How can I remotely upgrade from OES2-SP1 to OES2-SP2?

This is just a simplified adaptation of a community post by author sakila here:
…all due credit (and thanks) to the author for putting that together!!  Please read that doc first to get a feel for what I’m after here, and take in all the warnings and caveats.  Maybe even post a comment, and thank the author… 😉

I don’t know about you, but the last thing I want to have to do during a server OS upgrade is drive all around the state to go hit “enter” on a console or something.  If I can’t do it remotely, I don’t want to do it!  So my intention here is just to document a possible remote upgrade method, clean up some typos, and so forth.  Please note that I have followed this procedure a good handful of times, and have had great success with it so far.  If you follow this procedure, make sure to drop a comment and let me know how it went.

And for heaven’s sake, if you don’t know what you’re doing, don’t do this!  Read it all through first, maybe test on a demo machine, etc…  Also, I hope it goes without saying that you’ll probably want to make use of the “screen” utility to do all this work…  More on screen another time…

Anyway, back to the task at hand…

First, patch your OES2-SP1 system completely up-to-date with this:

rug up -t patch -g security -g recommended OES2-SP1-Updates SLES10-SP2-Updates

…but watch out for being prompted for the move-to-sles10-sp3 issue !!  Reboot as needed.

Now a quick aside or two, right in the midst of things… If you have a crazy, complicated admin password, change it temporarily for this process.  Set it to “changeme”, or “temp123”, or anything without special characters.  You’ll thank me for it later, and it will work better when you create the “answer” file.  Also, please remember that if you have an SMT server, make sure to prepare the new channels you’ll need.  Oh, and if you have custom installation sources (like and ftp server or webserver with ISOs mounted on it or something), they’ll be useless in a few minutes anyway, so you may want to delete them now…

Then, assuming all patches are up to date, your server codes are valid, etc., etc., the first step of the process is to get the “update” patch in place:

rug in -t patch move-to-oes2-sp2

…you should not need to reboot here.

Now the box is mid-way between versions.  We can see that it needs its versioning and control packages (those that define what version it is to be) with this command:

rug lu -t patch

So now we need to continue to turn it into an extremely un-patched OES2sp2 server, with this command:

rug up -t patch -g recommended

…and DO NOT REBOOT when prompted!  Because if you reboot now, you will need to physically be at the console screen to enter the eDirectory tree Admin password when prompted.  We don’t want that (unless you have HP Lights-out boards or something).  So, in order to create an answer file to automatically stuff the the Admin password in (remember, you changed it to something simple, right?), do the following:  In a shell session, as root,

cd /root

…to ensure the answer file is away from other users, since it will be created in your working directory.  Now create the answer file like this:

yast create-answer-file [adminpassword]

…of course, replacing “[adminpassword]” with your eDirectory Admin password.  Unfortunately, you must enter the password on the command line, then it re-displays it to you, so:

  1. make sure there are no eyes on the monitor other than yours while doing this, and
  2. I strongly recommend that when you finish this session, you log back in and vi /root/.bash_history and remove the line with the admin password (so other users don’t see it later!)

Now, copy it to where it needs to be:

cp answer /opt/novell/oes-install/

Now reboot:

init 6

When the server is back up and running, it will complete the update of all the OES-related services; this takes some time.  Once that’s done, you need to do a final round of patching with our brand-new updated channels:

rug up -t patch -g security -g recommended OES2-SP2-Updates SLES10-SP3-Updates

…and reboot if needed.  Oh, and some cleanup…  Delete the temp answer file:

rm /opt/novell/oes-install/answer

…And don’t forget to remove the answer file password line from your /root/.bash_history…  And change your Admin password again…

And as a final step, clean up your installation sources (yast inst_source) if you had custom ones. And you’ll also need to re-add your “Add-On” source for the OES software;  it’s a requirement.  So one way to do it would be to run “yast add-on” , and walk through the steps of adding the URL to the source, ensuring all the patterns are listed (they should all be set to “Reconfigure is Disabled”).

And that’s it!  If all went well, you should now have a fully upgraded server.  Enjoy!


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