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Thread: Linux: Upgrade version or reinstall?

  1. #11
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    Well, riffling through the log files, I reminded that the first hint of trouble was this:

    systemd-detect-virt: symbol lookup error: /lib/systemd/libsystemd-shared-245.so: undefined symbol: seccomp_api_get
    which is related to this bug. An old version of libseccomp was referred by a symlink. Delete the symlink and the old file and create a new symlink to the current file version fixed that.

    But then,

    error processing package grub-pc (--configure):
    installed grub-pc package post-installation script subprocess returned error exit status 1
    The answer there was to "apt purge" grub-pc and delete /etc/grub.d and then reinstall grub-pc (without rebooting!).

    Had I simply re-installed the new version of Ubuntu, I suspect that neither problem would have cropped up.

    On an older system, I ran into issues with old AMD-proprietary Radeon drivers getting in the way (apparently no longer supported). There the issue was to simply purge those and let the upgrade install the generic ones.

    Still kind of sad that the old "ubuntu-tweak" package is history. I really liked that little utility.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Orange View Post
    I'm no MS slappy but it's just about the only game in town . . .

    Seems to me that it's almost like a cult endeavor to get Linux up and running let alone actually do something with it like crunching numbers or a little word processing on the side. "Well hon, how'd it go today"? "Oh, not bad - we almost got it up and going". It does make for a pretty good dedicated server though.
    This was true 15-20 years ago, but not today. Most mainstream Linux distros are made to be easy to get up and running on most generic PC configurations.

    The only "gotcha" is if you're running bleeding edge hardware, or hardware that only has proprietary drivers available. Examples of bleeding edge hardware include Ryzen CPUs and late AMD GPUs, it took Linux a few years to get stable support for both. For proprietary hardware, Broadcom takes the number one spot on the list. They've been notoriously bad about being closed source with their drivers and firmware, which forced people to reverse engineer their products and/or use wrappers to use Windows drivers to make them work. Broadcom LAN/WLAN/WWAN chips are known to have terrible problems in Linux, often forcing people to use USB replacements which use supported chips like from Realtek.

    Ubuntu and OpenSuSE are probably the most newbie friendly distros, and Ubuntu has an easy option to enable proprietary software repositories, so you don't have to add them manually.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by GiGaBiTe View Post
    For proprietary hardware, Broadcom takes the number one spot on the list. They've been notoriously bad about being closed source with their drivers and firmware, which forced people to reverse engineer their products and/or use wrappers to use Windows drivers to make them work. Broadcom LAN/WLAN/WWAN chips are known to have terrible problems in Linux, often forcing people to use USB replacements which use supported chips like from Realtek.
    Ah, the old b43-fwcutter thing. Actually, things have gotten a bit better. Initially, you had to provide your own copy of the Windows driver, then extract the firmware from that. Apparently now, a copy is now available online. I still have a couple of old Wireless-GS PCI cards kicking around and I can report that they're still working with Ubuntu Focal.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck(G) View Post
    Ah, the old b43-fwcutter thing. Actually, things have gotten a bit better. Initially, you had to provide your own copy of the Windows driver, then extract the firmware from that. Apparently now, a copy is now available online. I still have a couple of old Wireless-GS PCI cards kicking around and I can report that they're still working with Ubuntu Focal.
    I'll freely admit the period from around 2002 to 2007 was a pretty challenging time to have a Linux laptop. You had Broadcom and a couple other notable players' remarkably determined fingers-in-the-ears attitude about open software, which was a *particularly* huge problem for wireless cards after everyone and their dog migrated away from the old universal Lucent/Orinoco 802.11b chipset, there was the epic slog of getting all the bugs worked out of the WPA authentication supplicant infrastructure, and then there were the scads of issues, power management and otherwise, relating to ACPI and the transition away from legacy APM. But that's pretty much history now. I think I've manually compiled and installed a driver module for a "mainstream" device (bleeding edge wireless adapter) a grand total of *once* in about the last decade.

