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  • Does jmping from, e.g. Mint 19.1 to 20 require a completely new OS installation?

    Posted on OscarCP Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Home Forums AskWoody support Non-Windows operating systems Linux – all distros Does jmping from, e.g. Mint 19.1 to 20 require a completely new OS installation?

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      • #2276692 Reply
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        What I am about to ask here might have been already covered very well in some other thread; if so, please answer this comment with a link to what may be a good place to find an answer. (But also writing some good explanations here might be useful to other loungers and anonymous visitors that may want to know about this very specific issue.)

        Now this is what I would like to know:

        I am still running Linux Mint 19.1 and intending to move on to 20, after giving some more time to the new version to be ironed free of unwanted wrinkles and sprayed effectively against bugs. (I have recently installed all the security updates for 19.1 and the system informs me that now it is “fully up to date.”)

        But reading about this, I get the impression that it may be impossible to jump over  intermediate releases, as it would be my case when going from 19.1 to 20. So I am guessing that it may be necessary to make a new complete OS installation (after backing up my files to an external disk) to supersede with 20 the current 19.1 version now installed in my PC.

        Am I right? Thanks for any practical suggestions and clarifications.

        Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group W (ex B) & macOS + Linux (Mint)

      • #2276709 Reply
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        Sorry for this follow on posting:  I am not trying to “push” this new thread, but I think I really should clarify, before anyone answers here, what I mean by “a new installation.” Because, of course, every time one updates the OS, that would be the installation of the new version.

        The first time I installed Linux Mint (19.1) on my old Windows PC, in dual boot with Win 7, I had to perform a major operation with help from an expert friend. Now, both in Windows and in macOS, when a new minor or major release comes up, one first gets notice of it and gets asked if one would like to install it “now”. When, eventually, one then clicks “Yes” (or a button next to some message to this effect) the download and installation of the new OS version proceeds automatically. The user can go out, have a pizza and a coke, and come back in time to do a minor thing, or two, finalizing the procedure and, if required, registering the newly installed OS version.

        It looks to me that this is not anywhere as simple with Linux; and maybe not just with Mint.

        Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group W (ex B) & macOS + Linux (Mint)

        • #2276728 Reply
          mn–
          AskWoody Lounger

          It looks to me that this is not anywhere as simple with Linux; and maybe not just with Mint.

          Hm, well. Things will be specific to distribution, Mint does seem to be a bit less flexible in this than some.

          It is possible for the distributors to make an upgrade tool that can do this, the question is will they…?

          I’m more used to how Ubuntu and Red Hat do things, Mint seems to do things differently.

          But reading about this, I get the impression that it may be impossible to jump over intermediate releases, as it would be my case when going from 19.1 to 20. So I am guessing that it may be necessary to make a new complete OS installation (after backing up my files to an external disk) to supersede with 20 the current 19.1 version now installed in my PC.

          Am I right? Thanks for any practical suggestions and clarifications.

          Oh it probably won’t be impossible to just jump over versions… but reinstalling might be easier, depending. Because in the absence of a premade tool, you’d have to do a lot of manual work to migrate settings and…

          With any specifics, I’d wait until official Mint instructions.

          https://blog.linuxmint.com/?p=3929 says,

          Upgrade instructions:

          Announcements will be made in July with instructions on how to upgrade from Linux Mint 19.3.

          … and this was why people used to be told to make /home a separate filesystem – you could replace the rest of the system but keep /home. Sheesh, large environments often shared the /home (network share, NFS) between several different Unix-type operating systems… as in for example HP-UX, Solaris, Tru64, Linux (at least a few different Red Hat releases) and… and things “just worked”.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2276742 Reply
            Ascaris
            AskWoody_MVP

            I’m more used to how Ubuntu and Red Hat do things, Mint seems to do things differently.

            Upgrade instructions: Announcements will be made in July with instructions on how to upgrade from Linux Mint 19.3.

            Ubuntu said the same thing.  If you wanted to upgrade 18.04 to 20.04, wait until July.  I had to first upgrade my 18.04 Kubuntu to one of the shorter term releases, and from there to 20.04, because I was not willing to “wait until July.”  If it’s released, that means the wait ended, so don’t tell me to wait more.

            Unfortunately, though, Mint only has versions based on Ubuntu LTS, so there’s no stepping stone.  At least July is closer now than when 20.04 came out.

            Group "L" (KDE Neon User Edition 5.19.2).

