Upgrade to Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron Alpha 4 - Adventures in Switching to Linux

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Upgrade to Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron Alpha 4

After reading the Ars Technica review of Ubuntu 8.04 alpha 4, I decided it was time I gave it a spin. There is some cool new stuff (and also stuff from alpha3, alpha2 and alpha1 releases). My first serious introduction (ie - not running it from the Live CD) to Ubuntu was starting with one of the Beta releases of 7.10 so I don't think I'll have any problem running this alpha. I am only running it on my laptop which I don't use for any serious work anyway. By the way, the one issue I did have with the 7.10 beta didn't get fixed for the release as I recall.

I opted for upgrading online instead of via the CD image. The main reason for that is because my disc drive on my laptop doesn't read CDs anymore, only DVDs. I initially installed 7.10 from DVD. Also, installing online is a lot easier than downloading a 700MB file, burning it to CD and then installing it.

So to kick off the install, just run the command: update-manager -d

And then about an hour and 25 minutes later...
And about an hour into the install I get an error.
It all went down hill from there. I ignored that error but a few packages later got a dialog to restart "ntpd". After that failed, the install failed completely. (No screen shots because that didn't work anymore either.) I then restarted and the file system had errors. fsck fixed them, eventually, and I was able to boot. The install didn't work at this point either. I just got stuck on the brown Ubuntu background. Restarting into failsafe Gnome worked but my wireless didn't. After lots of other little work arounds and hooking up to my wired lan, I got the install completed and working.

After all of this, my stupid bcm43xx wireless card which requires "restricted drivers" didn't work, rendering my laptop useless as a laptop. Argh. I guess I am not ready for the Ubuntu 8.04 alpha, at least on my laptop. I'll likely give it a go when we get to a beta stage. The final will be out in 2 - 3 months anyway.

I'm using the screwing up my system as an excuse to try out Fedora 8. I haven't installed Fedora since release 5 and never installed it on my laptop. Fingers crossed the wireless works! If not I guess back to Ubuntu 7.10 I will go or maybe I will try a differnt distro.

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