Friday, November 6, 2009

Fedora install needs to be quicker.

Upgrading my system from Fedora 8 to something more recent has been on my todo list for awhile and last night I finally took the plunge. I had already downloaded iso images for Fedora 10 and 11 so I was ready to do the install from the DVDs. I couldn't go straight from 8 to 11 because there has been some significant changes in the distribution so I had to first upgrade to 10 first.

The upgrade to 10 was pretty smooth but as with my previous experience, I had to manually clean up some dependency issues before I can do the first 'yum update'. I expected the upgrade from 10 to 11 to be smooth but I actually ran into more issues. Firstly, there was some problems on the first reboot where Fedora couldn't start X. It didn't tell me there was a problem and instead just hung on a blinking cursor. Booting into level 3 ('init 3') allowed me to get a command prompt where I could fix the various dependency issues again and do a 'yum update'.

While the hung screen is pretty serious (an average user might not be able to figure out the work-around), what annoyed me the most is how long it takes to do the first 'yum update'. That's because it updates EVERYTHING. First there was the 2 GB of download then the time to calculate dependency issues before it actually starts the update. What's the point of doing a DVD install if it is going to download everything again?

It would be nicer if there was an option of first download the system updates and then do application level updates in the background once the system is already up.

1 comment:

  1. Both yum and PackageKit can do selective updates for only security fixes. Also of note, yum install yum-presto is likely to have saved a lot of time as well.