Devuan GNU+Linux is a free software operating system for your computer. Free software means you are free to use, copy and distribute, study, change the software, and share your modifications with the community.

Migrate from Debian Buster to Beowulf

These instructions are for migrating from the Debian Buster release only. When migrating to Beowulf the instructions are specific to the Debian release you’re coming from and should be followed only as written.

As of Beowulf you will lose the network-manager package when migrating. The solution here is to use the wicd network manager but if you prefer manual network configuration this needs to be done before continuing.

The first step is to change the sources.list to point to the Beowulf repositories.

root@debian:~# editor /etc/apt/sources.list

Make your sources.list look like the one provided. Comment out all other lines.

deb beowulf main
deb beowulf-updates main
deb beowulf-security main
#deb beowulf-backports main

Now you have to update the package lists from the Beowulf repositories. Recent changes in APT mean this is not allowed but we can override this behaviour.

root@debian:~# apt-get update --allow-insecure-repositories

The Devuan keyring should now be installed so that packages can be authenticated.

root@debian:~# apt-get install devuan-keyring --allow-unauthenticated

Update the package lists again so that packages are authenticated from here on in.

root@debian:~# apt-get update

If you want to use the wicd network manager this needs to be installed now or the upgrade will fail.

root@debian:~# apt-get install wicd-gtk

Upgrade your packages so that you have the latest versions. Note that this does not complete the migration.

root@debian:~# apt-get upgrade

Once this is done eudev needs to be installed. Note that if you’re using Gnome it will be removed by this command, but can be installed again after migration.

root@debian:~# apt-get install eudev

The last command is known to cause package breaks but we will fix this as part of the migration process.

root@debian:~# apt-get -f install

A reboot is required to change sysvinit to pid1.

root@debian:~# reboot

Now you can perform the migration proper.

root@debian:~# apt-get dist-upgrade

We have migrated to Devuan so systemd related packages are not needed now.

root@devuan:~# apt-get purge systemd libnss-systemd

If you don’t have a desktop at this point you should install one now. The default in Devuan is XFCE.

root@devuan:~# apt-get install task-xfce-desktop

Or you can install Gnome instead if you want to continue using it.

root@devuan:~# apt-get install task-gnome-desktop

You can now remove any packages orphaned by the migration process, and any unusable archives left over from your Debian install.

root@devuan:~# apt-get autoremove --purge
root@devuan:~# apt-get autoclean

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