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I am using RemasterSys to create backups of my OS. I noticed that when using the Backup option, when restoring from 1 machine to another, my resolution wasn't optimal ... Idealy, I will also like user/passwords to be different ... I believe there are other things that might need to be changed manually like driver config etc?

What do I need to consider and do to fix them when restoring a backup from 1 machine to another (with different hardware)?

Would using the TAR method have a similar problem with different hardware? Like GPU's or even CPU being different, like backup from desktop restored to laptop? Main Purpose: Sync Apps

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5 Answers 5

up vote 4 down vote accepted
+100

If your main purpose is syncing apps, then just move your home dir and export/import the list of installed packages.

oldmachine$ dpkg --get-selections > list-of-installed-packages

newmachine$ dpkg --set-selections < list-of-installed-packages && apt-get -u dselect-upgrade
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Does this remove apps I don't need? Great method tho –  Jiew Meng Oct 21 '11 at 14:46
2  
you can remove those by running dpkg --clear-selections before set-selections –  cweiske Oct 21 '11 at 15:18
1  
Speaking of syncing apps, with 11.10, you can do it quite easily from the Software Center, courtesy of Ubuntu One. –  Oxwivi Oct 22 '11 at 9:00

Unfortunately making a backup to restore to another system with different hardware will always leave you with a half stable / configured system.

The possibilities and variations of hardware and what needs to be configured are huge. The fact that you were able to boot on that backup you restored to another system and only complaint about the graphics configuration is not normal.

Full backups, 1:1 copies or system images are to be restored to the same hardware configuration.

Tar backups wont help you, the chances of anything going wrong if restored to a different hardware will be greater (from what I understood RemasterSys does try to make your system bootable on a different hardware).

Word of advice is, make backups of what is personal. Full system restores work perfect only on the same hardware.

If you want to sync apps between systems and both systems have the same applications installed (same versions would help) a backup of you home will contain most of the configuration you need to restore, a script can be made that gets the packages from one machine to the other but seriously you know what you use daily, a script reads all the packages from one installation to another would really be a overkill since you would have to sort out the packages that you don't want installed on the other computers (ie: hardware drivers).

If you want to transport packages from one computer to another and be able to easy select what to install use APTonCD for that.

Other then this will need some more (maybe a bit!) of configuration and trouble shoot.

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You can do this easily by a tool called Aptoncd . You can select the packages you want and best of all you can put it in a portable apt repo,requiring no internet

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+1 for a nice method of saving packages ;) –  Bruno Pereira Oct 21 '11 at 15:16
    
Your url is wrong! –  Bruno Pereira Oct 21 '11 at 15:17

I consider backup/restore of the main OS pretty much a waste of time, as you will always carry over a whole bunch of old cruft that might cause obscure trouble at time or another, especially if you carry your OS with you for a number of years. So I would always go with a clean system install on a new machine and then go from there, unless you have to handle dozens of machines of course.

As for installing the same applications on both machines, you can do that with a little bit of scripting:

dpkg -l | gawk  "/^ii/ { print \$2 }" > installed_packages

And then on the other machine:

apt-get install $(cat installed_packages)
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Great alternative too. Interested to know if this removes packages I don't need? –  Jiew Meng Oct 21 '11 at 14:48
    
Dont forget he wants to run on 2 dif configs ie: no need to install nvidia-current if there is no nvidia card installed on the other system, you will have to add package sorting or do it by hand. –  Bruno Pereira Oct 21 '11 at 14:56

If you want to do this just for applications what Grumbel suggested should work. Another way to do it would be simply Making a pseudo-package that requires all the packages currently installed on one box with a >= version. Then you install like normal and add a single package and it pulls in everything.

Note that neither Grumbel's approach nor mine handle configuration files.

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