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Old 03-16-2010, 11:10 PM
Isaac Dupree
 
Default on rolling release / reinstallation

On 03/16/10 14:12, David Rosenstrauch wrote:

On 03/16/2010 01:58 PM, Thayer Williams wrote:

Welcome aboard and glad you're getting things sorted out. Once you
have used a rolling release distro, everything else just seems silly.
Reinstall every six months? No thanks!


I enjoyed the 6-month reinstalls... for a while. They reminded me how my
system was set up ; to make backups ; etc.



When I hear about issues people run into when upgrading to, say, the
latest version of Ubuntu, my thinking is usually some combination of:

1) "What's an OS upgrade?"

2) "What's an OS version?"


true. and on the occasion that Ubuntu breaks something in a stable
upgrade, it's awful (although I'm not sure this ever actually happened
to me).


I still reckon it's useful to reinstall Arch every few years, as "/"
gets cluttered with old layouts, .pacnew files, miscellaneous stuff from
de-installed packages, packages that are accidentally still installed
due to upgrade sequences or forgetfulness, enabled daemons that are no
longer part of the mainstream Linux stack (e.g. I hear HAL may be slowly
going out of fashion), new advice in the Official Install Guide that you
haven't checked in ages, new filesystem formats (or at least, making a
new filesystem eliminates any fragmentation in the old one), decaying
personal knowledge about how Linux works (due to complacency, if it's
all still working, or just not having an all-in-one chance to get a "big
picture")...


Just don't delete your old "/" until a while after the new one is
working, if you can manage it.



3) "If you were running Arch, you wouldn't be running into so many bugs
on upgrade ... because you'd never wind up upgrading so many packages
all at the same time."


yes and no. Workarounds are easier, but need to be done more often than
once every six months. It was nice to be able to do upgrades during my
school-vacation-time rather than when I have a paper due shortly
(there's ALWAYS a paper due, or an e-mail to get back to, at my college..)



4) "You're still running into *that* bug? That was fixed in Arch
*months* ago!"




-Isaac
 
Old 03-17-2010, 12:07 AM
Robert Howard
 
Default on rolling release / reinstallation

I've done the ill fated -Syu right before a project deadline. Something in
the update broke mdraid and my system wouldn't boot until I booted from
livecd to redo the -Syu. I think maybe my mirror was syncing when I was
updating and my packages were mismatched.

Never update when facing a deadline.

On Mar 16, 2010 8:10 PM, "Isaac Dupree" <ml@isaac.cedarswampstudios.org>
wrote:

On 03/16/10 14:12, David Rosenstrauch wrote:

> On 03/16/2010 01:58 PM, Thayer Williams wrote:
>
>> Welcome aboard and glad you're getting things sorted out. Once you
>> have used a rolling release distro, everything else just seems silly.
>> Reinstall every six months? No thanks!
>>
>
I enjoyed the 6-month reinstalls... for a while. They reminded me how my
system was set up ; to make backups ; etc.

When I hear about issues people run into when upgrading to, say, the
> latest version of Ubuntu, my thinking is usually some combination of:
>
> 1) "What's an OS upgrade?"
>
> 2) "What's an OS version?"
>

true. and on the occasion that Ubuntu breaks something in a stable upgrade,
it's awful (although I'm not sure this ever actually happened to me).

I still reckon it's useful to reinstall Arch every few years, as "/" gets
cluttered with old layouts, .pacnew files, miscellaneous stuff from
de-installed packages, packages that are accidentally still installed due to
upgrade sequences or forgetfulness, enabled daemons that are no longer part
of the mainstream Linux stack (e.g. I hear HAL may be slowly going out of
fashion), new advice in the Official Install Guide that you haven't checked
in ages, new filesystem formats (or at least, making a new filesystem
eliminates any fragmentation in the old one), decaying personal knowledge
about how Linux works (due to complacency, if it's all still working, or
just not having an all-in-one chance to get a "big picture")...

Just don't delete your old "/" until a while after the new one is working,
if you can manage it.

3) "If you were running Arch, you wouldn't be running into so many bugs
> on upgrade ... because you'd never wind up upgrading so many packages
> all at the same time."
>

yes and no. Workarounds are easier, but need to be done more often than once
every six months. It was nice to be able to do upgrades during my
school-vacation-time rather than when I have a paper due shortly (there's
ALWAYS a paper due, or an e-mail to get back to, at my college..)

4) "You're still running into *that* bug? That was fixed in Arch
> *months* ago!"
>



-Isaac
 
Old 03-17-2010, 07:01 PM
"Joe(theWordy)Philbrook"
 
Default on rolling release / reinstallation

It would appear that on Mar 16, Isaac Dupree did say:

> I enjoyed the 6-month reinstalls... for a while. They reminded me how my
> system was set up ; to make backups ; etc.

