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[SOLVED] Any Benefit to 'Clean Install' for Mint 19.3?

Posted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:04 pm
by B2WJ
When a new Mint version such as 19.3 Tricia has notable changes/improvements, is there any benefit to hardware/software/other by doing a "clean install" via ISO rather than the upgrade provided through the new "System Reports?" An example, to my thinking, would be if there had been some damage to the cache that's not been apparent to the user.
Thanks,
Bill

Re: Any Benefit to 'Clean Install' for Mint 19.3?

Posted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:12 pm
by Pjotr
Within the 19 series, I advise to apply an in-place upgrade. Because the underlying code base, Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, doesn't change then. The risk is therefore minimal to non-existent.

Re: Any Benefit to 'Clean Install' for Mint 19.3?

Posted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:15 pm
by JoeFootball
B2WJ wrote: ... is there any benefit to hardware/software/other by doing a "clean install" via ISO rather than the upgrade provided through the new "System Reports?"
A clean install would certainly mitigate against the challenges that some upgrades encounter, which you will find here on the forums. That said, I'd like to think that the vast majority of upgrades are successes.
B2WJ wrote: ... if there had been some damage to the cache that's not been apparent to the user.
Sure, if there's something damaged that's not apparent to the user, that could be a risk. I'm not sure how "real" that is, but I suppose it could technically occur.

Perhaps the biggest argument for a clean install is, if it puts your mind at rest, then do so. :)

For the record, I always do clean installs for my production environments. And for my not-so-production environments, I have done in-version upgrades via the Update Manager without incident. And I have full system backups in all cases.

Joe

Re: Any Benefit to 'Clean Install' for Mint 19.3?

Posted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:16 pm
by JoeBingo
Just end user observation, often when doing an upgrade rather than a clean install, the newer kernel isn't installed for one thing. Who knows what else might be "compromised". Also I've noticed in the past that the resulting OS footprint is a gig or more larger than it would have been with a clean install, so if storage space is a consideration, do a clean install.

I stopped doing release upgrades some years ago. Mint is the only operating system I use on my computers. I need it to work as it should out of the box and don't chance possible installation anomalies and conflicts by upgrading an older release with the new distro.

EDIT: I see Pjotr responded while I was composing this. I'll defer to his advice ... while continuing to do clean installs ;)

Re: Any Benefit to 'Clean Install' for Mint 19.3?

Posted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 3:11 pm
by B2WJ
Thanks, @Pjotr, @JoeFootball, for the swift and helpful explanations. Likewise @JoeBingo, and ...
JoeBingo wrote:
Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:16 pm
... often when doing an upgrade rather than a clean install, the newer kernel isn't installed for one thing. Who knows what else might be "compromised."
As I was about to reboot to activate 19.3 the Update Manager offered me the latest kernel. Seemed weird to be installing it before activating 19.3, but I applied it. Also, I don't know how Clem and his team can address this, but I suspect many who choose the automated "Tricia" upgrade without reading his team's upgrade instructions won't know about the option to install Celluloid, gnote, drawing, and neofetch. I suppose those packages come with the ISO. I also wasn't asked whether to keep or replace configuration files, so I assume those files were replaced automatically.
JoeBingo wrote:
Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:16 pm
Also I've noticed in the past that the resulting OS footprint is a gig or more larger than it would have been with a clean install, ....
Interesting. Given that I had upgraded both version and kernel, upon starting 19.3 I ran

Code: Select all

sudo apt-get autoremove --purge
Somewhat to my surprise, there was less than half a gig to clean up, with everything looking to be old kernel scraps. (BTW, "apt-get" appears no longer necessary; just "apt" will do.)