migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

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jerson
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migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

Post by jerson » Tue Dec 13, 2016 1:14 pm

Greetings

I have a few questions; some of academic importance, some are real at the moment. These relate to my current installation with which I am very pleased.

1 - I have a fully configured Lm18 Sarah working on PC1 which has 2 HDD with 4 partitions each; just one partition is LM18. Another PC2 has 1 HDD with 2 partitions of which 1 is LM18 again.
    1. What I wish to do is to replicate this PC1 installation of just the LM partition (basically all the installed stuff including my vbox) to PC2 without having to clone the partition. maybe some simple backup/restore to save all applications from pc1 and restore on pc2. Is this possible using some built-in utility like the backup tool ? Do I have to download and install all the software once again on PC2 via the software manager ?
      • Or maybe create a bootable uSb stick with the working version of LM18 and all its accessories so I can carry it over to any other pc perhaps with data persistence?(now I seem to be speaking like a geek :wink: )
      2 - On printing.
      I never understood how this works under linux. Till now, I always thought I would have to write a PDF in linux and then somehow have to take it somewhere to print. This time, I just tried to print via my connected canon all-in-one and it was up and running in a couple of minutes. Where can I find out more about the printing process in linux and how it finds which driver needs to be installed ?

      3 - what do you do when LM18 GUI freezes?
      not that I have seen it yet, but, just in case.

      Thank you for your time
      Jerson

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      jimallyn
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by jimallyn » Tue Dec 13, 2016 3:19 pm

      jerson wrote:What I wish to do is to replicate this PC1 installation of just the LM partition (basically all the installed stuff including my vbox) to PC2 without having to clone the partition. maybe some simple backup/restore to save all applications from pc1 and restore on pc2.
      Not sure what you think the difference is between backup/restore and cloning? I have used Clonezilla for this: first I backup the partition with Clonezilla, then I restore it to the new computer with Clonezilla.
      jerson wrote:Or maybe create a bootable uSb stick with the working version of LM18 and all its accessories so I can carry it over to any other pc perhaps with data persistence?
      Not sure if this is possible with Clonezilla or not.
      jerson wrote:Where can I find out more about the printing process in linux and how it finds which driver needs to be installed ?
      These FAQs may be of some help to you:

      https://wiki.linuxfoundation.org/openpr ... e/indexfaq
      jerson wrote:what do you do when LM18 GUI freezes?
      I think if you hit Ctrl-Alt-Backspace it will restart the desktop. Pretty sure this works in Cinnamon, not sure about the other desktops. I used to have a problem with my computer freezing when I had a lot of pages open in the browser, especially if they were Facebook pages. Facebook uses a lot of scripts, and they can suck massive memory and CPU. I haven't had this problem since I upgraded to 12 gigs of RAM. But what I used to do was hit Ctrl-Alt-F2 to switch to a virtual console, log in, and enter killall firefox. After killing Firefox, switch back to the GUI with Ctrl-Alt-F7 (or Ctrl-Alt-F8 on some computers) and restart Firefox.
      Image

      “If the government were coming for your TVs and cars, then you'd be upset. But, as it is, they're only coming for your sons.” - Daniel Berrigan

      jerson
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by jerson » Tue Dec 13, 2016 8:46 pm

      Thanks jim

      basically what I am saying is I have 2 identical machines with LM18 installed. One of them has all I need, other is just base version installed off the live cd. How do replicate the installed software onto the other machine so that both are identical. I am aware of partition/disk cloning - that is not what I am asking. my question is aimed at possible backup/restore to migrate all the installed applications like firefox / thunderbird / virtualbox with their settings to the other machine without me having to install all the software again on the other machine and then somehow copy the settings over. Related question - where do all my installed stuff go? Are they all in my $home directory? Once installed, is it possible to put $home on another partition to be able to backup/duplicate?

      The option of burning a live cd from my working Lm copy is a good possibility of taking my system with me where ever I go. not sure if this is possible - somethings are magically possible in linux.

      BTW : I was checking to see if the backup tool is any help. When I ask it to backup softwares, it just crashes after showing a few entries. Is this a problem?

      Regards
      Jerson

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      pfd27
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by pfd27 » Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:18 pm

      Ive never tried it but you could use the backup tool to backup the software selection on computer #1 and then restore on computer #2.
      Not sure if it would keep all your settings.
      I would set up a couple virtual machines to test it first though.

