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Thread: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

  1. #1
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    How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    I have been installing every update and every upgrade (regular and LTS both) as soon as they are released for about 8-10 years on same machine which I use as desktop/media server/htpc/print server/compiler. Basically it does everything.
    I wonder when does it make sense to just wipe everything and do fresh install?
    Does the junk build up? I don't mean the logs. But old obsolete stuff? Does my system keep using older version?

    As you can imagine, I have 10 years worth of customizations and software installed on it and it's very hard to get that list somewhere in my system.
    So, is the fresh install worth it? Or should I just keep upgrading on the same OS?

    How do you guys manage?

    Not that it should matter from hardware side, but I am running core2quad, 8 gigs ram and AMD 7770 vid card. HD space is no problem.

  2. #2
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    I would say as long as it's not broke don't fix it. If your system is running as it should why attempt to fix anything or changes OS's, you're one of the lucky ones

    I don't change OS's to often unless there's something terribly wrong an I am unable to fix it I'll keep the current distribution for as long as I can. Don't get me wrong, I always have the latest distribution and LTS release but never just wipe a OS just to clean house, grant you there are times I know this must be done to make things run as they should but I always keep things running as they should so I don't have to change
    Last edited by RobGoss; April 15th, 2017 at 01:08 AM.

  3. #3
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    I used to do that but felt like a bug tester after awhile. I now stick to LTS releases so I might re-install once every 5 years or something. Even when a new LTS comes out I like to wait for it to settle in have all it's quirks fixed. I prefer stable to new.
    Ubuntu 16.04 x64, Core i7 4770k, 8Gb RAM, Nvidia Gtx 650, Sandisk Extreme 120 SSD.

    https://reddingcomputer.wordpress.com/

  4. #4
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    You should really listen to this:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3zpgQpdy_fI

    Short lesson: If it works, don't fix it!

    On my Desktop/Server I've been using 16.04 since alfa... But on my laptops I've been skipping and bopping and hopping all over the Distro's. Until I listened to this. Call it religion, crazy or common sense, he has a good point!

    I will however still install PPA's for the software I feel I need ro update, like MESA drivers if you Play or Openshot if you edit video etc. But the base = If it works, dont change it!
    10+ years ago I ran Gentoo, safe to say I was unemployed an had no wife/children...

  5. #5
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    I am more curious from the performance point of view. Does fresh install perform better over stack of upgrades (about 12-14 ubuntu versions)? If so, by how much?
    As I need to weigh it against personalizing all my stuff again which would take me some time. And some of the packages are not even available any more (like pysdm).
    The reason I keep upgrading is mainly for security patching, kernel updates, drivers and multimedia fixes (audio specifically). And I fortunately, upgrades haven't broken things for me. In fact it's other way around. I see improvements. This is my personal experience, others might have experienced differently.

  6. #6
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    @izznogooood. That's a good video for someone who is looking to get into linux.
    I am on the other hand, been using Ubuntu that's it. Once in a while I get interested in some other distro which I install in virtual env. But it's Ubuntu for me all the way unless something drastic happens.
    This question is more focused on upgrades over fresh install (same OS/ distro).

  7. #7
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    Performing and in-place upgrade can leave cruft and outdated settings and files in place. Since I only install LTS I always perform a clean install. I have had problems in the past with in-place upgrades especially when major changes have been made in the next version like Grub2, Upstart, etc.

    No one can tell you which is best for you. I can only share how I do it and why. You have to decide what is best for you.
    Ubuntu 16.04 x64, Core i7 4770k, 8Gb RAM, Nvidia Gtx 650, Sandisk Extreme 120 SSD.

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  8. #8
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    Quote Originally Posted by mooreted View Post
    Performing and in-place upgrade can leave cruft and outdated settings and files in place. Since I only install LTS I always perform a clean install. I have had problems in the past with in-place upgrades especially when major changes have been made in the next version like Grub2, Upstart, etc.

    No one can tell you which is best for you. I can only share how I do it and why. You have to decide what is best for you.
    +1
    I also like my LTS a fresh start (Clean Install)
    But as a tester I have one partition that I keep rolling to the next Development cycle....but I also now clean the cruft on occasion to avoid false bugs.
    It just boils down to experience that you acquire...and your personal preference.
    Determine the Direction....Applaud the Spirit
    How to use [/Code Tags]

  9. #9
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    I am on the other hand, been using Ubuntu that's it. Once in a while I get interested in some other distro which I install in virtual env. But it's Ubuntu for me all the way unless something drastic happens.
    And that's OK trying other distributions that's how you learn and get to see what's new, but you need at least one stable machine as your primary go to computer which I have and it runs Ubuntu 16.04.2 and runs like a champ

  10. #10
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    Re: How often do you do clean install instead of upgrade?

    You have been lucky so far. Don't take it as a sign that you always will.

    I would install 16.04.2 in a dual boot, setting all your software packages up for testing. When everything works then you can move your personal files and let the old install go.
    Bringing old hardware back to life. About problems due to upgrading.
    Please visit Quick Links -> Unanswered Posts
    Don't use this space for a list of your hardware. It only creates false hits in the search engines.

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