[LON-CAPA-admin] Fedora to CentOS?

Neubauer, Paul R. pneubauer at bsu.edu
Wed Jan 2 09:13:14 EST 2008

Here's a question that probably doesn't come up very often, but has
anyone "sidegraded" from Fedora to Centos? Has anyone changed linux
distros in any other direction? Centos seems like a natural change of
distros, but I'm open to other suggestions too.
Background: We're still running FC4 on an HP DL380 G3. I know that's
suboptimal, but we have very few opportunities to upgrade and our window
last summer was occupied with other tasks. :-( 
LON-CAPA 2.5.3, the current version, deprecates FC4, but 2.6, the
soon-to-be-released version, does not even mention FC4, so it looks like
we want to upgrade the OS before 2.6.
On a previous occasion, I had tried and failed to install FC5. It turns
out that FC5 (I don't know about 6, 7 or 8) does not correctly detect or
handle the hardware RAID array on these Proliant servers.
">Here</a>  discusses that problem.) Of course, by the time I discovered
the problem, I had no time to track it down and fix it because the next
semester was about to begin. That left us on FC4 when FC5 was current,
which was not too bad, but it gets worse. Now the latest versions of
Fedora seem to be available as a DVD ISO, but no longer as multiple ISOs
for CDs. Unfortunately the DL380 has a CD drive, not a DVD drive. The
result is that between the RAID problem and the CD problem, I am not
sure how to go about updating from FC4 to Fedora 8 (or more likely 9 by
the time we get a window of opportunity to do it). I doubt that I'm
going to get funding to replace the CD drive with a DVD drive and,
personally, I don't feel like messing about with the hardware any more
than necessary.
I see that Centos does still come as multiple CD ISOs and is, obviously,
intended for use as an "Enterprise" platform. It also appears to support
the hardware RAID arrays of the Proliant series.
So, the big question is what I would need to do to "upgrade" to Centos.
I would GUESS that the instructions on
http://www.lon-capa.org/fedoracoreupdate.html may be comparable to what
I would need for "sidegrading" from Fedora to Centos, but I'm not too
sure. What I have done in the past for upgrading Fedora is essentially
to wipe out the OS but leave /home untouched and just reinstall the new
OS onto /, /usr and /var. 
I could go that route or pretend I was moving to FC6 (just with Centos
CDs) or ...
I may be able to get some spare hardware for a short time to test
install FC4 and then install Centos over that, but I'm not sure yet.
Anybody have any good advice for me?

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