      Petermint
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by Petermint » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:05 am

      You could boot from a Linux live USB stick then rsync from the good machine to the clone. Exclude a few problem system directories.

      MySQL is the most difficult thing to copy because there is MySQL junk every. Other applications have just the software in the system directories and all your data in /home/you/.something. In nemo, you want "show hidden files" on. The Gramps application stores everything in .gramps. Some use .local/share/...

      For copying most applications, your only fight is with Linux to include hidden files in your home directory. Apache, MySQL, and similar "server" applications have customised configuration files in /etc and other places. You could use something like Meld to compare your /etc directories. Meld is still a long way from being reliable.

      Make a list of all your applications in a spreadsheet. Add their configuration and data directories as columns.

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      Lucap
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by Lucap » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:09 am

      jerson wrote:Or maybe create a bootable uSb stick with the working version of LM18 and all its accessories so I can carry it over to any other pc perhaps with data persistence?(now I seem to be speaking like a geek :wink:
      Refracta Tools - Page 4 onwards

      http://refracta.freeforums.org/linux-mi ... 81-30.html

      Will convert your Mint hardrive and all it's settings to a live image.

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      jimallyn
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by jimallyn » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:59 am

      jerson wrote:I am aware of partition/disk cloning - that is not what I am asking. my question is aimed at possible backup/restore to migrate all the installed applications like firefox / thunderbird / virtualbox with their settings to the other machine without me having to install all the software again on the other machine and then somehow copy the settings over.
      I am still not getting what you are saying about not partition/disk cloning. That is the way to backup/restore your install, including all the installed software and settings. How else would you do it?
      jerson wrote:Related question - where do all my installed stuff go?
      Most applications are installed into /usr/bin. A lot of your settings will be in a hidden folder in your home folder (/home/yourusername).
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      “If the government were coming for your TVs and cars, then you'd be upset. But, as it is, they're only coming for your sons.” - Daniel Berrigan

      jerson
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by jerson » Wed Dec 14, 2016 6:16 am

      Thank you lucap. Refracta is another distribution like puppy linux. I wouldn't want to change from Lm now. I have used puppy in the past, but never installed to HDD. This time LM is installed to HDD.

      I get the impression, it might be too much work to do what I am asking in point 1. Perhaps I will have to list all the softwares I use on PC1 and then manually install them on PC2.
      I am still not getting what you are saying about not partition/disk cloning. That is the way to backup/restore your install, including all the installed software and settings. How else would you do it?
      I would like to mimic the softwares installed on PC1 to PC2. Unfortunately for me the 'backup tool' crashes without letting me see the list of installed apps. Just flashes the list and closes.

      Is it unwise to have LM installed with just 2 partitions - one for swap and one for root? I've read recommendations of keeping /home in a separate partition. can that be done after I have installed with just 2 partitions?
      Regards
      Jerson

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      Lucap
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by Lucap » Wed Dec 14, 2016 6:22 am

      Refracta tools are separate from Refracta Linux.

      You install the Refracta tools into linux mint on your hardrive as outlined in the link for LM18 and then you can convert your Mint HDD drive to a live disk image which will be about 2gb compressed.

      Use the toram command at boot and Linux Mint will run fully in Ram.

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      jimallyn
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by jimallyn » Wed Dec 14, 2016 5:57 pm

      jerson wrote:I get the impression, it might be too much work to do what I am asking in point 1. Perhaps I will have to list all the softwares I use on PC1 and then manually install them on PC2.
      Jerson, you are not paying attention. If you clone PC1 with Clonezilla, and restore that to PC2, they will be completely identical in every way (assuming the hardware is in fact identical). If I were to do this with your PC1 and PC2, and have you try them out, you would not be able to tell me which was which. Isn't this what you want? And no, you will not have to list all the software on PC1 and install them on PC2. The clone process will have all of PC1's software, and it will all be restored to PC2.
      jerson wrote:I would like to mimic the softwares installed on PC1 to PC2.
      That is exactly what you will get if you use Clonezilla for this.
      jerson wrote:Unfortunately for me the 'backup tool' crashes without letting me see the list of installed apps. Just flashes the list and closes.
      Then don't use the 'backup tool.' Use Clonezilla.
      jerson wrote:Is it unwise to have LM installed with just 2 partitions - one for swap and one for root? I've read recommendations of keeping /home in a separate partition. can that be done after I have installed with just 2 partitions?
      I think most people install with just 2 partitions, one for / and one for swap. I have been using Linux for 14 years, and have never used more than 2 partitions. (I might try that, though, the next time I do a fresh install from scratch, just so I can say I did it, I guess.) You could create a separate /home partition after having installed with just 2 partitions, but it will not be easy, and it will require manually moving everything from your current /home folder to the new partition, and manually editing some text configuration files. I thought about doing this on my computer at one point and decided it wasn't worth the trouble. You're fine the way you are setup now.
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      jerson
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by jerson » Wed Dec 14, 2016 8:42 pm

