Thursday, November 17, 2016

Upgrading OpenSuSE LEAP 42.1 to 42.2

For some reason I can't find this documented anywhere in a step by step set of instructions that only apply to LEAP 42.1 to 42.2.  The SuSE docs are good but they have to cover a bunch of versions and a lot of edge cases.  So, since this is the web, I puzzled, googled, puzzled, and then tried stuff.   It worked, and it's pretty easy, actually, but seemed strange to me as I'm more used to Debian and Ubuntu, and Fedora.

It seems odd in 2016 to have to use sed to modify a text file, so you can update from a major release of OpenSuSE to another. But you could also edit the zypper repo file by hand, if the following seems too convenient and easy.   Ubuntu  and Debian are a bit friendlier when it's upgrade time.  I was kind of floored that YaST didn't have a "new OpenSuSE version detect/upgrade" menu.

Before starting you should check your drive space and clean up any old snapshots using snapper.  If your system has btrfs as the root filesystem type, I suggest making sure you zap old snapshots until you have at least 12 gigs of free disk space.  You can not believe the output of df if you want to know your real free space on SuSE Linux systems with btrfs, use this command as root:


btrfs filesystem show

Note that it doesn't show you your actual free space, you have to do a bit of mental math, in the example below, there is a little less than 10 gigs free, approximately, probably enough for your upgrade to work.  I always like to have 12 to 15 gigs free before I do any system upgrade, so the situation below is borderline to me:

Label: none uuid: b3b42cba-c08e-4401-9382-6db379176a1f
Total devices 1 FS bytes used 90.21GB
devid 1 size 100.00GB used 85.29GB path /dev/sda4


On the same system above, df -h might report the free gigabytes to be much higher than that, and that is why you can not trust df, it doesn't work right with btrfs.  And to make life even weirder the command btrfs filesystem df /  where df (disk free space) is in the name of the command does not actually report free space, only total and usage.  Sometimes I really want to reach through the internet and ask the authors of tools what were you thinking?

There is a way to get actual free space from btrfs, which is this:

btrfs filesystem usage -h /

Besides giving me the unallocated free space in gigabytes, it also gives me a lot of stuff I don't care about.

Also before starting, make sure your system is up to date (zypper dup) and then list your zypper repos (zypper ls) and disable any that are third party. I disabled google-chrome before upgrade.

I also have a personal habit of archiving my entire pre-update /etc, with tar. (sudo tar cvf /root/etc-backup.tgz /etc).

 As root the system upgrade commands to go from 42.1 to 42.1 is:


sudo sed -i 's/42\.1/42\.2/g' /etc/zypp/repos.d/*
zypper ref
zypper dup


Further decisions/actions may be required, usually involving selection of packages to be de-installed, to avoid broken system. For example:


Reading installed packages...
Computing distribution upgrade...
2 Problems:
Problem: libkdevplatform8-1.7.1-1.3.x86_64 requires kdevplatform = 1.7.1, but this requirement cannot be provided
Problem: kdevplatform-lang-5.0.1-1.1.noarch requires kdevplatform = 5.0.1, but this requirement cannot be provided

Problem: libkdevplatform8-1.7.1-1.3.x86_64 requires kdevplatform = 1.7.1, but this requirement cannot be provided
  deleted providers: kdevplatform-1.7.1-1.3.x86_64
 Solution 1: Following actions will be done:
  deinstallation of kdevelop4-plugin-cppsupport-4.7.1-1.4.x86_64
  deinstallation of kdevelop4-4.7.1-1.4.x86_64
  deinstallation of kdevelop4-lang-4.7.1-1.4.noarch
 Solution 2: keep obsolete kdevplatform-1.7.1-1.3.x86_64
 Solution 3: break libkdevplatform8-1.7.1-1.3.x86_64 by ignoring some of its dependencies


Choose from above solutions by number or skip, retry or cancel [1/2/3/s/r/c] (c): 


I chose     1   whenever given a choice like the one above because I am pretty sure I can live without some bit of stuff (kdevelop and its various bits) until I figure out how to get it back installed and working.

Next I get to the big download stage.  I have to read and accept a few license agreements (page through or hit q, then type yes).


2307 packages to upgrade, 27 to downgrade, 230 new, 11 to reinstall, 89 to
remove, 4  to change vendor, 1 to change arch.
Overall download size: 1.98 GiB. Already cached: 0 B. After the operation, 517.6
MiB will be freed.
Continue? [y/n/? shows all options] (y): 


After all the EULA dances, it's time to get a cup of tea and wait for about 2 gigs of stuff to download through my rickety Canadian cable internet.

Next post will be on the joys of what worked and didn't work after this finishes.

Post-Script:   Everything seems quite stable after upgrade. The official wiki docs on "System Upgrade"  consists of a series of interleaved bits of advice, some of which apply to upgrading from pre-LEAP to LEAP, and some of which generally still apply to 42.1 to 42.2 LEAP updates.   On the SUSE irc chat, Peter Linnell has informed me that starting in Tumbleweed there is a new package to make this process easier called yast2-wagon.

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