Collaboration

How to pre-upgrade Fedora 13

Fedora 13 is just out, and if you're planning to upgrade, Vincent Danen has some tips for using Fedora's PreUpgrade tool to get your system ready.

Now that Fedora 13 is available, many users will be looking to upgrade from Fedora 12 to 13 in a convenient fashion. The Fedora PreUpgrade tool can help in this regard.

PreUpgrade downloads required packages to upgrade, while you continue to use your system. Because the package set might be large, or an Internet link might be slow, using PreUpgrade is useful because it doesn't block you from using the computer while the packages are being downloaded. If it takes 24 hours to download, it doesn't matter: you are still free to use the system.

Before beginning with any kind of upgrade, make sure that your files and data are backed up and that the backup is current. So the first step to an upgrade would be to perform a backup.

The next is to ensure you have PreUpgrade installed, which can be done by issuing the following as the root user:

# yum install preupgrade python-urlgrabber

After this, run a final yum update to ensure you have the latest package updates from Fedora 12 currently installed.

Execute the following to start the PreUpgrade GUI:

# preupgrade

This will launch a GUI assistant to help in the process of upgrading. If you are upgrading to a test release (in other words, if you are upgrading from Fedora 12 to Fedora 13 beta, like I did), select the "Display unstable test releases" checkbox; otherwise the newer final release will be listed. Select the version to upgrade to and click Apply.

At this point, wander away or continue to use the system while packages and installer images are being downloaded. This can take quite a while (just under two hours here).

Also, note that if you do not have a large enough /boot partition to store the upgrade installer image, you will want to have an active wired Ethernet connection. Upon rebooting, the stage 2 installer image will download for the upgrade to continue. When you are ready to start, hit the OK button in the PreUpgrade window.

Upon reboot, the installer will ask to configure the network and then proceed to download the required image file for the upgrade to complete. As you go through the installer, you can choose whether to do a fresh install, or an upgrade of the existing system. The upgrade will take a while, depending on the number of packages to install, but when it is finished, reboot, and your system is a fully upgraded (or newly installed) Fedora 13.

Using PreUpgrade is nice because all of the packages are downloaded before starting out, so network interruptions are not an issue, or missing packages, etc. And splitting the downloading and installing into two separate stages reduces the time that the system will be unavailable for use, in some cases, considerably (again, depending upon the speed of your internet connection).

About

Vincent Danen works on the Red Hat Security Response Team and lives in Canada. He has been writing about and developing on Linux for over 10 years and is a veteran Mac user.

7 comments
mwclarke1
mwclarke1

Tried the preupgrade, all the updates downloaded, since my boot partition was not large enough, it tried to then download the stage 2 installer image which never could find the image, although I could manually find it using the patch it was trying, the upgrade program keeps saying can not find it (not going through any proxy, direct Internet connection ) Figured since the boot partition should be larger for future releases, I tried to then download the ISO, and install from DVD, that installation fails. However my failure may not be Fedora ? Under Fedora 12 my system would crash, go to blank screen, system just halted (not running), thought maybe a driver issue, IBM Lenovo desktop. Then while trying to run with a fresh install of Fedora 13 several times crashed during the install, different place each time, so not suspect possible hardware. Going to try another distro and maybe even a previous release see if can get to crash, if so will try rep[lacing memory, power supply, etc until I either fix or decide to replace altogether. If does not crash with other distro/release then I will suspect a driver issue. I did have Fedora 10 running without issues so not sure, could be coincidence having a hardware issue right after

mark_pearson
mark_pearson

I have not been able to make this work! I load http_proxy but I don't know how to configue the user and password for the proxy server.

stjohnmedrano
stjohnmedrano

Upgrade is good, but for me i would love to have a fresh install, so i could knew that any bugs will encounter are surely from the fedora13 and not from upgrade, will anyway thats my opinion. just dont forget to backup.

xMstSpider
xMstSpider

Hi, thanks for the article. But there can be one issue you have to think about: Fedora 13 and above has a 500 MB default boot partition. The default /boot filesystem size of 200MB for previous releases can be a problem for users upgrading from that release. //Zdenek

vdanen
vdanen

Yeah, the /boot size thing bit me, but if you look on the Fedora wiki, there are ways to work around it. If you have a wired network connection, you don't need stage 2; it'll install it from the network at boot. That's what I had to do (still have a habit of making small /boot partitions... from now on I think they'll be at minimum 500MB rather than 100MB). Strange on the hardware bit. I had no problems at all with my machine (but it's a newer Core i7) except that the nouveau driver would make the nvidia card's fan run full tilt. Needed the commercial drivers to make it quiet.

vdanen
vdanen

Not sure. I did some googling and can't see anything for using http_proxy with authentication. It's too bad as you could set that before calling preupgade on the commandline and it would respect it, but I don't see any information on how to do it with authentication. Sorry!