The Story of the Youth Who Went Forth to Learn What Upgrade Means

2009-07-29 14:51:47

We had this server, you know, a really old server. It still ran openSUSE 10.2, which is baaad, mkay? So there was a plan. A brilliant plan. Let's upgrade it to 11.1. No clean install, no DVD, just netinstall.

Then there was silence, because neither the openSUSE websites nor the oracle had any decent hints, all to be found was "OMG ITS DEAD, HALP!"

So the drama began. Disabling all services except sshd was the first step
The plan would be to be a bit conservative and go 10.2 -> 10.3 -> 11.0 -> 11.1, so the second step was to get a decently fresh version of zypper that supports the dup parameter (dist-upgrade).
So off to and grab the RPM.
Next came a mass of rpm -Uhv --test [whatever].rpm accompanied by an RPM search for the missing libs and a whiteboard drawing of dependencies as I didn't want to resolve em automatically to avoid completely destroying the system.
Lucky day, after 10 RPMs we had a fresh zypper. Just.. doh, it was a 10.3 zypper without dup. But luckily there was a backport of an 11.0 zypper version for 10.3 and with like 3 more dependencies and an enhanced whiteboard drawing it was done.
The rest went quite normal like described on openSUSE - Upgrade.

- zypper ref, zypper dup, fetch 320 MB - check /boot/grub/menu.lst, whee, new kernel. - reboot - no ping, grab serial console - doh, it's root(hd0,0) and not root(/dev/md0) - woohoo, booting up - uname -a shows a correct kernel, but yast won't start. whatever, next step

From then on it was just following the aforementioned upgrade procedure with additional attention to be paid to not forget zypper in zypper after each zypper ar and a few zypper ref inbetween and upgrading rpm as well. cpio: Bad magic is not something you like to read. (Reminds me of magicquotesgpc, what the hell. MAGIC. As in mushrooms, I swear. Ever heard of determinism?
relogin_suggested in yast/zypper is also something that's badly named, it means: "reboot your damn box" - and you should.
Total traffic: about 330MB per Upgrade, so not more than 1GB for 10.2 to 11.1

So, after a few hours everything looks fine, except for a postgrey that switched from tcp sockets to unix sockets without telling anyone and of course overwriting postfix config files. Positively surprised the SuSEfirewall2 rules were all still intact. yast was starting again and after adding the updates-repo and some more zypper up I called it a night.


Life's a bitch, life's a whore. Nothing less, nothing more.

Read More