[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

vision: easily move all my data and config to a new machine

I've read a scrum book and have learned about the importance of visions. 
Visions like: "to put a man on the moon and return him safely by the end of 
the decade"

I'm currently switching my laptop (again) and I have the following vision:
The Debian system should provide tools to make it possible to switch over from 
one machine to another in a matter of minutes without leaving any data, 
configuration or customization of the old machine behind.

I've started by building debian packages with equivs that have dependencies to 
all packages that I've installed by hand on my old machine.[1] This is not 
comfortable. I started thinking about a tagging system that allows users to 
attach some information to each debian package: why did I install it? What is 
it category for me: debian-development, fun, scientific-paper-writing, 
children-education, ... On another machine I could then install packages based 
on such tags.

I move as much data as possible into the custody of git-annex.

I manage my dot files with vcsh.

Now I'd like to know which files in /etc are still in their default state and 
which were modified by me, including a diff against the default. Is there some 
possibility to get this information? I have etckeeper installed but I don't 
see how it could give me this information.

What other things are there that I'd want to move to the new machine? For 
example /var/spool/cron.

I think I'll write a cronjob to do a daily listing of the packages that I've 
installed on my machine by hand[1] and that are not yet covered by an equivs 

[1] aptitude search "?not(?essential) ?installed ?not(?reverse-
depends(?installed)) ?not(?reverse-predepends(?installed)) ?not(?reverse-
recommends(thkoch-.*)) ?not(?reverse-suggests(thkoch-.*)) 
?not(?priority(important)) ?not(?priority(required)) 

Maybe we should talk about this topic at the debconf in Switzerland?


Thomas Koch, http://www.koch.ro

Reply to: