Thursday, March 30, 2006

Fedora Core 5: The Upgrade Begins

So while I'm waiting for the plumber to fix up our water softening system (it leaks), it looks like this is a good time to upgrade to Fedora Core 5.

Actually, I've been planning this for a few days, it's just that now I have time on my hands. The preparation involved downloading the Fedora Core 5 DVD, which I hope I don't need, and backing up data.

Downloading the DVD image from the Fedora site was trivial, and K3b burned the thing perfectly. It even passed the RedHat installer media integrity check, something that doesn't always work even though the media actually worked.

Backups were a problem, though. k3b would detect a file named al<weird character>n.lyx~ and refuse to burn the disk. I tried GnomeBaker, which gave me a similar error. In neither case could I actually find the offending file, even using

$ find /

to look through the entire directory.

On the way to finding a "solution" to this problem, I found that I like K3b much better than GnomeBaker for the simple reason that K3b lets me dump my entire directory into the burn list and, when it finds that I've got about 10 GB of files trying to go onto a 4.7 GB DVD, lets me delete files and directories I don't want. GnomeBaker, on the other hand, doesn't let me select more than 4.7 GB of files at one time. This means that to load up the disk in GnomeBaker I have to select individual directories. This would be fine, except that I miss the hidden directories off of my home directory, e.g. .evolution, which holds all of my mail files. I really would like my email backed up. K3b lets me keep the hidden directories. However, I also tarballed the hidden directories I wanted to keep and dragged them onto the GnomeBaker disk.

Eventually I "solved" my problem by not saving some of the weirder files in my hidden directories. At least, I got both GnomeBaker and K3b to make backup copies of my home directory. I tested the disk on a Mac as well as my Linux box, so I think I've got clean backups.

And now we're ready to go. I have the FC5 installation disk, but the simplest way to upgrade would be to do

$ sudo yum update

with yum looking in the Fedora Core 5 repositories rather than in FC4. Brandon Hutchinson tells how to do it. Basically, you download

Load up the RPM, and do a yum update.

I'll let you know how that turns out in a few minutes.