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Moved on to Bookworm


raymac46
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I was going to wait, but since Bullseye is now solidly entrenched as Debian stable, I decided to point my sources.list over to Bookworm. I am now back on Testing and so far so good. Nothing broken but I have got a far number of new packages so far.

This is on my Thinkpad T430 which isn't my main machine. So I can take a few chances.

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23 hours ago, raymac46 said:

So I can take a few chances.

 

I usually wait until Testing is frozen before I take a look at it. Do you think you'd like running Unstable more than Testing? And, have you ever used siduction?

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1 hour ago, saturnian said:

 

I usually wait until Testing is frozen before I take a look at it. Do you think you'd like running Unstable more than Testing? And, have you ever used siduction?

I did use Sid for a while before I got Arch, but I had a few screwups - and since my wife uses the Thinkpad on occasion I prefer Testing. Generally I stick with Testing right through the next release, then decide when I want to switch back.

I note that Siduction doesn't feature a GNOME desktop and although I could make do with LXQt I am happy to run GNOME in Debian. I have never felt the need to have a derivative Sid distro as I also have Arch. Nothing against Siduction but it just doesn't appeal to me.

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I'd probably go with sid instead of siduction, if I was going that route.

 

I think I've read that Testing can be more trouble than Unstable.

 

Arch has turned out to be so good, seems like a better deal for me than either sid or Testing.

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I have never had Testing break on me but it has happened with Sid. Where Testing is a bit dicey is that it doesn't get security updates as reliably as Stable or for that matter Unstable. But again I haven't had a problem there. If you ever encounter an update where a whole bunch of stuff is going to be removed that can be a sign of trouble, regardless of whether you have Sid or Testing.

I also wouldn't want to go with Testing in the hours or first days after its predecessor goes over to Stable. But if you track the change it isn't too bad. You then are Stable, and you can pick the time to head back to Testing. I stayed with Buster quite a long time. Not so this time.

Ubuntu and Linux Mint get their packages from Debian Testing so that encourages me.

Arch is designed as a rolling release from the get-go, unlike Debian where the objective is to eventually have a stable point release.

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3 hours ago, saturnian said:

I'd probably go with sid instead of siduction, if I was going that route.

 

I think I've read that Testing can be more trouble than Unstable.

 

Arch has turned out to be so good, seems like a better deal for me than either sid or Testing.

I think Ray explained Sid & Testing pretty good.  I'd only add something I was told, which stuck with me:  Sid is more likely to break, but also more likely to get fixed quickly.  Testing is less likely to break, but if it does, you'll wait longer for the fix.  Stable doesn't break by itself.....if Stable breaks, it's because you helped it.

 

I'm on Buster on my main machine, and I know Bullseye is stable now.  Part of the reason I switched from the 'buntus to Debian is because I hate re-installing every 3-5 years (support window), and I'm told Debian upgrades-in-place are smooth as can be.  Wondering if Ray can provide a brief overview of how to make that happen?

 

I'm in no rush to upgrade from Buster, as when I do, I'm gonna lose my right-click Fluxbox menus; but I am curious how Debian does it.  I've upgraded the 'buntus in-place before, but quickly learned that the 'buntus are best re-installed from scratch.  I'm counting on the Debian upgrade-in-place to be smooth!

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@HJ it is pretty easy. You just edit /etc/apt/sources.list and change your Main/Non-Free/Contrib repository from Bullseye to Bookworm. Before you do that if you are running Buster you would want to change all your Buster sources to Bullseye and sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade. You need to be on the latest stable version to switch to testing. You'll want to change both the package and source repositories.

Note you might have sources for backports, updates and security but just comment those out. The Bookworm security repository exists but is empty until Bookworm becomes the stable release. Backports you won't need obviously until the stable release.

When you have everything set sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade. You can also try sudo apt full-upgrade if you are feeling lucky. I also do sudo apt autoremove after a few update /upgrade cycles.

You can install Bullseye in a VM and practise the changes if you want to try it out painlessly. That is what I did before trying it on my Thinkpad.

