Upgrade Ubuntu 8.04 to 8.10

Almost flawless upgrade from Hardy Heron to Intrepid Ibex. Only python-setuptools needed manual attention. Other than that: I love it!

Although Intrepid Ibex has been released quite a while ago, and the new release is only a few months away, I finally decided to upgrade. A colleague reported problems with his Nvidia chipset last year and he downgraded to Hardy again. Since I have setup my X so I can use my laptop with an extra monitor, I was afraid I’d also run into problems. A dying hard disk gave me the last push to finally upgrade.

(The hard drive in my laptop made a high pitched noize indicating a problem with the ball bearings. To replace it, I created an image with ddrescue to a USB drive, which worked great! After restoring it I decided this was the right moment to also test whether the upgrade of Ubuntu would work. If anything would go wrong, restoring the image again would be a breeze.)

All in all the upgrade went pretty smooth. There was just a small problem with upgrading the python-setuptools package. It probably went wrong because I upgraded it manually a while ago. Uninstalling the package (apt-get remove python-setuptools) and reinstalling it again (yep: apt-get install python-setuptools) solved it. Okay, I also had to install two additional packages which were removed since they depended on python-setuptools, but that was it.

Since I haven’t done any actual work with this upgraded version, I cannot confirm everything works exactly as it used to. But I am confident I won’t be disappointed. Two things I noted and am very enthousiastic about:

  1. Suspending the system finally works! This will make working while traveling a lot easier.
  2. The new nvidia-settings utility makes it possible to apply changed settings immediately without having to log out and in again.

Especially the last will help me improve my daily routine! Now I can more easily disconnect the extra monitor I use at the office and take my laptop to e.g the desk of a colleague to pair program without losing the panels and half of my windows or logging out of X. Need to show something on a beamer? No problem, I can just connect it and a couple of quick clicks later it just works.

Thanks Ubuntu community and Canonical!