Geek Journal: Attempting to upgrade Linux Mint.

I’ve been using Linux Mint Rosa 17.3 for a long time.  This was the plan.  I prefer an LTS release, so I don’t have to deal with this issue every year.  This year, though, I struck some problems with usability due to it being close to the end of its life.

In particular, I couldn’t get my Trezor wallet to work in Chrome anymore.  The problem was that the development of the Trezor bridge had begun to use dependencies that were not available in 17.3.  I resigned myself to having to boot into Windows to use my Trezor, but that was not a long-term solution.

On the release of the next LTS version of Linux Mint, I upgraded to version 18.x and thought my problems would be solved, but no,  I hit a hardware regression.  My Radeon chip had a bug that would lock up the system with the kernel provided in 18.  I went through the process of reinstalling 17.3 and just stuck with that.

Fast forward to today, and Linux Mint has a new LTS version.  Linux Mint 19 (LTS), code-named ‘Ubuntu Bionic’.  I don’t like the name at all.  I much preferred the girls’ names, but whatever.  I like Linux Mint.  It is stable and well constructed.  It is Debian based, which means good package management.

I started with some experimentation by resizing and creating new hard drive partitions.  Did I make a backup first?  No.  I flew by the seat of my pants and just resized.  I thank the gods of computing for not allowing that to go south.

I’m typing this out from an experimental Linux Mint 19 install.  I have not encountered any lock-up bugs while booting and the Trezor bridge installs with all the dependencies now.

Next comes the hard part.  I have to migrate my old /home directory to a new installation.  I didn’t create a separate /home partition.  I’m going to have to do it all manually.  For now, I’m going to leave that be.  It is not something I can rush.  I need to think it all through before executing.  One thing I’ve learned from migrating old /home directories is that the old configs can make a ‘pretty’ new installation suddenly look ugly.   I don’t want ugly.

I have to pluck a whole lot of crypto wallets and associated keys out without messing up.  As I type this I wonder whether I should just transfer all funds out of the wallets and start with brand new wallets.

It’s not going to be fun!  But it will be worth it.  Stay tuned.

Linux Mint 19 Cinnamon.

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