What to back up before upgrading?

Ric Moore wayward4now at gmail.com
Wed Sep 12 09:47:05 UTC 2012

On 09/11/2012 04:41 AM, Chris Green wrote:
> On Mon, Sep 10, 2012 at 03:34:06AM -0400, Ric Moore wrote:
>> On 09/08/2012 10:26 AM, Chris Green wrote:
>>> On Sat, Sep 08, 2012 at 04:05:41PM +0200, Johnny Rosenberg wrote:
>>>> I am finally going to replace my very old Ubuntu 10.10 with the
>>>> somewhat newer Ubuntu 12.04 on my main laptop. I have /home on a
>>>> separate partition and I have an external backup of all my ”important”
>>>> stuff (most of the things kept in $HOME). Whan tryng toplan the whoel
>>>> thing I realised that there are some things I want to keep that's not
>>>> in $HOME, for example my Gedit snippets of the code snippets plugin,
>>>> and they seem to be located at /usr/share/gedit-2/plugins, so
>>>> obviously I need to backup that directory too (maybe the whole
>>>> /usr/share/ directory).
>>>> What more would I probably want to backup before I start installing
>>>> the new system?
>>> I find it useful to make a copy of /etc as there are bits of
>>> customisation there, it's rarely very large so space isn't an issue,
>>> just copy the whole lot.
>>> If you have any databases (mysql etc.) they're in /var which can be a
>>> bit of a pain to backup, but those databases aren't anywhere else.
>>> Finally if you have any custom software additions in /usr/local you need
>>> to back them up.
>>>> I will install the Ubuntu 12.04 from scratch, but I'm going to keep my
>>>> /home partition, if nobody tells me that it would be a very bad idea.
>>>> If so, I will install the whole thing from scratch and then copy what
>>>> I need from my external backup later.
>>> That's the way I do it when I want a good 'clean out'.
>> I'd be cautious with the old "dot-config" files in your home
>> directory. I agree that some old custom bits in /etc should be
>> backed up as well, but again, a lot has changed since 10.10, and I
>> can never keep up. So, very cautious restores is the bigger deal, to
> Yes, yes, you don't blindly copy the configuration files over the new
> 12.04 ones, but you can go and look at the old files and see what
> customisation you have added over the years.  If you don't have copies
> of the old files you have to "re-invent the wheel".

Which is far better than breaking the wheel, and hoping someone can 
remotely divine the problems resulting, on a email-list. :) Ric

My father, Victor Moore (Vic) used to say:
"There are two Great Sins in the world...
..the Sin of Ignorance, and the Sin of Stupidity.
Only the former may be overcome." R.I.P. Dad.

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