[ILUG] Question about transferring system
xcraft at eircom.net
Tue Apr 13 22:34:08 IST 2004
On Tue, 13 Apr 2004, Michael Treacy wrote:
> My server went pear-shaped about 2 weeks ago. I'm currently about to install
> Linux on a new system, but I have a question:
> How easy is it to transfer the old user accounts to the new system? Or can
You can, and it's quite easy, in my experience.
> Just to help any prospective repliers, there are a few things you should be
> aware of:
> My old system was running SuSE 6.4 (new system will be SuSE 9.0)
> My old system didn't have any backup facilities - cd-rw, tape, etc. (new one
> I've established that my old hard disk is still in perfect condition. (it
> was a 6GB IDE drive)
> New system will be dual-120GB disks incorporating RAID
> So, can I mount the old disk on the new system and copy over the user
> directories? I'm sure I also need copies of the /etc/passwd files and some
> other hidden files.
> Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Yes indeed, the easiest thing would be to mount the old drive and copy
/home to the new /home
Of course, you will need your old passwd & group files. I've done
something similar, moving a box I have at home from RH7 to Debian 3.0, and
had no trouble moving user accounts. I'd say the best thing is to copy the
relevant lines from the old /etc/password & /etc/group to the new one, as
your new setup may have changed some daemon usernames & groups - in my
case, apache ran as 'apache' user under RH7, it's 'www-data' under debian.
If you copy the old ones directly stuff may break.
Can't think offhand if there's any other files you need for user accounts
to work, it depends on your setup. If you use samba, for example, then you
may need to copy the smbusers file. You could copy over all the old /etc
files of course, and get your old setup back, but i'd do an eyeball-diff
with the new ones to check for new config options, security changes etc. etc.
To me, this is one of the great benefits of linux compared to windows -
all user data is stored in one place, so all their personal config stuff
for kde/gnome, .bashrc etc will still be there. Unlike windows, which
tends to scatter stuff to the winds.
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