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Upgrade Troubles and Transfer Questions

Banfa
Expert Mod 5K+
P: 8,996
OK so last night I decided to upgrade my Kubuntu installation release from 7.04 (Gutsy Gibon) to 8.10 (Hardy Heron) because as someone pointed out 8.04 is a LTS release.

Starting the install was simplicity because the Update Manager simply asked if I wanted to. A couple of hours later everything was good to go and I restarted and that is when it all when pear shaped.

Trying to get my Nvidia card drivers reinstalled correctly again was a nightmare. I tried lots of stuff with repeats. At one point I end up with 7 or 8 different Kernels installed. It was only when grub gave me lots of extra options at boot time that I realised what these packages where, I in fact already had 3 kenerals installed when I started so I was able to fix that at least and not I have a single kernel installed.

In the end what was required was a hand edit to xorg.config to enter my monitor capabilities (I am sure 7.10 just detected these no problem, it appears a backwards step has happened somewhere) and then re-installed the driver from NVidia.

Of course that last step is not exactly easy because you have run the NVidia supplied program with the x server running. As far as I could tell this involved removing the current display manager (GDM in my case) (sudo update-rc.d -f gdm remove) and rebooting then running the set-up program and re-enabling the GOME display manager (sudo update-rc.d gdmdefaults) and rebooting again.

If anyone knows of a simpler method to get to terminal with x server not running please let me know.

So finally I at 1:30am after 5 hours I get my graphics card working again properly.

Now you may notice that I have said I have Kubuntu installed but I am using GNOME. Well that is because I found the KDE interface overly complicated and additionally almost all the K????? programs seemed to crash after only a few minutes of operation.

So having decided that GNOME once my system was working again I removed as much of KDE as I could, nearly 0.5 Gb. Before anyone says that if I am using GNOME I should do a clean Ubuntu install I would like to say that after last nights experience and having finally got this program working there is NO WAY I am doing another Linux install in the near future.

So onto problems.

The login screen, it used to show the logo in the middle with the text entry box beneath it and a Toolbar at the bottom with an Options button on the left of it.

Now it shows the logo in the bottom right with the text entry box beneath it, there is no sign of the tool bar and Options button. It looks like the login screen is being displayed at a higher resolution than the screen resolution. Any comments/suggestions?

OK so I have examined what I use on my windows installation, mainly Firefox, ThunderBird and OpenOffice, and since those are all available for Linux I should be able to switch. Now OpenOffice isn't a problem I just need to move my documents across but how do I transfer my Firefox and ThunderBird settings?
Aug 12 '08 #1
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11 Replies

Nepomuk
Expert 2.5K+
P: 3,112
OK so last night I decided to upgrade my Kubuntu installation release from 7.04 (Gutsy Gibon) to 8.10 (Hardy Heron) because as someone pointed out 8.04 is a LTS release.
Some confusion there, don't you think? ^^
To make things clear for everyone:
Ubuntu 7.04 is Feisty Fawn
Ubuntu 7.10 is Gutsy Gibbon
Ubuntu 8.04 is Hardy Heron
Ubuntu 8.10 will be Intrepid Ibex (not released yet)
I guess, you were updating from 7.10 to 8.04, right?
Trying to get my Nvidia card drivers reinstalled correctly again was a nightmare. I tried lots of stuff with repeats. [...] In the end what was required was a hand edit to xorg.config to enter my monitor capabilities (I am sure 7.10 just detected these no problem, it appears a backwards step has happened somewhere) and then re-installed the driver from NVidia.
I had a similar experience when upgrading to Hardy. Strange, but they've changed a lot of the graphics system and I'm hoping it will be a much better system soon.
Of course that last step is not exactly easy because you have run the NVidia supplied program with the x server running. [...]If anyone knows of a simpler method to get to terminal with x server not running please let me know.
With CRTL+ALT+F2 you can have a terminal and edit the xorg.conf (e.g. with vim or nano). I'm not sure about the NVidia program, but if you check it's manpage, it probably has terminal based functions too.

The login screen [...] shows the logo in the bottom right with the text entry box beneath it, there is no sign of the tool bar and Options button. It looks like the login screen is being displayed at a higher resolution than the screen resolution. Any comments/suggestions?
Had the same problem after updating, but I found the following solution online:
  1. Backup xorg.conf with sudo cp xorg.conf xorg.conf.bak
  2. Then run displayconfig-gtk. Set Monitor and resolution.
  3. Edit xorg.conf (in the terminal with vim or nano or in your Gnome with any editor of your choice)
  4. Under Sektion Screen find the lines
    Expand|Select|Wrap|Line Numbers
    1. Virtual Size 
    2. Modes 
  5. In the "Virtual Size" line, reduce the values drastically
  6. Save and close the editor.
  7. Reboot
OK so I have examined what I use on my windows installation, mainly Firefox, ThunderBird and OpenOffice, and since those are all available for Linux I should be able to switch. Now OpenOffice isn't a problem I just need to move my documents across but how do I transfer my Firefox and ThunderBird settings?
This article should help you transfer your Firefox- and ThunderBird settings from Windows to Ubuntu.

