So, here’s a humbling, humiliating and slightly funny follow-up to my last blog post:
I’ve always done my due diligence in making sure upgrades go smoothly. As a result, I have a habit of tirelessly poring over release notes and the “known issues” section therein. However, I got burned this week when I failed to read all of the release notes.
CentOS has a documentation page for the 5.0 series. And as of this writing, the documentation page links to a document called Release Notes. It does not, however, link to a completely different document that also is called Release Notes. I had read the release notes on the documentation page, but not the CentOS-specific release notes document which was only linked from the front page. I suppose it’s my fault for not noticing that 5.0 through 5.3 all have CentOS release notes links pointing to the wiki, and thinking that the wiki might be a good place to look.
Upon asking about my upgrade issues, the always-helpful folks in #centos berated me for not Googling correctly for the release notes, accused me of trolling when I pointed out that I did find (and read) the release notes but that there was a documentation problem, and asked me why I would dare to criticize the free efforts done by a volunteer in maintaining the documentation. Obviously, after finding the only document called “Release Notes” listed under CentOS’s documentation for 5.4, on the page where this documentation would normally be, the perfectly reasonable, thinking man’s approach to the problem would be to Google for CentOS release notes.
After much soul-searching and reflection, and a few minutes spent filing a bug report about the documentation page, I did find the answers I was looking for in the CentOS-specific release notes tucked away on their wiki:
- CentOS 5.4 includes glibc and kernel updates. For yum updates the recommended procedure is:
yum clean all
yum update glibc\*
yum update yum\* rpm\* python\*
yum clean all
shutdown -r now
So, here’s the morals of the story:
- If you try to run the whole upgrade at once using yum upgrade, there is a good chance that you will break your system going from 5.3 to 5.4. Follow the documentation, and update your packages in the order given above, and you should be just fine.
- If you think you’re missing an important piece of documentation, you probably are.
Did you ever have one of those weeks where everything you learned seemed to be choreographed into place? I think that I’m learning much broader lessons this week about the nature and the danger of assumptions, as the Lone Sysadmin would tell you about me. (Bob Plankers, it turns out, is very much not a “goon,” and one can make a very big ass of themselves by assuming other people are familiar with the other meanings of such a word.)