Last weekend I’ve decided to update my netbook, an MSI Wind U100 clone labeled Advent, to the latest Ubuntu version (Intrepid Ibex). While on theory everything should have been simple, the reality is I had a ton of problems.
So lets start with updating from Ubuntu 8.04 to Ibex. First you should backup your home directory to an USB stick. Also copy xorg.conf to a safe place in case things go wrong.
Start a terminal in graphic mode (press alt+f2 and type xterm). Become root:
Type your password and when you get the root prompt (#) type:
You should get a new window like this one
Press “Upgrade” and answer the questions. This was the easy part, after update-manager would have finished running I should have been a happy user running Ubuntu Intrepid, right? Wrong!
I went out to town to drink some beer since it was weekend and left the update-manager to do its job. When I got back home, surprise: I didn’t plug the netbook to a power source and battery was empty, netbook offline. Nice … Pressed the power on button and crossed fingers.
After 3-4 minutes the reality unveiled, upgrade didn’t finished OK so netbook wasn’t entering graphic mode and I’ve got a ton of failed services and errors. A quick look showed that the file system was mounted read-only. Time to repair all that mess as I didn’t want to reinstall the whole system because I’m a lazy person.
Recovering after disaster
Ctr+Alt+F1 to get to first text console. Login with your username and password. Become root:
As root remount the file system so it can be used:
mount / -o remount
If you have more partitions do so for each of them (replace / with their mount point).
Switch to run level 3:
When you are running in run level 3 type:
dpkg –configure -a
This should restart/fix the upgrade process from where it stopped. It will ask you if you want to replace your custom config files with new ones. I answered No. When it’s done restart the netbook (use telinit 6). Make it shutdown even if you have to switch it off from power button.
When it’s online again you should have a working graphic mode. If not, try to replace your xorg.conf with your backup and restart gdm with:
Probably you won’t be having the wireless working so plug a network cable and manually reconfigure your NIC:
sudo ifconfig eth0 192.168.1.113/24
sudo route add default gw 192.168.1.1
In the above example 192.168.1.113 is netbook IP address, /24 is the netmask (equivalent to 255.255.255.0) and 192.168.1.1 is the gateway (the IP of router)
Run the following commands as root to fix all the missing dependencies:
apt-get -f install
Restart the system and everything should be ok now.