 

https://wiki.debian.org/DebianTesting

Edited by raymac46
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ray@ray-debian-T430:~$ cat /etc/apt/sources.list





deb http://debian.mirror.rafal.ca/debian/ bookworm main non-free contrib
deb-src http://debian.mirror.rafal.ca/debian/ bookworm  main non-free contrib


# deb http://ftp.debian.org/debian bullseye-backports main

# deb http://debian.mirror.rafal.ca/debian/ bullseye-updates main non-free contrib
# deb-src http://debian.mirror.rafal.ca/debian/ bullseye-updates main non-free contrib

# deb http://security.debian.org bullseye-security main contrib non-free
# deb-src http://security.debian.org bullseye-security main contrib non-free
ray@ray-debian-T430:~$ 

 

Edited by raymac46
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2 hours ago, Hedon James said:

I'm in no rush to upgrade from Buster, as when I do, I'm gonna lose my right-click Fluxbox menus; but I am curious how Debian does it.  I've upgraded the 'buntus in-place before, but quickly learned that the 'buntus are best re-installed from scratch.  I'm counting on the Debian upgrade-in-place to be smooth!

 

Buster-to-Bullseye was my first time trying in-place upgrades in Debian. I simply followed the steps from the wiki. Why would you lose your right-click Fluxbox menus? Mine still work as usual in Bullseye.

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14 hours ago, raymac46 said:

@HJ it is pretty easy. You just edit /etc/apt/sources.list and change your Main/Non-Free/Contrib repository from Bullseye to Bookworm. Before you do that if you are running Buster you would want to change all your Buster sources to Bullseye and sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade. You need to be on the latest stable version to switch to testing. You'll want to change both the package and source repositories.

Note you might have sources for backports, updates and security but just comment those out. The Bookworm security repository exists but is empty until Bookworm becomes the stable release. Backports you won't need obviously until the stable release.

When you have everything set sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade. You can also try sudo apt full-upgrade if you are feeling lucky. I also do sudo apt autoremove after a few update /upgrade cycles.

You can install Bullseye in a VM and practise the changes if you want to try it out painlessly. That is what I did before trying it on my Thinkpad.

 

https://wiki.debian.org/DebianTesting

That seems simple enough.  Looking at your example from Bullseye to Bookworm, it looks even simpler if I'd be upgrading from Buster to Bullseye.

 

I've been through Ubuntu's automated "upgrade in place" processes, and it's usually smooth.  But over time, I started to notice unexpected quirks and hiccups.  Troubleshooting sessions on Ubuntu forums ultimately lead me to conclude that re-installation was the best solution, despite being the biggest PITA.  During my search to replace Ubuntu as my main distro, the thing that tipped the scale in Debian's favor was the repeated assurance from multiple sources that Debian upgrades were smooth, pain-free, and without residual issues.  One guy even scoffed at the notion of re-installation and told me he had been upgrading Debian in-place, starting with Lenny(?) all the way to Buster, with no issues.  One guy's experience may not be representative of everyone, but that would be the holy grail for me.  I'm just a little hesitant to believe, after my 10+/- years of Ubuntu experiences.  Debian has been wonderfully stable.  There's an old saying....."if it ain't broke, don't fix it".  But I'm gonna have to do that at some point...

 

I'll add you to the list of proponents who swear it's easy, with no residual issues!  😎

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13 hours ago, saturnian said:

 

Buster-to-Bullseye was my first time trying in-place upgrades in Debian. I simply followed the steps from the wiki. Why would you lose your right-click Fluxbox menus? Mine still work as usual in Bullseye.

REALLY?!!!  That would be excellent!  I'm on version 0.14.1 of LXQT in Buster; what version is in Bullseye?

 

I've written on this forum that I had an "issue" with an LXQT dev who removed the "right click root menu" module from PCManFM-QT, because the code was "inelegant."  I asked that he reconsider re-implementing that feature, cleaning up the code in an "elegant" manner if that was the reason for the deprecation; that removing features sounded a little too "Gnome" in my opinion.  I guess he took offense to that and offered the standard developer "superior being" reply:  if i wanted to offer code for inclusion, he'd be happy to consider the offering.  Otherwise, his course of action was the best way forward.  Although he did suggest that a workaround to consider was to uncheck the module in LXQT settings for PCManFM-QT to "manage desktop", which also includes wallpaper and icon placements.  I wondered, then, "why use LXQT", as one is essentially logging into a "naked WM" session with LXQT "skin".  Long story short....he was unconvinced and devs code for themselves, not for their users.