      @jim Thankyou. I have used disk partitioning and cloning tools in the past though never clonezilla. Yes it will do exactly what I want, but, I'm afraid the hardware differences will not allow the installation to work on the second machine.

      After engaging in this discussion, I have come to realize that unless linux is capable of changing its drivers - as needed - once it is installed, copying/cloning/restoring a configuration from one machine to another may be a lot of work. Therefore, I shall evaluate the refracta tools method and maybe make a live usb kind of setup which I can carry from machine to machine. I like the VHD format which allows me to take my virtual drive to another machine with all its installed software.

      I am grateful for the contributors who helped me on this curiosity. Thank you for taking time to help a newbie - appreciate your help.
      Jerson

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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by Petermint » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:00 am

      One thing you can do across two machines is to look in syslog at the startup to find drivers in use then install the drivers on the other machine.

      Install on A. List the drivers loaded.
      Install on B. List the drivers loaded.
      Install on A the drivers loaded on B but not on A.
      Copy A to B using Clonezilla or whatever.

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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by Petermint » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:11 am

      You can copy a partition to an image then restore the image on dozens of different machines. The only requirement is to make sure the partition fits. You can use gparted to reduce the size of the partition then disks to create the image. Work from a USB stick.

      Gparted can make a new disk bootable and create a swap partition.

      Moving user data can be easier if you use a separate home partition. For Web development and similar tasks, there is a lot of system software with custom configuration outside your home directory. There are ways to configure those applications so that the configuration files are inside your home directory.

      A more common approach is to create a separate user data partition for videos or some other huge collection of data. A person with a video camera and cute kids would use SSD for / plus a magnetic disk for the 8 TB /home/you/videos. :)

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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by jimallyn » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:28 am

      A lot of people have taken a hard drive with Linux on it out of one computer and put it in another computer, and it works fine. Recently somebody on the forums was wanting to get Linux on an old laptop that wouldn't boot from a USB stick, and the DVD drive was defective, they couldn't boot from that, either. What they decided to do was take the hard drive out of the laptop, put it in another computer, install Linux on it, then put the hard drive back into the laptop. Almost always, this works fine. About the only problem I have heard of with this is if you have proprietary video drivers installed on the first computer, and the second computer has a different video system. In that case, open the Driver Manager on the first computer before making the clone, and disable any proprietary drivers. Then make the clone and restore it to the second computer. When you boot the second computer for the first time, it will use the open source drivers, then you can install the proprietary drivers on the second computer if needed.
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      jerson
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      Re: migrate fully configured Lm18 / move to another Pc

      Post by jerson » Mon Jan 02, 2017 7:43 am

      Happy New Year I'm back with an update.

      I tried various ways to migrate my fully configured machine to LM18. Nothing seemed to work right. Finally, using the Hiren Boot Cd on Windows, I found a utility called DiskGenius that could write a VMDK (VMWare disk) file. This file can be directly used in VBox.

      I had a bit of trouble getting the VMDK to boot up correctly, but the windows repair installation did the trick for me.

      Now, I have a fully configured machine running in VBox with access to all my data partitions which I mount under LM18 and then using the VB shared folders can be accessed in the virtual machine. Not just that. Using a VMDK file means the partition is not disturbed and can be booted via the BIOS time selection like before.

      This is an excellent solution since I have 2 different Win Configurations on 2 different partitions which I can use from time to time. This update is meant to help anyone else who might want to acheive something similar.

      Now, the questions :?:
      Mine is an old machine that is not well endowed. It has the following configuration
      Screenshot from 2017-01-02 17-03-06.png
      Unwittingly, I have configured Swap space to be just 1GiB. Can this be increased if I have room for it to grow?
      Any ideas on what can make the VM run faster considering this processor seems to not have a hardware VT/Hypervisor?

      Regards
      Jerson
      Regards
      Jerson

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