Upgrading from Fedora 18 to Fedora 19 using FedUp

A detailed tutorial on how to upgrade from Fedora 18 to Fedora 19 using the FedUp utility.

Given that Fedora 19 was released recently1, I decided it was time to upgrade my laptop from Fedora 18. I had previously successfully upgraded my laptop from Fedora 17 to 18 using FedUp2, so felt confident in using the same approach again. Here are the steps I took to carry out this upgrade.

Before you begin, back-up!

You should never attempt to do an operating system upgrade without backing up your important data first. I use Back In Time3 to take an entire back-up of my home directory to an external USB drive (USB 3.0 is great for this), and took a snapshot right before carrying out this upgrade.

Ensure your existing system is up-to-date

You should ensure that your Fedora 18 is up-to-date before using FedUp. Here are the commands I ran as root:

root$ yum update rpm
root$ yum -y update
root$ yum clean all
root$ reboot

The reboot is just in case you got any kernel updates or any other kind of update that required a reboot.

Disabling 3rd party repos

It's best to disable 3rd party yum repositories before running FedUp, due to the fact that leaving them enabled will result in a longer FedUp upgrade (more packages to download), and the increased risk of problems occurring (my guess is that FedUp is not testing against all of the 3rd party repos out there).

Firstly, you can run this command to get a list of all of the packages you have installed from 3rd party repos (if you have none, then you can skip the rest of this section):

root$ rpm -qa --qf '%{NAME} %{VENDOR}\n' | grep -v Fedora

The config files for each repo you are using are located here:

root$ ls -l /etc/yum.repos.d/

For each repo that you need to disable, add 'enabled=0' to those .repo files.

Running FedUp

root$ yum install fedup
root$ fedup-cli --network 19

Now you must wait. FedUp will gather a list of all of the packages it needs to upgrade (this would be a lot bigger with those 3rd party repos enabled), and then download the updates from the Fedora servers. It will then reboot your system.

Upon reboot, you should now have a grub option "System upgrade (FedUp)". Select that, and wait some more while FedUp completes the installation.

Re-enable the 3rd party repos and apply their updates

Once the system is upgraded to Fedora 19, you can now re-enable all of those 3rd party repos you disabled earlier by replacing 'enabled=0' with 'enabled=1'. Then as root:

root$ yum distro-sync

Note: Some repos use the Fedora version number in their URLs, for example Dropbox uses http://linux.dropbox.com/fedora/$releasever where $releasever is now 19 on my laptop, however as of writing this gives a 404 http://linux.dropbox.com/fedora/19 but this works fine http://linux.dropbox.com/fedora/18. As a temporary workaround, you can either hard-code these URLs to use 18 until the 3rd parties catch up, or simply disable the repos until they do.


John Collins

I have been writing about web technology and software development since 2001. I am the developer of the Alpha Framework for PHP, and the five.today personal productivity app. I love open source, technology, and economics.