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 to Devuan ASCII

This document describes how to migrate to Devuan ASCII from Debian Jessie or Stretch. Currently migration to ASCII from Debian Jessie or Stretch is not straight forward if you use GNOME or network manager due to some held packages, and each respective migration is a little different but this should work round the issues in both cases.

Migrating from the GNOME desktop

Because there is no transitional package yet GNOME users will need to install xfce4 and slim manually. Choose slim as the default display manager when prompted.

root@debian:~# apt-get install xfce4 slim

Set the session manager to startxfce4 so that the new desktop can be used later.

root@debian:~# update-alternatives --config x-session-manager

Replacing network manager with wicd

For the migration we need to use wicd instead of network manager. Due to a compatibility problem with Debian, those migrating from Stretch remotely must use manual network configuration instead, otherwise you will lose access to the remote host during migration.

root@debian:~# apt-get install wicd

Make sure network manager is removed from the boot process.

root@debian:~# update-rc.d -f network-manager remove

Wireless connections should now be configured to automatically connect with wicd. Stop network manager before configuring your network.

root@debian:~# /etc/init.d/network-manager stop

Perform the migration

Devuan uses sysvinit by default so we will install this now.

root@debian:~# apt-get install sysvinit-core

A reboot is required to switch sysvinit to pid1 so we can remove systemd.

root@debian:~# reboot

We can now remove systemd without any complaints.

root@debian:~# apt-get purge systemd

Edit the sources.list file so that we can switch to the Devuan repositories.

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

Add the Devuan mirrors with the ASCII branch name. Comment out any other lines.

deb ascii main
deb ascii-updates main
deb ascii-security main
deb ascii-backports main

Update the package indexes so we can install the Devuan archive keyring.

root@debian:~# apt-get update

Install the Devuan keyring so packages can be authenticated from this point onwards.

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

Update the package indexes again so that they are authenticated with the keyring.

root@debian:~# apt-get update

Finally we can migrate to Devuan.

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

Post migration tasks

systemd components should now be removed from the system.

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

If you are not using D-Bus or xorg you might be able to remove libsystemd0.

root@devuan:~# apt-get purge libsystemd0

Purge any orphaned packages left over from your previous Debian install.

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

This is a good time to clean out old package archives left over from your Debian system.

root@devuan:~# apt-get autoclean

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