I've got a slight difficulty with that... I've been a multi-boot guy for a
long time. It started because sometimes I couldn't get the cd burner
working in the same distro as the soundcard, on my old decrepit (now defunct)
desktop. Then one day I, (or some upgrade) borked my bootloader, {I think it
was lilo at the time...}, And I had to try to use a rescue cd... Yeah right! I
didn't know to type /usr/bin/mc instead of mc which wouldn't have helped
anyway because it turned out that rescue disk didn't have mc... {Without which I
have a hard time navigating the file system. (Why a non-gui rescue disk wouldn't
include mc is beyond me...)} Worse I didn't know which partition was which. And
being an extreme klutz with any rodent based control system, I'm excruciatingly
dependent on the keyboard shortcuts my fingers are already used to... And
unfortunately almost none of them match the default global shortcuts of any window
manager or desktop I've tried to date... Thus the gui rescue/live cd wasn't any easier.

I'm never comfortable unless I've got at least 3 fully configured
and personalized linux installations, from different distros, so that it's
very unlikely I'll have to use some rescue or live cd that my fingers don't
already know where to find things, or that I won't be able to use my Email
to seek help...

There are actually quite a few non-standard configurations built into my personal
~/ user file system. Such as (I don't use a /home partition because each distro may
have different versions of software that may have fits over incompatible
~/.{somethingrc} files.) Instead I have "user owned" personal partitions
mounted at places like ~/mail ~/images etc...

But the keyboard shortcuts alone make reinstalling a distro a bit of a nightmare to
me. I mean it's not like very many desktops/window managers will let me set my global
shortcuts by editing a config file when that desktop isn't actually running. (e16 is
the only exception I've found so far, and e17 took that nice human editable config
file away... For a while I could force feed my keybindings to e17 with something
called enlightenment_remote. (thanks to a bash script that somebody else wrote
to use it to extract configuration settings into an output bash script consisting of
a list of enlightenment_remote commands to restore them. And the keybinding
section could be used on a different version of e17 (Until the e17
developers decided that the gui tools now included enough utility to stop
supporting the underling code that enlightenment_remote depended on...)
And then there's the application shortcuts...

And did I mention that just as I'm not comfortable with having only one
distro on my PC, I'm also have never been happy with just one
desktop/window manager on any installed distro (at least not since kde4
chased me away from kde...) currently I like XFCE as a back up to e16 & e17
in part because it's fairly easy to pump in the shortcuts via pasting into
the add shortcut input box snippage from my e16 bindings.cfg file.

Actually every time I have to do this I wind up spending so much time
reconfiguring the new install just to get it to the point where I can
stand to use it that for at least a week, my Lady is in danger of
forgetting what I look like.

> Workarounds are easier, but need to be done more often than once
> every six months. It was nice to be able to do upgrades during my
> school-vacation-time rather than when I have a paper due shortly
> (there's ALWAYS a paper due, or an e-mail to get back to, at my
> college..)

That makes me think... I'm new to the rolling release concept.

So I'm guessing that these "workarounds" happen whenever a "pacman -Syu"
leads to breaking something... (Which means that I probably should only
do an "pacman -Syu" when A) I've got time to test all my stuff.
AND B) I've got time to look for a workaround that I hope someone else
already figured out...)

My question is how often would you recommend doing a "pacman -Syu" to avoid
having so many "workarounds" that you feel like it might have been easier
to reinstall????

--
| ~^~ ~^~
| <?> <?> Joe (theWordy) Philbrook
| ^ J(tWdy)P
| \___/ <<jtwdyp@ttlc.net>>
 
Old 03-17-2010, 07:26 PM
Loui Chang
 
Default on rolling release / reinstallation

On Wed 17 Mar 2010 16:01 -0400, Joe(theWordy)Philbrook wrote:
> So I'm guessing that these "workarounds" happen whenever a "pacman
> -Syu" leads to breaking something... (Which means that I probably
> should only do an "pacman -Syu" when A) I've got time to test all my
> stuff. AND B) I've got time to look for a workaround that I hope
> someone else already figured out...)
>
> My question is how often would you recommend doing a "pacman -Syu" to
> avoid having so many "workarounds" that you feel like it might have
> been easier to reinstall????

It really depends on what happens during development.
I'd say once a month is a good frequency, but always remember to read
the announcements on archlinux.org.

You can also subscribe to the announcements mailing list:
http://mailman.archlinux.org/mailman/listinfo/arch-announce

Cheers.
 

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