[clug] Reinstall and reformat?

Rasjid Wilcox rasjidw at openminddev.net
Fri Mar 19 11:59:18 GMT 2004

On Friday 19 March 2004 22:24, Sam Couter wrote:
> Rasjid Wilcox <rasjidw at openminddev.net> wrote:
> > Well, personally I reformat everything except /home and /usr/local when
> > doing that kind of upgrade, so I know that nothing from the old version
> > is left hanging around.
> I just apt-get update && apt-get dist-upgrade without worrying about
> what's stored where, which partitions are formatted, etc.
> Reformatting is for Windows systems. Silly rabbit.

This is why I, too, run Debian on servers.

I think I picked a bad time last time I tried Debian on the desktop (a while 
ago now), and am so still on a rpm based system (SuSE).  I have not tried a 
SuSE upgrade yet, but I tried upgrading a RedHat system a couple of times, 
and it never went smoothly, so with RH I recommend reformatting the system 
directories during upgrade.  Perhaps it is better now, but I suspect the 
problems were (are?) due to a fundamental flaw in the rpm model.

To be fair however, I could generally get my system fully back to 'normal' 
(with all config files adjusted) after an upgrade in under half an hour.  Any 
config file I had modified lived in /usr/local/etc/ with symlinks in /etc/ to 
them.  And at least my /home partition always remained untouched, and my 

(Even if you have a D: drive under Windows, all your user-settings are in the 
registry, which is well and truely gone after a reformat - which in my 
experience generally should be done every 12 months or so even if you are not 
upgrading the system.)



Rasjid Wilcox
Canberra, Australia (UTC +11 hrs)

More information about the linux mailing list