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I need to migrate from the tuned Ubuntu Server 8.04 LTS x32 to new OS Ubuntu Server 10.04 LTS x64. Our team are use this server for collaboration. Now installed: Samba server, Apache, Subversion, Mediawiki, Bugzilla, VirtualBox with guest OS'es. New installation should be on the same HDD as the old one. Server should be offline no more then couple hours.

  1. How can I properly migrate without loosing all my system settings(network,mail, etc.)? Can I copy all settings from /etc to the new OS? Can I copy user settings from /home to the new OS?
  2. Is there a way to find all distinctions from clean installation so I could apply them to the new OS?
  3. How to keep the same set of installed packages?
  4. Is there a tool to automate migration?
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Seriously? How are you going to test so to know that all of the features you depend upon still exist? How long can you afford to be down? How do you practice restoring if the install doesn't go well? I'm not trying to belittle your effort, but with the details above, you are not mentally prepared for something to go wrong. Your boss should be asking these questions too. Why not? Before your peers are mad from a failed upgrade, please have a backup plan. – zerolagtime Oct 10 '10 at 1:36
I'm not going to destroy partition with the original installation. It should be clean install on same HDD, but on different partition. – Kirill V. Lyadvinsky Oct 10 '10 at 9:11
up vote 2 down vote accepted

There is no automated way that I've ever found to upgrade between processor architectures. Also a manual upgrade will take longer than 2 hours, so I would strongly recommend that you don't do an in-place upgrade.

  1. Don't copy all of /etc since that includes settings that relate to the particular release. Copy only the relevant subdirectories (eg /etc/mail/, /etc/apache2/, /etc/samba/ etc). You'll be find with /home however.

  2. You want the debsums command, which will tell you what files differ from what was installed

  3. Identify all the installed packages (dpkg -i | egrep ^i | awk '{ print $2 }' > /some/place) and then re-install those packages (aptitude install `cat /some/place`), noting that some will no longer exist, having been replaced by other packages

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+1 I've had an unfortunately large number of headaches from trying to upgrade in place, and you probably can't do it across architectures. Rebuild the machine manually on your spare, then rotate the spare into use once you believe it's ready. – Paul McMillan Oct 10 '10 at 1:36
Thanx for debsums. – Kirill V. Lyadvinsky Oct 21 '10 at 4:41

You might want to try to clone your 8.04 server first using clonezilla, that this way you have two identical server, then afterward you upgrade the cloned server by using standard procedure by typing *update-manager --devel-release

Make sure you use different network subnet to avoid any problems with your current production server,then after you upgrade the server,check all configuration running in place before you start using your cloned server upgraded to 10.04

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