    Of course, everyone I knew that was inconvenienced by such things at the time just relegated Linux to their desktop boat-anchor and switched to a Mac for their "I need a portable machine that's not also a hobby" needs. (Including myself.)
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  5. #15
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    Even mainstream distros have their issues I'm sorry to say. That's been my experience. I'm running Fedora 32 on an Asus mini laptop and at times I want to smash the thing to pieces.

    Now that IBM has purchased, or purchased a commanding share of Red Hat, maybe we will see improvements. But I doubt IBM is all that concerned with polishing up Linux for desktop use. Many will sneer at the prospects of a big corporation taking control of a major distro. But thus far much smaller entities haven't been able to produce something reliable (reliable enough, yeah it works kind of). So maybe the big guys will try.

    I just erased 2 long long paragraphs TWICE on this Fedora laden pos. But I'm continuing to fight. And having reread what I posted, realizing I retyped much of an earlier paragraph, wanting to make an entirely different point, I don't care anymore. That's the linux legacy I guess. I've heard someone on this forum not long ago say "nobody cares about Linux on the desktop anymore". Why?! Well maybe I now know why.
    Last edited by tipc; October 15th, 2020 at 04:51 PM.

  6. #16
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    I've deleted a few posts from here, as they really were not on topic, and were once again devolving into a Linux vs Windows flame war, which is completely unrelated to the topic at hand. Please just move on and don't make me close this thread.

    Chuck - Silly question, do you make sure to update your 18.04 before the distro upgrade? I have made the mistake of trying to go from one version to another without doing this, and it was a complete nightmare. The few times I have been forced to do a distro upgrade and I made sure to completely update before doing so were way less painful. Just a thought, I suspect you probably do this anyway.

    IBM 5160 - 360k, 1.44Mb Floppies, NEC V20, 8087-3, 45MB MFM Hard Drive, Vega 7 Graphics, IBM 5154 Monitor running MS-DOS 5.00
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  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by lutiana View Post
    I've deleted a few posts from here, as they really were not on topic, and were once again devolving into a Linux vs Windows flame war, which is completely unrelated to the topic at hand. Please just move on and don't make me close this thread.
    Thank you. May I humbly suggest that if someone has problems understanding why perhaps they should look at the "Stay close to the original topic being discussed" and "Contribute something meaningful" sections of the in the Forum Etiquette document?. Or whatever.
    My Retro-computing YouTube Channel (updates... eventually?): Paleozoic PCs

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck(G) View Post
    The answer there was to "apt purge" grub-pc and delete /etc/grub.d and then reinstall grub-pc (without rebooting!).
    I did have the joyful experience a few months ago of having to repair an Ubuntu machine that went down un-cleanly when the virtual machine host it was on blew up and for *some* reason grub had at some point fouled up so there was no working boot record. (The machine in question was a "pet", not "cattle", so while it was backed up enough to recreate I didn't have any automation to do it so at least taking a crack at resurrecting it seemed like the faster way to get the service back online.) I still have no idea *how* it ended up in an unbootable state, since booting from a live recovery ISO image and re-running grub fixed it. Multiple people access the machine, I suspect someone kicked off a major apt-get dist-upgrade in an ssh window, walked away, and it died awkwardly in the middle, after which the machine was up for weeks in a weird state.
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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by lutiana View Post
    Chuck - Silly question, do you make sure to update your 18.04 before the distro upgrade? I have made the mistake of trying to go from one version to another without doing this, and it was a complete nightmare. The few times I have been forced to do a distro upgrade and I made sure to completely update before doing so were way less painful. Just a thought, I suspect you probably do this anyway.
    In short, yes. The do-release-upgrade script won't let you proceed until you do.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck(G) View Post
    In short, yes. The do-release-upgrade script won't let you proceed until you do.
    Right, I forgot that it does that. Shows you how many times I've done it

    IBM 5160 - 360k, 1.44Mb Floppies, NEC V20, 8087-3, 45MB MFM Hard Drive, Vega 7 Graphics, IBM 5154 Monitor running MS-DOS 5.00
    IBM PCJr Model 48360 640kb RAM, NEC V20,, jrIDE Side Cart, 360kb Floppy drives running MS-DOS 5.00
    Evergreen Am5x86-133 64Mb Ram, 8gb HDD, SB16 in a modified ATX case running IBM PC-DOS 7.10

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