 

I noted that the rick-click menu disappeared shortly thereafter in updated Manjaro and Arch VMs.  I assumed it would disappear in all Debian versions after Buster.  If you still have in Bullseye, what version is Bullseye using?  I KNOW it disappeared in LXQT 0.16.  After that, I started looking into alternative solutions/workarounds.  THRILLED if that feature is still available in Bullseye!  I could stretch my usage for another 5-7 years?!!!

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Quote

I'll add you to the list of proponents who swear it's easy, with no residual issues!  😎

Well OK but I have to point out that I have had very few issues upgrading Linux Mint in situ to the next release over the years. I also upgraded Ubuntu once or twice without a fresh install, back in the day when wifi connection really sucked and it was a bear to reconfigure manually after a fresh installation.

That said, an upgrade with Debian has been the most painless.

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2 hours ago, raymac46 said:

@HJ sadly the version of LXQt in Bullseye (and Bookworm currently) is 0.16. Isn't that the one that gives you headaches?

That's the problematic version in Manjaro & Arch VMs.  I wonder if the right-click menus got re-instated after I left the forum?  Saturnian, are you SURE you have right-click root-menus in LXQT 0.16?  Openbox or Flux?

 

EDIT:  Just checked my Arch VM and LXQT is version 0.17 there.  I do NOT have right-click root-menu functionality, unless I "stop" the "manage desktop" module, and leave unchecked for future sessions.  Doing this restores right-click root-menus, but loses desktop icon placement (home, network, trash, etc...) and wallpaper.  If Saturnian has right-click menus on LXQT 0.16 either he has this module "unchecked", or a Debian developer restored the module outside of the LXQT dev team.  I'm guessing the former...

Edited by Hedon James
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The Fluxbox menus work fine in Bullseye -- when I'm logged into Fluxbox. I didn't realize you were talking about Fluxbox menus in LXQt. I have another Bullseye installation with LXQt, but I'm using Openbox as the WM. And in that setup, the Openbox right-click desktop menus do not work. Sorry for any misunderstanding.

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I guess the best course of action is to stick with Buster. You can get backports and security for 3 more years, so maybe a solution will come up in that time. I use XFWM as my window manager in LXQt and never right click, so this isn't an issue for me.

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15 hours ago, saturnian said:

The Fluxbox menus work fine in Bullseye -- when I'm logged into Fluxbox. I didn't realize you were talking about Fluxbox menus in LXQt. I have another Bullseye installation with LXQt, but I'm using Openbox as the WM. And in that setup, the Openbox right-click desktop menus do not work. Sorry for any misunderstanding.

Aha....THAT makes sense.  Both scenarios are exactly what I'd expect with LXQT.

 

FWIW....you can get your OB right-click menu to work by navigating to LXQT Config Center, Session Settings, Basic Settings tab, selecting the "Desktop" checkbox and "stop" that service.  To make that a permanent change, de-select the check box next to it.  Your OB menu functionality should be restored (or Fluxbox, or PekWM, or any other floating right-click Window Manager root menu).  The only downside I've encountered is the loss of desktop icons.  I'm not a fan of cluttering up the desktop with icons, but I do like my Computer, Home, Network & Trash icons as shortcuts from the desktop.  Maybe I can adapt to this...

 

Another alternative solution, as you discovered, is to log into the WM session instead of the LXQT session.  I used to do this, and autostart some programs at startup, until I realized I was autostarting most items that the Desktop Session manager would start in LXDE; at which time I commented out my autostart sequence and started logging into LXDE, which carried over into LXQT.  I may go back to this to retain my menus.....they are SO INGRAINED in my workflow that the LXDE and/or LXQT desktops with menus are the "raison d'etre" to me.  Sharing a cool trick.....if you're logging directly into a WindowManager session, autostart the panel.conf file to "skin" your Window Manager session to LOOK like a LXQT session.

