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Archiving/Restoring the kernel.

Archiving/Restoring the kernel.

Archiving/Restoring the kernel.

(OP)
Hi folks,

I currently run Opensuse 10.2, and I generally have no problems with it, with the exception of kernel updates.  The update manager frequently prompts me with new updates, but if I install the the latest kernerl, kernel security patch and source, the computer fails to boot.  It completely dies.

After some research, I discovered that people with my particular hardware (more specifically, the motherboard) are the people with the problem.  Now it has been some months since I tried to update the system with kernel updates, so I'm wondering if changes have been made, and it's worth another attempt.  After many months, the system is as I like it, and i really don't want to end up reinstalling everything if and when it goes tits-up.

Bottom line: Is there a way to backup or archive the current system configuration and kernel, so that if it fails I am able to restore it to how it once was?  Please bear in mind that I am fairly new to Linux.

Thank you in advance for any help.

Russell.

Carlsberg don't run I.T. departments, but if they did they'd probably be more fun.

RE: Archiving/Restoring the kernel.

I don't know the OpenSuse environment, but I can speak from how Debian, Redhat, CentOS, Fedora and a couple of others deal with this...

The boot manager (grub, lilo, etc.) for your system generally has a configuration file in which one OR MORE kernel images are profiled for use.  One of them is the default.  There is also a timer/time-out at boot up that controls the amount of time the console user may intervene in the launch of the default kernel to use any of the other kernels in the configuration.

This feature is most directly aimed at your case, where the "new" kernel may crap up the system and you need to revert.  Obviously reverting is hard to do if the system is hung up on the new kernel, so you re-re-boot and keyboard your way into selecting the last known good kernel.

Try to figure out which boot loader you are using and understand its configuration.  Make sure you leave the "wait"/"timeout" value to something like 5-10 seconds so you can step in from the console and choose your kernel.

HTH,
D.

D.E.R. Management - IT Project Management Consulting
http://www.dermanagement.com/

RE: Archiving/Restoring the kernel.

(OP)
Hi, thedaver.  Thank you for your reply.

You are indeed correct, I am given the choice of two kernels to boot from.  Unfortunately the system fails horribly regardless of which one I pick.  This is one of the reasons I am so loathed to update the system.

Russell.

Carlsberg don't run I.T. departments, but if they did they'd probably be more fun.

RE: Archiving/Restoring the kernel.

So you have one good option and two bad options?

How do you define "fails horribly"??  How far does the boot sequence get?

do you have any special devices connected to the machine?

are you running with more than one monitor/display?

are you booting to runlevel 5 (GUI) or runlevel 3 (text)?

D.E.R. Management - IT Project Management Consulting
http://www.dermanagement.com/

RE: Archiving/Restoring the kernel.

(OP)
Indeed.  It's not due to the devices, it's due to my particular motherboard, and has been mentioned by several other opensuse users.

In order to quote the exact error message, I'd have to do the update again.  Something I'm not willing to risk without a reliable way of getting the old kernel back and running.  I'm sure you can appreciate that.

Carlsberg don't run I.T. departments, but if they did they'd probably be more fun.

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