Yum upgrade from F8 to F8 with KDE desktop - installation notes

Claude Jones cjones at levitjames.com
Mon Jun 23 01:56:41 UTC 2008

Maybe this might help others:
I'm starting from a Fedora 8 box that's been in continuous use since F6 using 
yum upgrade to move up through each distro version - my desktop is KDE though 
Gnome is also installed - I had installed the early beta packages of KDE4 
from kde-redhat on this machine and had some problems, so I'd removed them.
Probably left some detritus behind, but, the box was running smoothly with no 
major issues - the machine is a dual-core with 2GB ram, and my IP connection 
is a 3mb/s DSL - the whole process took about three hours with a little 
additional cleanup the next morning - currently, I'm typing these notes with 
my newly upgraded system and I have no major issues - I use the proprietary 
nVidia drivers from Freshrpms, and I had to install the latest nVidia driver 
from Freshrpms along the way, which I did right after the installation of the 
kernel in step 5; once I did that, the dkms package (which gets installed from 
Freshrpms as a dependency to the nVidia driver) took care of building my 
kernel-module for the new kernel on the next reboot with no intervention on my 
part. Building the nVidia kernel module adds about 15-20 seconds to booting 
but requires no user intervention. It only happens when a new kernel is 

I post this because I've always found the process of collecting all the 
relevant info to do a yum upgrade a bit daunting. There is no guarantee this 
will work on your machine, and I would strongly suggest you wait a spell 
before trying this, to see if any of the more knowledgeable folk on this list 
spot any mistakes or omissions in my procedure. 

1) Download fedora 9 release rpm: here's one link
OR http://tinyurl.com/6yv9gd

2) Use your preferred method to install the above file:
rpm -Uvh fedora-release-9-2.noarch.rpm
from a root command prompt works for me

3) Navigate to /etc/yum.repos.d and use your preferred text editor to open 
each *.repo file in there; you want to examine each mirror list or baseurl 
line. If they are using dollar sign symbols to indicate version and 
architecture, you're good (example: 
debug-$releasever&arch=$basearch) - leave things as they are. Some repos may 
use specific version numbers (example: 
In each case like this, you need to make sure that the number right before the 
/i386 is a '9' -- I didn't have to modify any of my current *.repo files but I 
did have to modify my smart channels as described just above.

4) Reboot, and when the 'Grub' line appears in your upper left hand screen tap 
your space bar; that should present you a list of kernels. Highlight the 
topmost kernel and press the letter 'a'; that will open a command line with 
that kernel line and the cursor at the end of the line; press the spacebar and 
then enter the number '3' then press enter. 
You will boot to a command prompt. 
Log in as 'root'

5) Run 'yum update kernel' - for me this resulted in a clean install of the 
latest F9 kernel along with a couple of dependent packages - it also removed a 
couple of kernel modules in the process which I allowed (I happen to run the 
nVidia drivers and this was related to that - after installing the latest 
kernel is a good time to install the nVidia proprietary drivers from freshrpms 
if you use them - see opening paragraph up above for more regarding nVidia)

6) Repeat step 4 and run yum update; in my case this produced a ton of 
activity and then a failure message due to dependency issues; read the screen 
carefully at this point! Remove packages that can't install due to dependency 
problems with 'yum remove [name of package]' - in my case, I had to remove 
compat-gcc-34-c++, aquamarine, tellico, all beryll packages, mozilla-totem-
xine, and kdebase (your removals won't be exactly the same); I had to remove 
kdebase because of issues with a package called extragear-plasma that was 
failing due to dependencies. That took a little research, but was easily 
figured out with the help of google. This was some of the detritus left over 
from my trying the early KDE4 beta referred to above. 

7) Eventually, you should get to a state where the update should proceed; mine 
required 1393 package updates and installs plus some removals

8) Repeat step 4; you want to rename /etc/X11/xorg.conf - I used 
mv xorg.conf xorg.conf.F8 to simply rename it and take it out of the picture 
(xorg.conf used to be the configuration file for the xserver but it's no 
longer used and keeping the file active can introduce font issues 
that prevent many programs from opening)

9) Try a normal reboot 

This is not intended as a definitive method, but, was derived from a careful 
read of this webpage: http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/YumUpgradeFaq
plus reference to various posts from this mailing list. There are new tools 
out there, and this may not be the best way to upgrade, but, having limited 
time, and being familiar with this general process, I chose to go ahead this 
way rather than investigate preupgrade and other methods I've heard reference 

One last note: I find the latest improvements to KDE4 to have resolved most of 
the major issues I had with the first releases, and look forward to the 
restoration of various functions that didn't get in yet. I'm running the 
version that is made available from kde-redhat-unstable currently at 4.0.83
Claude Jones
Brunswick, MD, USA

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