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Re: Is Debian 9 supposed to work on a Geode?

bw wrote:
> p.s. In the past I always tested a live system before upgrading, or 
> installing a new release, even though it is not suggested in the release 
> notes about upgrading.  IMHO, it is a good idea to always use a live 
> system for awhile and read some manpages on the machine.  There's really 
> no practical way to cover every situation in the documentation.

This is a small headless box. It has no CD drive or anything like that.
There is one USB port, but finding out how to boot it from USB would be
a major research project, if it's even possible. The BIOS is a rather
minimal thing that can only be accessed over a DE-9 serial port.

I was also running short on time. I got a message from Let's Encrypt
that they were withdrawing the validation method I was using, forcing
me to upgrade Certbot, and a sufficiently recent Certbot wasn't
available for Debian 8. Other urgent problems had been taking up most
of my time, and my certificates were about to expire.

Therefore I decided that the quickest solution was to copy the entire
SSD to a new one, installing the new SSD, and doing the upgrade to find
out whether it would work. It did work well enough that I got the
certificates renewed, so the immediate crisis is successfully averted.
Now I have a slightly less urgent crisis instead.

I can still roll back by putting the old SSD back and copying over the
certificates and other data, but then I'll have to install and maintain
an unpackaged Certbot, if possible, or find another ACME client that
works, and I'll still have to move away from Debian 8 within 14 months.

So if this processor is actually not supported anymore (contrary to the
information that Jonas Smedegaard linked to), then it looks like I
should get started on replacing the hardware, rather than putting a lot
of work into temporary solutions. It's sad to have to throw away
working hardware, but that's the way it is in the whole industry.
Debian is at least better than many others in that regard.

Björn Persson

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