There, a few problems less. :-D

Greetings,
Nepomuk
Aug 12 '08 #2

Banfa
Expert Mod 5K+
P: 8,996
Oo I just remembered another think I wanted to ask which is do you Linux gurus use ThunderBird or do you use some other email client?

I only ask because my experience with ThunderBird is that it sometimes corrupts its mail folder archives resulting in no data appearing in the program until a hand edit of the files to correct the corruption is performed.

P.S. Thanks for the tips so far.

P.P.S. If this is the user friendly version of Linux I would hate to be using the user unfriendly version :D
Aug 12 '08 #3

Nepomuk
Expert 2.5K+
P: 3,112
Oo I just remembered another think I wanted to ask which is do you Linux gurus use ThunderBird or do you use some other email client?

I only ask because my experience with ThunderBird is that it sometimes corrupts its mail folder archives...
Well, I use ThunderBird and have never had any problems, but maybe this Comparison of e-mail clients on Wikipedia can help you find a few alternatives. Two e-mail clients that are used a lot in the Linux universe are K-Mail and Evolution. Personally I'm not a fan of K-Mail, but maybe that's just me. Never tested Evolution.
P.S. Thanks for the tips so far.
You're welcome!
P.P.S. If this is the user friendly version of Linux I would hate to be using the user unfriendly version :D
I guess the main problem with Ubuntu is, that they're trying to do to much. They do have some great ideas, but they have a new version every 6 months and I guess that's just not enough to make it really excellent.
However, in many cases, Ubuntu is user friendly. At least, that's what I think.

Greetings,
Nepomuk
Aug 12 '08 #4

Banfa
Expert Mod 5K+
P: 8,996
However, in many cases, Ubuntu is user friendly. At least, that's what I think.
It's not bad, still not quite ready for the unwashed masses though I'd say :D
Aug 12 '08 #5

Banfa
Expert Mod 5K+
P: 8,996
Had the same problem after updating, but I found the following solution online:
  1. Backup xorg.conf with sudo cp xorg.conf xorg.conf.bak
  2. Then run displayconfig-gtk. Set Monitor and resolution.
  3. Edit xorg.conf (in the terminal with vim or nano or in your Gnome with any editor of your choice)
  4. Under Sektion Screen find the lines
    Expand|Select|Wrap|Line Numbers
    1. Virtual Size 
    2. Modes 
  5. In the "Virtual Size" line, reduce the values drastically
  6. Save and close the editor.
  7. Reboot
Unfortunately this didn't work but after some delving I fixed the problem this way

My Original xorg.conf was

Expand|Select|Wrap|Line Numbers
  1.     SubSection     "Display"
  2.         Virtual     1280 1024
  3.         Depth       24
  4.         Modes       "1024x768@60" "1280x1024@60" "800x600@60" "1280x960@60" "800x600@56" "640x480@60"
  5.     EndSubSection
  6.  
I believe the login screen was displaying at 1280 x 1024 but being shown in a 1024 x 768 view port. By reordering the 'Modes' line to
Expand|Select|Wrap|Line Numbers
  1.     SubSection     "Display"
  2.         Virtual     1280 1024
  3.         Depth       24
  4.         Modes      "1280x1024@60" "1280x960@60" "1024x768@60" "800x600@60" "800x600@56" "640x480@60"
  5.     EndSubSection
  6.  
The login screen displayed correctly at 1280 x 1024. It appears that the login screen just uses the first entry in the Modes line as the view port size.
Aug 13 '08 #6

P: 62
Sorry you had so much trouble upgrading but I have never seen that problem before (except for when I was running the cutting edge version of KDE). As for e-mail clients, I have used thunderbird, evolution and kontact for periods of a couple months each before finally choosing thunderbird. I have never had any problems with it messing up my e-mail or requiring any editing by hand on that front, though I have had problems with it and RSS feeds though that seems to be fixed now.

For a slight comparison of the three e-mail clients mentioned above from my perspective, evolution has a nice set of tools including a calender, task list, contact manager, rss reader and, of course, an e-mail client all in one with no add-ons necessary. They all seem to work well and I have no complaints. Kontact is different, to say the least. Kontact is actually just a front end to manage other programs, including a calender, a contact manager, an rss reader and some others. Once again, it works fine though I found the filters annoying. Finally, there is thunderbird. I ended up sticking with it because not only does it have all the features of the others to start with (at least once you install lightning), it also has more add-ons which allowed me to customize it how I wanted.

