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Re: Installing newer kernels

On Thu 17 Mar 2016 at 16:18:14 (-0700), William Lee Valentine wrote:
> I have installed Debian 2.6.32-5-686 on two machines. One, a custom
> machine, has a Pentium III processor running at 800 megahertz, and has
> 500 megabytes of memory; the other is an IBM Mpro Intellistation 6229
> with a Pentium IIII processor running at 2.2 gigahertz, and has 2
> gigabytes of memory.
> Debian notified me of updates for some time after I had had put it on
> those machines. Then it ceased to have anything to say about updates. I
> have four questions to ask about maintaining Debian.
> (1) Am I to update the kernel periodically? Is there advantage to doing
> so?
> (2) If I do, will I again receive notices of updates, and will these
> reference only the new kernel or the new kernel and also other programs
> that I have installed?
> (3) If I update the kernel, do I simply download it and install it over
> the old one, or is there some process of uninstalling the old kernel
> that is needed before a later kernel is put in?
> (4) How much disc space, at the minimum, should I allot to Debian, if I
> leave it essentially in a single block on the primary disc drive? I
> assume that OpenOffice will be installed automatically (since it was
> earlier); and I will try to install XAMPP, WordPress, and Drupal.
> Thank you for helping me to understand how to maintai8n these systems.

In case this might be useful, here's my own checklist for a dist-upgrade:

A fairly full list of steps in upgrading a Debian distribution.
Running script might help, with care when it is upgraded itself.
It's safer not to be in X.

0. check backups are valid, rebackup, and repeat before big steps.

1. read any upgrade/release notes for the new distribution.

2. apt-get update the current packages list.

3. apt-get upgrade the current distribution.

4. apt-get dist-upgrade the current distribution if necessary.

5. remove any 3rd-party and iffy packages, and backports, if possible.

6. (re)move desktop environment stuff.

7. renew the sources list, also commenting out any 3rd-party sources.

8. review /etc/apt/preferences* and /etc/apt/apt.conf* and/or move them.

9. apt-get clean (though I do this myself as a matter of routine).

10. apt-get update the new packages list.

11. possibly upgrade linux-image, linux-headers, dpkg, apt and aptitude,
    and reboot, bearing in mind anything like wireless stuff, ndiswrapper.
    (If script running, save typescript.)

12. apt-get upgrade to the new distribution: much might be held back.

13. there's usually a set of changes listed which needs acknowledging: q.

14. there's usually a query whether to restart services automatically: y.

15. if disk space is an issue, clean the cache after saving debs
    (if not running apt-cache).

16. check if udev has been upgraded and whether it needs to be,
    before or after a reboot (remembering script).

17. apt-get dist-upgrade to the new distribution.

18. if disk space is an issue, ...

19. apt-get -f install occasionally to fix problems including removals/purges.

20. sometimes dpkg --configure -a helps because something unconfigured is
    holding loads of debs back.

12-20. repeat from about here.

21. save any new debs not already saved, if needed.

22. if the kernel was upgraded since the last reboot, reboot
    (remembering ndiswrapper and script).

23. check over package release notes.

24. sort out mc configuration, especially confirm delete.

25. start reapplying customisations where still necessary.

26. check functionality and add 3rd-party packages where still necessary.

27. archive any script/typescript outputs that might have been saved.

28. save any new package debs and import them into apt-cacher-ng if necessary.

29. see if X still works!


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