I'm currently on debian wheezy and I want to install Ubuntu. I'm on a slow broadband connection and I do not want to download all the packages again that I installed on the debian installation. Is there any way around so that the new Ubuntu installation installs/clones the previous package files of the debian installation?
On the old installation run the following command:
sudo apt-get install dpkg-repack fakeroot
&& sudo mkdir ~/dpkg-repack; cd ~/dpkg-repack && sudo fakeroot -u dpkg-repack
dpkg --get-selections | grep install | cut -f1
that will put all packages into a folder in your home folder called "dpkg-repack". Copy that to the home folder on your new installation and run
sudo dpkg -i *.deb
to install every one that is compatible, then just update the packages normally to resolve incompatibilities. Very few applications are actually recoded for the new releases, @syfluqs, so the two or three out of over 300 are just maybe a couple of drivers or one or two core applications that are installed anyway during normal installation, and are thus not downgraded to the old version