If you have a little time I would suggest installing all the clients and using them all for a while to find which you like best (it is a pain to set them all up but it did give me a feel for which features I really liked).

Even though you said you weren't willing to do it because of the difficulty you had with the upgrade I would still suggest doing a clean install with gnome. Neither me nor any of my friends have had any trouble with this (and some of them are hopeless when it comes to technology). I have a feeling that most of your problems came from switching from kde to gnome once ubuntu was already installed. I never had the guts to try that because of the difficulty I had switching the login manager.

Edward
Aug 13 '08 #7

Nepomuk
Expert 2.5K+
P: 3,112
Even though you said you weren't willing to do it because of the difficulty you had with the upgrade I would still suggest doing a clean install with gnome.
If you do chose to do so Banfa, I'd backup the xorg.conf before and if it doesn't work right after the reinstall, just replace the new xorg.conf with the backuped one.

Of course, you can always just stick with what you've got.

Greetings,
Nepomuk
Aug 14 '08 #8

Banfa
Expert Mod 5K+
P: 8,996
Somewhere you talked of setting up a system partition to hold the OS and a data partition to make future system upgrades easy.

Questions:
  • You are talking about creating separate logical partitions on the disk drive yes?
  • Much much space would be required for the system as a minimum?
  • How imperative is it that NTFS data drives be converted to a Linux native format?
  • Can you set your home directory to be on the data drive?
  • Is it me or does Firefox run faster under Linux than Windows, like actually download and render faster?
Aug 14 '08 #9

P: 62
You are talking about creating separate logical partitions on the disk drive yes?
It does not have to be a logical partition as you can have up to 4 primary partitions on one hard drive. If you wanted 5 partitions on one hard drive then you would likely want to make three primary partitions, one extended partition and then sub-divide the extended partition into the necessary logical partitions.

Much much space would be required for the system as a minimum?
As for space for the system, I have installed Ubuntu (7.10) on 10 GB though I think I could have gotten away with less. It all depends on how many programs/kernels you are going to have installed.

How imperative is it that NTFS data drives be converted to a Linux native format?
The partition on which linux is installed cannot be ntfs (it must be ext3). Other than that I have never had a problem with ntfs under linux (though personally I wouldn't bother unless I was duel booting and wanted to share data between both OS's.

Can you set your home directory to be on the data drive?
Yes. Edit the fstab file so the data drive mounts as /home. Before you do this make sure that the data drive has the correct structure for the /home folder and that the permissions for the home directory are correct. If you don't get it right you may be locked out of the system until you correct it. (That is, you wont be able to login to a normal session.)

Is it me or does Firefox run faster under Linux than Windows, like actually download and render faster?
I have never noticed a difference but most of the time for me firefox seems to be slowed down more by the server than by my system/connection.

Edward
Aug 14 '08 #10

Expert 100+
P: 849
If you're using Windows/Linux in a dual-boot setup, I'd recommend formatting with FAT32 rather than NTFS, as I've heard some not-so-nice things about Linux NTFS drivers. I know Ubuntu doesn't come with them preinstalled, so it can (sometimes) read NTFS drives out of the box. Windows FAT32 drivers, on the other hand, are preinstalled and worked fine in the nine months or so that I dualbooted Ubuntu/Vista.
Aug 15 '08 #11

Nepomuk
Expert 2.5K+
P: 3,112
  • Can you set your home directory to be on the data drive?
If you're doing a new setup, you can choose to have a home partition. That will automatically take all home directories (except, that is, the roots home directory). You can of course also have other directories on that disc.
Otherwise, Edward's tip is the best solution I can think of.
  • Is it me or does Firefox run faster under Linux than Windows, like actually download and render faster?
How should I know how fast you run? ;-)
Actually, it can imagine that Firefox will be faster under Linux than Windows, but I haven't tested so far. One would have to compare various network-thingie-implementations of the two systems and so on. Or just have two machines with different OSes doing the same job. ^^
If you're using Windows/Linux in a dual-boot setup, I'd recommend formatting with FAT32 rather than NTFS, as I've heard some not-so-nice things about Linux NTFS drivers. I know Ubuntu doesn't come with them preinstalled, so it can (sometimes) read NTFS drives out of the box.
FAT32 is certainly a good option, although with the newer NTFS drivers, I've never had a problem. (The old ones where difficult however.) Still, I formated my external harddrive with FAT32, so that every system should be able to read it.

Greetings,
Nepomuk
Aug 15 '08 #12

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