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Thread: Copy Ubuntu installation to another machine

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010

    Copy Ubuntu installation to another machine


    I have just spent two days configuring my Ubuntu 9.10 installation on my netbook and tweaking it to get it just right. I don't want to go through this whole process again on my desktop, so is there a way I can copy my entire installation (programs, configurations, all settings, EVERYTHING) to another existing Ubuntu installation. I say existing, because I've looked into methods like dd but they're not suitable. I'm running Ubuntu in a virtual machine on my desktop so I can't dd it because of changed drivers etc.

    All help is much appreciated. Thanks!


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Woonsocket, RI USA

    Re: Copy Ubuntu installation to another machine

    There are several ways to do this. One that seems to be popular these days is Clonezilla. You'll probably need to run it from an emergency disc on the target system, though. Also, the hardware differences could cause problems, particularly for things like the boot loader and /etc/fstab configurations.

    A less drastic approach is to copy your user configuration files by copying over the contents of /home/{user} (where {user} is your username) and/or your system configuration files by copying over all of /etc (except for /etc/fstab and perhaps /etc/X11/xorg.conf). Doing this will replicate your settings, but won't copy over installed programs; you'll need to use apt-get, Synaptic, or whatever to add/delete packages to your satisfaction.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    SW Forida
    Ubuntu 16.04 Xenial Xerus

    Re: Copy Ubuntu installation to another machine

    You can make a list of all your installed apps:

    or using synaptic

    sudo cp /etc/apt/sources.list ~/sources.list.backup
    Otherwise if you have added any PPAs or other sources, this tip won't work.
    generate new sources file

    I had been using my portable while in FL and want to copy all my additions back to my desktop so I did this to read them back in after exporting on the portable:
    431 dpkg --set-selections < ubuntu-filesport2010Mar
    432 sudo dpkg --set-selections < ubuntu-filesport2010Mar
    434 sudo apt-get -y update
    435 sudo apt-get update
    436 sudo apt-get dselect-upgrade
    437 history
    For more info on UEFI boot install & repair - Regularly Updated :
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to change to [Solved] when/if answered completely.

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