September 19th, 2003, 13:30
Upgrading OpenBSD

Now when OpenBSD 3.4 is released on the first of November the issue of upgrading productions systems raises.

How do you do it without any markable downtime?

Upgrading the base system could be done by extracting the tarballs relative to / and installing a new kernel. Then you would have to use mergemaster to ensure /etc and /var are up to date.

But what about the installed ports and the configuration of those? How do you handle upgrading those?

Any idea of how to upgrade productions systems and references to material concerning this issue would be appreciated. Explanations of how you upgrade your systems would also be appreciated.

This is an issue that all users of OpenBSD have to handle one day Ė advanced users as well as newbies.

September 19th, 2003, 14:14
that's a good question chaos. Actually we have a private forum here on S.E. where we we just started talking about the upcoming upgrade.

Anyways, i'm actually going to swap the current box S.E. runs on with another. Though I realize that not everyone has this luxury.

I'm also partial to fork lift upgrades where I just replace the hard drive but again not everyone has this luxury and it does take some time. It's also not really practical to do that when several servers or production systems need upgrading.

I have a couple of OBSD workstations and upon the release of 3.4 I fully intend to check out the new tool that was posted on deadly a while back, debardage

I think it is still under heavy development at this time but, the more people that use this and report their findings the better off the tool will be in the long run. This seems to have the *most* potential of all the current tools for upgrading.

Anyone else care to share here?

September 19th, 2003, 16:33
If you are i386 then you need to redo the ports too since the change to elf. This is going to be a binary upgrade on x86 this time but looks good after that. The other platforms have already been switched so you are good to go if you are running sparc64, macppc, etc.

I tend to do the forklift upgrade on my firewall so I can roll back to the previous hd/install if I have issues. I had a drive go bad on my upgrade to 3.3 and I just threw the snapshot hd back in until I got another drive for it. Sometimes this works for production boxes and sometimes this can be unreasonable.

September 21st, 2003, 18:30
Especially if you donít have direct access to the machine or it is difficult because of the distance between you and the machines.

Remote upgrading of OpenBSD to 3.4 isnít made easier by a new boot block (version 2.02)

The switch to the ELF executable format on i386 architecture forces you to also upgrade the ports at the same time Ė you canít delay this until you get some more time.

How are you going to handle the upgrade?

Debardage surly looks interesting, but can you also upgrade machines remote using this?

Isnít there anyone else who wan to share there opinion and/or hints on this subject?

September 21st, 2003, 23:15
Remote upgrading of OpenBSD to 3.4 isnít made easier by a new boot block (version 2.02)

This isn't a tradical change but your point is well taken for remote machines you do not have physical access to upgrading will be rough.

Isnít there anyone else who wan to share there opinion and/or hints on this subject?

I've given you my initial thoughts.

I haven't been able to CVSup my 3.3 stable test boxes to the 3.4 current branch at all. Builds fail every time. I'm not sure about this perhaps someone else will confirm but a CVS upgrade to 3.4 release from 3.3 stable may not even be possible with the a.out switch. Like I said I don't know that to be fact perhaps someone else can clarify that point.

Upgrading OpenBSD has always been an issue. The is no cut and dry upgrade path. Typically I've done what I've already posted. Though I have also setup make release boxes and upgraded that way. |Mini0n| wrote a how-to a while back that covers make release you might want to check it out.

P.S. - It's been real slow on the boards this past weekend. I'm sure some of the other guys running OBSD will post info on their upgrade process this coming week.

September 21st, 2003, 23:46
The upgrade from a.out to elf is going to probably take some cross-compiling skills that I don't have yet. Some of the discussions I've seen suggest that it might be easier to cross compile from a platform that is already elf (sparc64, alpha, macppc, etc.) than to try to go from a.out to elf.

While the whole cross-compile process intrigues me, I think I'll stick with a binary upgrade this time around.

September 29th, 2003, 12:48
Hope to help you.

September 29th, 2003, 12:58
Hey thanks for th link zh

Welcome to Screaming Electron BTW! Nice to see another new face!