 

A third alternative, which I haven't had time to go down the rabbit hole...is jgmenu.  jgmenu is supremely configurable to look like just about anything you want it to.  I've only tinkered a bit, but got floating applications menu for my desktop.  And jgmenu has a "prepend" section and an "append" section, to perfectly mimic MY preferred layout for a root-menu.  The "prepend" section is easy....adding my favorites/frequents to the top of my menu, BEFORE the applications menu.  It's the "append" section that's challenging me....this is the section where I'd normally have the Openbox/Fluxbox/PekWM settings specific to that WM.  Not sure how to "tie in" to the WM syntax, or translate for jgmenu.  Although jgmenu has a function to import an Openbox root menu, so perhaps I should start there and see what jgmenu imports....then modify accordingly for Flux or Pek.  Work in process....  This is perhaps my IDEAL solution, and a long-term future proof(?) solution, but it's also the most time-consuming.  A lot of work for such a small, yet IMPORTANT feature.  To me, at least...

 

So there ya go....OPTIONS!  😎

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12 minutes ago, raymac46 said:

I guess the best course of action is to stick with Buster. You can get backports and security for 3 more years, so maybe a solution will come up in that time. I use XFWM as my window manager in LXQt and never right click, so this isn't an issue for me.

you sound like an LXQT dev!  LOL!

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I've found that I actually prefer the window manager setup (either Openbox or Fluxbox, with tint2 in either case) over any DE [but, see below!]. In one very useful setup, I have KDE Plasma in Kubuntu and I added Fluxbox. Plasma is great, but Fluxbox is faster and more crisp, even with Plasma installed. So I can access KDE apps from within Fluxbox if I need to, and I've got Plasma available to log into if I really want/need to do that.

 

GNOME is the only DE that I use without adding Openbox or Fluxbox. But I enjoy using GNOME. Back in the GNOME 2 days, I did like to add an alternative WM, though.

 

Hedon James, your instructions for getting the WM's right-click menu to work in LXQt, that's a game-changer!! I feel like a bonehead for not having figured that out on my own! I made the change in Bullseye. Sweet! I already had an "Applications" submenu in my Openbox menu, so now I have removed the main menu from the LXQt panel, and I'm good to go! Excellent, and thank you! Also I had LXQt handling the wallpapers, but I use Nitrogen in Openbox, so now I'm using Nitrogen in LXQt as well. Desktop icons? Bleh. I don't use 'em at all.

 

As for jgmenu, I know that BunsenLabs has been going with it, but I'm not feeling it. Maybe I haven't spent enough time with it. I don't think I'll go that route at this time.

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I find it interesting that you guys and myself arrived at LXQt from completely different roads. I started with heavyweight DEs like Cinnamon and GNOME and progressively worked down to LXDE and eventually LXQt. I use LXQt only with Arch, and only on relatively hardware challenged laptops.

If I read you correctly you began with the basic WM and worked up adding a panel and other applications until you were close enough to LXQt to just adopt that.

I accept the fact that WMs are a bit faster but really when you've got a quad core CPU, a discrete GPU and 16 GB of RAM does it really matter? I will happily sacrifice an eyeblink of speed so that I don't have to program all the graphical settings in a text file.

I just am happy that we get the options to approach a Linux system the way we like.

Edited by raymac46
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10 minutes ago, raymac46 said:

I find it interesting that you guys and myself arrived at LXQt from completely different roads. I started with heavyweight DEs like Cinnamon and GNOME and progressively worked down to LXDE and eventually LXQt. I use LXQt only with Arch, and only on relatively hardware challenged laptops.

If I read you correctly you began with the basic WM and worked up adding a panel and other applications until you were close enough to LXQt to just adopt that.

I accept the fact that WMs are a bit faster but really when you've got a quad core CPU, a discrete GPU and 16 GB of RAM does it really matter? I will happily sacrifice an eyeblink of speed so that I don't have to program all the graphical settings in a text file.

I just am happy that we get the options to approach a Linux system the way we like.

