Monthly Archives: April 2011

HOWTO: Upgrade Debian Lenny (5.0) to Debian Squeeze (6.0) on Rackspace Cloud Servers

I recently posted on how to update Debian for servers and its intricacies, I have since been able to document the process for Rackspace and this guide also works for Virtuozzo or OpenVZ VPS’ where you don’t have direct control over the kernel from your VPS so here goes.

strong>Disclaimer: please test this yourself first on a NON PRODUCTION SERVER. this may or may not work with other server providers but is specifically tailored to the Rackspace system, I do not guarantee its results outside of my tested system (Rackspace Cloud Server US DC from a stock Debian Lenny install).

I have found that on current Rackspace templates the archive key for squeeze has yet to be installed on the template so its best to start by updating the keyring to prevent GPG errors, I always recommend to start by running an apt-get update but this may not successfully complete so you may need to start with:

apt-get install debian-archive-keyring

you may also need to accept the GPG error temporarily, alternatively you can get the squeeze GPG key from and adding it into apt by running:

wget && apt-key add archive-key-6.0.asc

after this we can continue the step of updating our Debian install to Squeeze, to continue we must first update our sources.list file:

nano /etc/apt/sources.list

i recommend cleaning out the old list completely if this is a stock install otherwise replace the default Debian mirrors with:

deb squeeze main
deb-src squeeze main

deb squeeze/updates main
deb-src squeeze/updates main

deb squeeze-updates main
deb-src squeeze-updates main

remembering to update the mirror URL’s to ones closer to you if not using the UK Rackspace cloud.

Update the package lists.

apt-get update

Install locales update (to stop lots of annoying Locales errors while upgrading).

apt-get install locales

Then the final upgrade.

apt-get dist-upgrade

When you are asked for options.

Change to dash – doesn’t matter which is chosen this can be whatever you prefer.

Chainload grub 2 – NO.

Change to dependency based sequencing (i selected both and its fine).

Restart services just hit enter.

Reboot for good luck (Isn’t actually needed because kernel is more up to date than Debian and not updated during the upgrade but better to eliminate issues ahead of crunch time).


Sit back and Enjoy!