Debian Unstable gets X.org
Posted by Steve on Wed 13 Jul 2005 at 17:10
Debian has now made the transition to the X.org installation of the X11 Window system. If you're running sid/etch you should be able to upgrade now.
The transition had previously been on hold until Sarge was released - as it was judged too major a change to add to the release at the last minute.
Now Sarge is out Debian development continues and one of the most anticipated changes is upon us. (Other changes are also occurring such as the C++ ABI upgrade).
Before starting the upgrade to X.org it's important to do two things:
- Switch to a console as a paranoid safety measure. If something goes wrong, or X gets restarted you don't want to leave your upgrade in an inconsistent state.
- Take a backup of /etc/X11 in case you experience problems.
The backup can be something as simple as running:
cp -R /etc/X11 /etc/X11-old
The upgrade will attempt to automatically migrate your XFree86 configuration file to /etc/X11/xorg.conf, and in my case worked perfectly. Still better safe than sorry!
Once you've done those two things you should be ready to proceed. As always the first thing to do is update your list of available packages:
If you wish you can use aptitude instead, I know that I should promote that more.
With that out of the way the installation is started by running:
apt-get install xserver-xorg
This gave me the following output:
The following extra packages will be installed: libxau6 libxdmcp6 lsb-base x11-common xfree86-common xserver-common Suggested packages: configlet-frontends libglide2 Recommended packages: mdetect xresprobe The following packages will be REMOVED: xserver-xfree86 The following NEW packages will be installed: libxau6 libxdmcp6 lsb-base x11-common xserver-xorg The following packages will be upgraded: xfree86-common xserver-common 2 upgraded, 5 newly installed, 1 to remove and 14 not upgraded. Need to get 7437kB of archives.
As you can see the xserver-xfree86 package is scheduled for removal, as the two conflict.
After downloading the packages from the network you'll be asked which server you wish to run by default by debconf. Choose the xserver-org - as the other server will be removed.
That was literally all I had to do. There were several messages displayed about migrating the server's configuration which appeared to be completely successful:
xserver-xorg config warning: migrating xserver-xfree86 templates to xserver-xorg.
Other diagnostic messages also seemed to indicate the upgrade was occuring without any problems:
Adding system startup for /etc/init.d/x11-common ... /etc/rcS.d/S70x11-common -> ../init.d/x11-common update-rc.d: /etc/init.d/xfree86-common exists during rc.d purge (continuing) Removing any system startup links for /etc/init.d/xfree86-common ... /etc/rcS.d/S70xfree86-common
At this point the upgrade was complete, and the only thing left to do was to stop the currently running old installation of xserver-xfree86. The quick way to do this would be to simply reboot, although I wanted to do it manually to make sure it worked as expected.
This step will differ if you're using KDE, in which case you'll need to use "/etc/init.d/kdm stop". If you're using another login manager such as wdm, or xdm you'll need to adjust accordingly.
Once that's done you can restart the manager by repeating the command with start instead of stop:
Everything came up as expected, and the upgrade was complete.
You can test that you have the correct versoin of X running by issuing the following command from the console:
The output should look something like this:
X Window System Version 6.8.2 (Debian 6.8.2.dfsg.1-1 20050709222802 email@example.com) Release Date: 9 February 2005 X Protocol Version 11, Revision 0, Release 6.8.2 Build Operating System: Linux 2.6.11-1-686 i686 [ELF] Current Operating System: Linux mystery 2.6.11-1-k7 #1 Mon Jun 20 21:26:23 MDT 2005 i686 Build Date: 09 July 2005 Before reporting problems, check http://wiki.X.Org to make sure that you have the latest version. Module Loader present OS Kernel: Linux version 2.6.11-1-k7 (dannf@firetheft) (gcc version 3.3.6 (Debian 1:3.3.6-6)) #1 Mon Jun 20 21:26:23 MDT 2005
After the upgrade you should make sure you don't have any problems, and then see if you need to tidy up any obsolete packages. I discovered I also no longer needed the libxft1 package by using deborphan to find obsolete packages.
The upgrade was painless, and things look even better than before. It's hard to know if I should be expecting a speedup or not, so I'm not going to claim massive gains.