Sunday, January 04, 2009

Upgrading Mandriva

Over the past three days I'm upgraded two machines to Mandriva 2009. I did this using the urpmi command line method.
The first machine was running Mandriva 2007.1 so I expected this might be a bit complicated, but it went a lot more smoothly than I thought. I needed to invoke the commend a couple of times once I'd worked around various problems - usually by manually removing problematic packages which I didn't really use (mostly -devel ones). I made sure to add --noclean to the command so that the upgrade packages weren't removed and a few hours later - with little supervision - I was booting 2009.1
The other machine had Mandriva 2008.1 - I wanted to test out the 2007.1 installation first as the second machine is the mail/sshd/web server and so I thought this would be a lot smoother. I initially copied all the rpm's from the first machine (left because of --noclean) into /var/cache/urpmi/rpms to the second so that a lot of extra downloading was avoided.
Unfortunately I encountered a number of issues:
  • The KDE3 files (the upgrade initially takes you to a kde3 installation) were put in /opt and my /opt just wasn't big enough - post installation all but 33M of the 0.5 gig partition is used mostly by /opt/kde3 - make sure it's big enough for you or make /opt/kde3 a soft link to somewhere larger!
  • Then on reboot, I got errors about the file system not being recognised(!), /etc/fstab looks rather different and is a bit intimidating if you've just been dumped out of the boot process and the partitions it's complaining about fail to fsck (file system check). Eventually I commented out the lines and rebooted. Tried various options to get the partition to mount - then with a bit of help from alt.os.linux.mandriva I got the pointer that 2009 uses the libata kernel module which only allows 15 partitions, I have 20 partitions (some of which were for other Linux distros. I then rebooted with a live Knoppix cd, created a /dev/sda3 primary partition and copied most of the stuff inaccessible to Mandriva over into it. Rebooted and now Mandriva has most of my data again!
    I wonder why diskdrake can't report what the problem is when you try to mount /dev/sda16 rather than claiming it needs formatting(!)
  • I initially couldn't get any sound with amarok 2 - I'm running blackbox rather than kde/gnome and to get sound I'm going to have to start pulseaudio in my startup file
But I'm now happily running the upgraded installation!

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