From Lucid To Precise: An Upgrade Diary



This upgrade did not go smoothly.  Sure, all of my personal data survived, and all the data and configuration files for my applications made a successful transition, but this upgrade should have just worked.  In hindsight, it’s bothersome that I was impressed by simple things like mail continuing to work.  There should be nothing impressive about an installer simply loading config files from my home directory that were already there.  The notion that something like that would not work is rediculous, though in the back of my mind, I would expect it not too.

If an average user upgrades from one LTS release to another, after the system asks the user to do so, the expectation should be a working system.  Especially Ubuntu, which is more of an end-user product than just a community effort.  If the average user logs into the newly updated system and is presented with nothing but a black screen, the system is just broken and it is unacceptable.  Especially within the portrait of stability that Ubuntu tries to frame for potential users.  An average user cannot be expected to know how to perform detective work via the command line to even gain clues as to what the heck has happened to their system.

There were some pluses to the install.  Even though Unity and Compiz is broken, Unity 2D is a real performer.  In the extra space on this hard drive, I’ve tried some previous betas of 12.04 Precise, and even in Unity 2D the performance on the machine was abysmal.  This system is perfectly usable with Unity 2d.  I like how far Unity has come and how snappy it’s gotten.  I’ve seriously considered moving to it completely on my desktop, and I will as soon as Gimp 2.8, if ever, is released.

As for running Precise in 5 year old hardware?  Sure, though you might be better served by something a little more lightweight like Lubuntu.

User discretion is advised.

About Dean Howell

Aside from being a huge Sega fan, Dean is an LPIC certified Linux professional with over a decade experience. In addition to spending his free time burning through the classics from Sega and evangelizing open source, he's also the editor-in-cheif of The Powerbase.
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  • Scribe63

    They did specify in the release notes, thatt there are issues with a 10.04 to 12.04 upgrade, and not to do an upgrade until the 12.04.01 point release

  • John M.

    I have often heard or read the comment that “Ubuntu just works” (although I hear it less and less every year). I think that statement glosses over its bugs and deficiencies. For example, I’m still using Ubuntu 10.04 (Gnome) on my main machine at home. If there is more than one profile logged on, and one tries to log out of one’s profile, to this day the system goes to a blank screen that is impossible to recover from. That should not happen, especially two years after release. Oddly, it was fixed for a short while, then the problem returned. There are lots of complaints about this bug in the forums, but it still persists.

    When I upgrade to 12.04, I fully suspect that something else very annoying will take it’s place because there isn’t enough care given to quality.

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  • Gonzalo

    Did you have to input some new repository, like “deb…… precise main” ? Or the system checked and offered you to upgrade?
    I’m asking because I have a modified version of 10.04 and the upgrade doe snot happen!
    sudo do-release-upgrade
    Checking for a new ubuntu release
    No new release found

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  • Henry_mao

    Exactly the same problem, Nvidia 6100 native driver keeps crashing on me.

  • Todd

    Just got a new computer with 12.04 installed by default. I’m SO frustrated and disappointed by Unity and Precise in general. Seriously considering going back to Lucid up until it absolutely doesn’t work any more. It had pretty much everything I could hope for in a distro.

    • Kobina Jamieson

      if unity isn’t working for you, i recommend kde!