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Re: Cannot reinstall lenny over existing

Christopher Buckley wrote:
Hi there,

I've had problems trying to re-install Debian Lenny from CD. It appears that it will not allow me to install over existing data. When I get to the use manual partition format, I select don't format to keep all data and select a mount point for each partition. After I finish partitioning, I soon get the "Proceed with install to unclean target?" box and select Yes. The installation of the base system begins, and a minute or two later I get: Debootstrap Warning
Warning: Failure trying to run: chroot /target dpkg --force-depends
--install var/cache/apt/archives/libc6_2.7-18_i386.deb
Apparently, it is trying to install the "C" library package and fails, likely because the libraries have already been installed. I select "Continue", and then I get Base system installation error ...exit (error 1) Check /var/log/syslog or see virtual console 4 for the details Okay, so it clearly didn't install the libraries. Checking Alt-F4 and I see: A non-dpkg owned copy of the libc6-i686 package was found
 It is not safe to upgrade the C Library in this situation
 Please remove....blah,blah,blah
Well, yeah, of course it's unsafe, that's the whole point...I'm trying to RE-INSTALL, which leads me to my question. Suppose a portion of my system gets corrupted, how do I restore it or re-install, without having to wipe my disks and re-install EVERYTHING??? Eventually I can only end up at the main menu. It appears the only solution is to wipe the drive and start again, as that is the only thing that works. Surely there must be a short-cut method, but it's not evident in the automated install, and there doesn't appear to be a way to do it from the boot CD. Is this a bug in the installer, or is it by design? Got any suggestions? Cheers


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It is not a bug. You should not do that, you should at least erase /, /usr, /var if not format them (if they are separate partitions) from a live CD and then reinstall.

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