flashplugin-nonfree/libflashplayer.so /usr/lib/opera/plugins


I took my informations from here:
http://ubuntuforums.org/archive/index.php/t-644075.html

PS: from now on, I'll stick to MintUpdate, no more "apt-get update & apt-get upgrade"

;)
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Caraibes on Thu Feb 07, 2008 11:25 am

As of Opera, I will however only use it as a second browser, and stick to Firefox as my main, due to the persistent Flash Plugin instability in Opera... It works, but it crashes often...
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby GoustiFruit on Tue Feb 12, 2008 2:15 pm

Flash plugin 9.0.148 also has problems with Firefox but it should work with Opera; the Opera team even provided a fix to Adobe/Mozilla to help them make the plugin work again in FF :roll:
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby g0lrk on Tue May 13, 2008 6:36 pm

Husse wrote: I don't know about mintUpdate.... I have not heard that something would break it

Well I don't know what's happened to my update, the icon at the bottom of the screen is 'broken' meaning there is no internet yet I am on the internet OK?
When I first turn the machine on it checks as normal and says there is updates, I click it but then it breaks!
That I am aware I have done nothing to cause this so any suggestions please?
Thank you.
Kevin.
p.s. Sorry about posting on the end of someone else's post.

EDIT: just realised the bit I am talking about I hope it is called mint update and not something else, sorry!
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Husse on Tue May 13, 2008 7:39 pm

g0lrk wrote:
Husse wrote: I don't know about mintUpdate.... I have not heard that something would break it

Well I don't know what's happened to my update, the icon at the bottom of the screen is 'broken' meaning there is no internet yet I am on the internet OK?
When I first turn the machine on it checks as normal and says there is updates, I click it but then it breaks!
That I am aware I have done nothing to cause this so any suggestions please?
Thank you.
Kevin.
p.s. Sorry about posting on the end of someone else's post.

EDIT: just realised the bit I am talking about I hope it is called mint update and not something else, sorry!

I don't really remember why I wrote that anymore
You could have this problem
http://www.linuxmint.com/wiki/index.php ... e_programs
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby nobitacu on Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:10 am

So... let me get this straight... Each time a new version of Linux Mint comes out, for example, the next one, Linux Mint 7, I'll have to do a full clean install again as updating my current Linux Mint 6 to 7 might ruin it? Hmmm... while I'm fine with that, I rather not... since it takes an entire day to reconfigure the entire OS to the way I like it... Maybe I'm just confused about this whole updating this.
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Husse on Fri Mar 06, 2009 8:11 am

You can upgrade alright, but you can't use dist-upgrade indiscriminently (damn - how is that word to be spelled really?)
For each new version we will release an upgrade tool
dist-upgrade is something special and used with the right repositories it's not dangerous but with the wrong ones it can ruin your Mint ....
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Fred on Fri Mar 06, 2009 8:34 am

Let me try to say the same thing Husse said, in a different way, and see if that helps anyone.

Mint is not Ubuntu. But it is based on Ubuntu and does use the Ubuntu repos. Ubuntu uses the "dist-upgrade" option to go from one version to the next. This works for Ubuntu most of the time, reasonably well. But even for Ubuntu it isn't 100%. Since Mint isn't Ubuntu, using their upgrade option/path is problematic at best. You can be pretty much assured that at some points in the cycle Ubuntu's dist-upgrade will break Mint badly.

This is part of the price we pay for using Ubuntu's repos. Just remember, dist-upgrade is set up for Ubuntu, not Mint. Mint doesn't have a clean upgrade path in the Ubuntu repos.

I hope this helps a little. :-)

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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby nobitacu on Sat Mar 07, 2009 3:00 am

Ah, thanks, now I'm understanding this better. I wanted to know better about it because I've really fell in love with Linux Mint, and this is now the full-time/only OS that runs on my wife's computer, and she also loves it (many days, I've been using her computer more than my Macbook, which runs os x haha). I was running Ubuntu 8.10 before on her computer, and there's always seem to be some issues no matter how many times I've tried to get it fixed to have it working perfecty. With Linux Mint 6, after some configuring and compiling, everything is PERFECT, everything works PERFECTLY, all software runs PERFECTLY, everything is just PERFECT, and this is the first time I can truly say that when running a Linux OS. However, if I need to do a clean install with each new release, then I guess I'll do it just because it'll be worth it, however, if the update tool that releases with each Linux Mint release does a great job updating without having to do a clean install, that would be great too. Could anyone please further explain in more details on how the update tool works, and what it does to help with the update process? How did it fair in the past updates?

Thanks.
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Husse on Sat Mar 07, 2009 7:20 am

Could anyone please further explain in more details on how the update tool works, and what it does to help with the update process? How did it fair in the past updates?

First off - there's no need to upgrade just because a new version arrives. After some time the need arrives when you don't get updates any more
We are still working on this, and there will be metapackages for the different versions (there still aren't for all editions)
The upgrade tool is a kind of metapackage (and more :)) and it has only been around for update from Elyssa to Felicia but it seems that it has worked fine mostly - I see almost no problems from this upgrade (I think not even a handful posts about it)
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby nobitacu on Sat Mar 07, 2009 10:15 am

Husse wrote:
Could anyone please further explain in more details on how the update tool works, and what it does to help with the update process? How did it fair in the past updates?

First off - there's no need to upgrade just because a new version arrives. After some time the need arrives when you don't get updates any more
We are still working on this, and there will be metapackages for the different versions (there still aren't for all editions)
The upgrade tool is a kind of metapackage (and more :)) and it has only been around for update from Elyssa to Felicia but it seems that it has worked fine mostly - I see almost no problems from this upgrade (I think not even a handful posts about it)

Ahhh... Thanks, that's great to know. =)
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby hardbop200 on Fri Jul 06, 2012 2:21 pm

Husse wrote:The commands are "stupid" as they work on files, or rather packages, not on applications so you can see that dist-upgrade has the potential to hose your system, but it is necessary on occasion.


Hi, I'm new to Linux Mint, coming from being a Debian user for the past almost 10 years (but they are all the same, aren't they? or maybe cousins...). Even though this post is really old, I thought it would be helpful to the newbies to have some reference material to read on the subject:


...and if you don't read anything else, read this:


Hope this is helpful.

Josh
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby maciimacii on Mon May 13, 2013 2:47 am

dist-upgrade also seems to blow away the Nvidia driver in case anyone is interested viewtopic.php?f=59&t=132665 and a reinstall of the Nvidia driver is needed, at least it was needed on my Mint 14 system.
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby Lumikki on Mon May 13, 2013 5:41 am

So apt-get update and upgrade can be used.
But apt-get dist-upgrade can't be used safely.

So I assume this mean only safe way to make Mint distribution upgrade is make new clean istallation?
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Re: About dist upgrade

Postby zerozero on Mon May 13, 2013 6:29 am

Lumikki wrote:So apt-get update and upgrade can be used.
But apt-get dist-upgrade can't be used safely.

So I assume this mean only safe way to make Mint distribution upgrade is make new clean istallation?

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