            • This reply was modified 3 days, 7 hours ago by Ascaris. Reason: mangled quotations
            1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2276722 Reply
        Cybertooth
        AskWoody Plus

        @oscarcp, this webpage may have the info you seek. In addition to a Timeshift snapshot, prior to undertaking the upgrade process I would consider creating a backup disk image using Macrium Reflect or Veeam or whatever other whole-disk imaging solution you may have chosen for your Linux system.

        FWIW, last year I upgraded Kubuntu 16.04 LTS to 18.04 LTS and the operation went smoothly, with no lost data or settings or programs. (YMMV.)

        Good luck!

         

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      • #2276729 Reply
        RetiredGeek
        AskWoody MVP

        Hey Y’all,

        I’ve been trying for 2 days to do this update and I keep getting this:

        Linux-Mint-Could-not-download
        Googling has not provided an answer.

         

        May the Forces of good computing be with you!

        RG

        PowerShell & VBA Rule!
        Computer Specs

        Attachments:
        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2276732 Reply
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        Well… putting together mn- and cybertooth’s replies: it looks like installing 20 to replace 19.1 may be something I could do on my own; on the other hand, from reading the Web page mn- has given a link to, it looks like I may need to fool around with kernels to use the NVIDIA  graphics in my PC (and I am thinking really of a different word of the same length that begins with the same consonant as ‘fool’.) That might be too far for me. Or may be not, if it is correct to conclude that, by waiting longer the problem with the kernels just might go away…

        Retired Geek is also letting me know that when (if?) I have to choose a server to download the OS files from, I ought to steer clear from MS. Not a problem doing that, more like a pleasure, but do I really need to figure out where to make the download from with nothing to go by, in the first place? I hate that sort of thing.

        Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group W (ex B) & macOS + Linux (Mint)

        • #2276744 Reply
          Ascaris
          AskWoody_MVP

          it looks like I may need to fool around with kernels to use the NVIDIA graphics in my PC

          What link from mn- are you referring to?  I didn’t see one that mentioned nVidia above.

          I use nVidia on two of my three main PCs (one with no integrated graphics and one with Optimus/Prime, hybrid Intel/nVidia laptop).  I’ve never had to change kernels for that, though I tend to gravitate toward newer ones anyway.  Upgrading a kernel is especially easy in Mint… one of the menu options in the update manager should say Kernels or something like that,  and inside you will find all the ones offered for the Ubuntu distro upon which the Mint is based.

           

          Group "L" (KDE Neon User Edition 5.19.2).

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2276748 Reply
            OscarCP
            AskWoody Plus

            mn-l link, in the comments at the botom of the page. For example this comment, related to previous ones there:

            “Rovano”

            “I upgrade kernel from 5.3 to 5.4 with Nvidia driver 435.xx. Result 640*480. Replace 435 with 440 and just work fine my 1060.”

            Out of this Russian salad of jargon, and some things others wrote there, I have distilled the conclusion commented on by Ascaris.

            Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group W (ex B) & macOS + Linux (Mint)

          • #2276750 Reply
            OscarCP
            AskWoody Plus

            Ascaris “Upgrading a kernel is especially easy in Mint… one of the menu options in the update manager should say Kernels or something like that

            I was looking for kernel updates for 19.1 some time ago, doing just as described above, but there was nothing there. I was somewhat surprised, because I was expecting to still see those kernel updates that came, either towards the end of the period when 19.1 was still the latest version, or when only recently dead and buried. Apparently, that is not how this works.

            Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group W (ex B) & macOS + Linux (Mint)

            • #2276752 Reply
              DrBonzo
              AskWoody Plus

              In Update Manager pull down the View menu and select Linux Kernels. You’ll get a WARNING screen that cautions you not to do anything impulsively. Just click Continue and you’ll get a screen at the top of which will state which kernel you are currently using. Just below that you’ll see a couple of 5.4 kernels and over on the left you’ll see 5.4, 5.3, 4.18, and 4.15 (that’s what I see; I suppose you might see something a bit different depending what kernel you have installed). If, for example, you’re running a 4.15 kernel, select 4.15 on the left and you’ll see all the 4.15 kernels that are installed and the one that’s active. If you select a kernel you’ll get a few options among which are to install/remove.

              The above is how it works in 19.2; I suspect 19.1 is similar.

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              • #2276757 Reply
                OscarCP
                AskWoody Plus

                DrBonzo: Thanks! I had not noticed, earlier on, that “View” menu in the top bar.

                Choosing “Kernels” there, right now, I have discovered that I am on 4.15.0.108, supported until April 2023. So, guessing I did not have to do anything there, I decided to leave the kernel well alone, making that somber warning unnecessary, anyhow.

                Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group W (ex B) & macOS + Linux (Mint)

              • #2276763 Reply
                Ascaris
                AskWoody_MVP

                4.15 is supported until 2023 for security and bug fixes, but newer kernels support more recent hardware and often have power saving and performance improvements (although there are sometimes regressions too).  There have been some notable improvements to disk I/O scheduling and power savings recently.  That may or may not matter for how you use your PC, but it’s something to think about!

                In general, if you like the way everything works, you might as well leave it as long as it is still maintained… but if you do decide to try out a new kernel, it is installed alongside your old one, not instead of it.  You can pick which one you want to use from the GRUB menu at boot time.  It makes it really easy to go back if you get a bad one (not likely, but it’s good to have a plan in case it happens).

                FWIW, 5.4 is the standard kernel for Mint 20.  I’m using it now on two of my PCs (the G3, which I am using now, and the desktop), and it works well.  It had a few minor annoyances a few months ago, but it’s quite good now, IMO.

                Group "L" (KDE Neon User Edition 5.19.2).

                • This reply was modified 3 days, 5 hours ago by Ascaris.
                1 user thanked author for this post.
              • #2276778 Reply
                OscarCP
                AskWoody Plus

                Ascaris,

                Thanks: that is very helpful to know about the old kernel being kept and one being able to go back and use it again if necessary. Doesn’t the installation of Mint 20 also install the latest kernel, or one still has the option to do it oneself, or keep the old one instead? My computer is still going strong, but it is already nine years’ old, so being able to use new types of hardware, etc. is not likely to be much of an issue.

                On a related topic: have you tried the newest version of Cinnamon, the one that comes with Mint 20? If you have, any comments? In particular, is the famous slider to set incrementally the size of the screen objects really there and does it work well?

                Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group W (ex B) & macOS + Linux (Mint)

      • #2276766 Reply
        firemind
        AskWoody Lounger

        I am using Mint 19.3 and plan to wait until the announcement to upgrade. I remember checking  the info for upgrading to 19.3 to get an idea what upgrading to 20 would be like.

        My take on the matter is that sometime in July there will be an update in Update manager that you download/install that creates a link on the edit page which you can click to upgrade. The process should be similar to following the dialogue boxes when doing an install.

        I’m not sure if we need to upgrade our kernels or Nvidia a bit as Mint should just change what is needed and apply the latest drivers kernel. You may want to be on the latest supported kernel for your version of Mint though. I upgraded my kernel about a month ago and it is already superceded. I am caught up with the Nvidia driver according to the Driver Manager.

        Two things you can do is use Timeshift to back up your settings/etc. It seems to exclude /home by default but you can use the Backup Tool (if 19.1 has it) to take care of that. it creates a backups folder in documents which holds zipped .tar files of your backups. Experiment with getting a size that will fit on USB. Backup Tool is under administration in the launcher.

         

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        • #2276816 Reply
          mn–
          AskWoody Lounger

          ’m not sure if we need to upgrade our kernels or Nvidia a bit as Mint should just change what is needed and apply the latest drivers kernel.

          This part would depend on your hardware anyway. Closed-source kernel modules (like the Nvidia driver) can be a bit of a bother like that, can’t upgrade to a newer kernel than you have hardware drivers for.

          Nvidia isn’t the best out there for driver compatibility… but not the worst either. At least you don’t have a HPE B-series RAID array…

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2277582 Reply
        Bill C.
        AskWoody Plus

        I have had only one nVidia issue. That was when I did my initial install in February of Mint 19.3 Cinnamon on a brand new build using an Intel i7-9700K. This CPU has an integrated Intel GPU. During live testing I kept having resolution limitation problems, but all other testing was fine. I decided to go for it and do the install. At first boot of the new install, it tried to use the Intel graphics using the open source driver and threw some errors. I went to the driver manager and selected the nVidia drivers 435 for my EVGA GTX1660Ti and then had correct resolutions and colors on my 27″ monitor.

        I then rebooted and all was well. I looked at the system logs and saw the system would first try the Intel GPU and then use the nVidia, but it was too fast to see during boot. I went into the UEFI and disabled the Intel onboard GPU and made the nVidia the default GPU. The log errors disappeared.

        I started on kernel 4.15, upgraded soon thereafter to 5.3 and now an at 5.4 without any hiccups. I am now on the current 5.4 kernel and the 400.00 nVidia driver with no issues.

        This is a Linux only machine that has never had Windows on it.

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