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Hans 8th October 2008 10:49

Howto upgrade from Debian 4 (Etch) to Debian 5 (Lenny)
You probably noticed by now, that Debian GNU/Linux 5.0 aka "Lenny" hasn't been released in September. The reason: too many bugs need to be fixed.

When Lenny has been released, you can upgrade from Etch to Lenny according the steps below:
(According the official Debian documentation, these 5 steps describe the safest way to do that job).

Make a backup of your current Debian Etch system.

Change the content of the file /etc/apt/sources.list.
This means that you need to change "etch" into "lenny".
So in my case i have to change:

deb etch main
deb-src etch main

deb etch/updates main contrib
deb-src etch/updates main contrib


deb lenny main
deb-src lenny main

deb lenny/updates main contrib
deb-src lenny/updates main contrib

if you use "stable" instead of "etch", your system will make use of the packages provided by Debian Lenny from the moment on that Lenny gets stable!

Execute the command: aptitude update
to get information about new packages

Execute the command: aptitude install dpkg aptitude apt
to install the newest package management

Execute the command: aptitude full-upgrade

The Debian Devel anounce

Hans 14th October 2008 10:02

I tested this method on my testing server with Debian Etch and ISPConfig
The upgrade to Debian Lenny was succesful. :)
Don't perform this upgrade on a production server until Lenny is stable.
It seams that ISPConfig 3 runs fine on Lenny.

PermaNoob 2nd December 2008 00:40

Hans, how do I make sure I update etch instead of stable?

Never mind, I found it:

/etc/apt/sources.list should have (or another server if you're not near Essen)


deb etch main non-free contrib

deb etch/updates main contrib non-free


Actually, when Lenny goes stable, it would be a good idea to put a "heads up" notice in the forums before noobs like me destroy their servers ;-)

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