Wheezy to Stretch?

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Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby reset042 » 2017-06-28 09:31

Hi,
I've seen it stated that it's not a good idea to upgrade from one version to a version 2 releases on. Is this true?
I have an old PC with Wheezy on it, and a newer PC in a different location that has Stretch on it. The incompatibilities between certain packages are starting to become problematical. (Inkscape, for just one example, works at a completely different resolution between the version in Wheezy and the version in Stretch.)
Could anyone offer advice on upgrading my Wheezy computer to Stretch?
Is it possible (or advisable!) to install Stretch alongside the Wheezy installation on the same machine? Would Grub then let me choose which to boot?
I'd be grateful for any advice.
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby Wheelerof4te » 2017-06-28 09:54

In order to upgrade from Wheezy to Stretch, you must first upgrade to Jessie. Then you can upgrade Jessie to Stretch. Please follow the upgrade process as described in the documentation online. It's possible to have both Wheezy and Stretch on the same PC. Just choose correct kernel for each distro in the Grub loader.

With Debian, also follow the rule "if it isn't broken, don't fix it". If you have Stretch on a newer PC, you can keep Wheezy on the older. Debian 7 Wheezy will be supported untill 31st of May, 2018.

https://wiki.debian.org/LTS
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby reset042 » 2017-06-28 10:07

Thanks for your reply Wheelerof4te - I completely agree with the maxim "if it isn't broken, don't fix it". Trouble is, in this case, it _is_ broken. Some software packages are not compatible. One package that I use on the Stretch PC just will not install on the Wheezy - and I tried installing it from source. So I do need to get Stretch working on the old machine. I'm just not sure of the best way to do that, which is why I'm asking here. Thanks again.
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby dasein » 2017-06-28 12:46

reset042 wrote:Could anyone offer advice on upgrading my Wheezy computer to Stretch?

You would have to do two complete dist-upgrades, as Wheelerof4te pointed out. A fresh install would be quicker.

reset042 wrote:Is it possible (or advisable!) to install Stretch alongside the Wheezy installation on the same machine?

That's certainly a perfectly workable option.

reset042 wrote: Would Grub then let me choose which to boot?

Yes.

But first, I think, you need to decide what you want to do: migrate or run in parallel. You don't seem like you've decided which you want to do.
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby reset042 » 2017-06-29 04:50

dasein wrote: A fresh install would be quicker.

Thanks for that advice. I'm busy at work so the less downtime the better!
dasein wrote: you need to decide what you want to do: migrate or run in parallel. You don't seem like you've decided which you want to do.

You're absolutely right! It's why I'm posting here. Reading docs is one thing but it's no match for getting advice from people experienced in these matters. The whole point of this exercise for me is to have software package compatibility in the two locations at which I work. I have a separate /home partition containing all my work files (fully backed up to two external drives), so would a fresh install recognise that? And offer to use that partition as my /home directory in the new Stretch install?
The parallel option would seem to offer a means of carrying on as before if the fresh install doesn't work on the older machine - though that seems unlikely, (but I try to be cautious!). Other than that I can't see a pressing reason for the parallel option.
Thanks again.
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby bdtc1 » 2017-06-29 10:34

Another option is to upgrade the old computer just one level to Jessie, then use Jessie-backports for things like Inkscape.
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby dasein » 2017-06-29 11:22

reset042 wrote:I have a separate /home partition containing all my work files (fully backed up to two external drives), so would a fresh install recognise that? And offer to use that partition as my /home directory in the new Stretch install?

You can tell the installer to use a specific partition as /home, but the installer won't "recognize" it automagically. Just be extra careful to specify that said partition is not to be formatted as part of the install.

reset042 wrote:The parallel option would seem to offer a means of carrying on as before if the fresh install doesn't work on the older machine - though that seems unlikely, (but I try to be cautious!).

Wise indeed. OTOH if you have backups, then failure is relatively painless.
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby reset042 » 2017-06-29 20:05

Thanks, dasein, for the warning regarding not formatting the partition. Exactly the sort of thing I might've missed!
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby HuangLao » 2017-06-30 00:22

fresh install is probably best, you could also get by for some time with upgrade to Jessie (old stable) then enable backports in
/etc/apt/sources.list
https://backports.debian.org/Instructions/
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Re: Wheezy to Stretch?

Postby GarryRicketson » 2017-06-30 02:23

One more opinion , and agree with the others , If it was me I would do the parallel option, and a fresh install of Debian Stretch, if and when the new installation is working good, then migrate the data from my Debian Wheezy, to the Debian Stretch.
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