 

I'm a third path to LXQT, FWIW.  Initially, I followed your path....progressed from Gnome 2.x series to Unity (grudgingly, at first) until I noticed that each release was becoming more bloated, reminding me of Windows.  Then I remembered "hey, this is linux.....I can change things to suit MY liking", and started looking into lighter weight DEs.  XFCE never really resonated, but Mate did...and I was pretty happy with that until I stumbled onto LXDE.  And the more I learned about LXDE, the more I realized its modular design allowed me to make it EXACTLY what I wanted, rather than the "best fit", and the LXDE desktop was easily the "lightest" in terms of startup RAM.  I was hooked....LXDE for me!

 

Then Saturnian posted a screenshot of interesting desktop, which he revealed to be Fluxbox.  I was off to tinker and became quite enamored with it....another "perfect fit" for me!  I learned to integrate Flux into LXDE, using Flux as the WM rather than OB3.  As I continued to learn about Flux, and its autostart file, I continued to tinker with that and realized I could start a "naked" Flux session with even less resources.  But I was missing some LXDE niceties that I had grown accustomed to, and had oodles of RAM and CPU, so I began autostarting those services in the Flux session.  Eventually, I realized I was pretty much autostarting the entire LXDE desktop, but manually, within the Flux session.  At that point I had hammered LXDE AND Flux into perfectly form-fitting pieces for my use.  So I switched back to LXDE (with Flux as the WM), and rode that train onto the LXQT track, where I am today.

 

So I'd say I walked your path from a heavier to lighter-weight DE.  Then switched paths and followed Saturnian's path of a de minimus DE that I built up to suit my preferences.  Only to realize that my sweet spot was a minimal LXDE/LXQT DE.  I differ from you, a little bit, on the CPU/RAM argument.  While I can understand your argument, and who's to say you're wrong(?!), I've always preferred to save my RAM & CPU cycles for the "heavy lifting" of whatever function my software application is working on.  Accordingly, I like to re-allocate my resources in a manner such that a minimal allocation goes to the mundane DE rendering, leaving the max available for "computing" functions.  JMO...

 

All the above is splitting hairs though.  Generally speaking, I agree with your overall assessment.  And I think LXQT is a great fit for MOST users.  I'd recommend it to nearly everyone...except maybe SecurityBreach!  LOL!

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So you came at it from both directions. Sort of like doing limits in Calculus. :w00tx100:

I agree it's more important to have RAM around for gettting stuff done. It's just that when you got 16GB of it you have lots for both DE and Apps. I usually only run one thing at a time full screen so it doesn't really bother me. Right now I'm rocking Windows 10 and Google Chrome with 21% RAM usage. Lots of headroom.

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7 hours ago, raymac46 said:

I accept the fact that WMs are a bit faster but really when you've got a quad core CPU, a discrete GPU and 16 GB of RAM does it really matter?

 

I alternate using several different computers at home, but I don't own anything that has specs anywhere close to that! Not even in the same ballpark! So, yeah, a WM does make a big difference here. My three weakest laptops have only 2 GB RAM, so for those I use only LXQt, Xfce, Openbox, or Fluxbox.

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Most of my stuff is old but I have only one machine with 2 GB of RAM and it's a netbook. That one I use Arch and LXQt on. I suppose a WM might make a difference in RAM usage, but the CPU is so wimpy I have trouble with a relatively "heavy" browser like Firefox.

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@HJ speaking of the O/S footprint getting in the way, I remember in 2008 my son-in-law's parents bought a new "Vista capable" desktop PC with 512 MB of RAM. They were lucky to be able to launch the desktop - no Aero effects, obviously. Even starting IE was painfully slow.

We put in 2GB of additional RAM and it made a world of difference.

Now I'm up to 32 GB in a new desktop and Windows runs OK. 😃

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Yeah, my 2 GB machines are each old Compaq Presarios, but with different CPUs. The wimpiest one struggles with Firefox if I have more than a few tabs open. But I enjoy using that laptop anyway. I guess I get some kind of perverse thrill from being able to continue using old hardware (thanks to Linux). But also the older laptops feel more solid, not as fragile as some newer I have and have had.

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Yep some of the old stuff is really put together well like my Thinkpad T430 (2012.) I have 12 GB of RAM in it and that is the machine I use for Bookworm.

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