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Ask HN: Upgrade from Ubuntu 16.04 to 18.x bionic beaver?
8 points by 0x01030307 4 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 5 comments
Is it worth it? Is nearly all s/w like virtualbox, vmplayer, etc compatible?

I have helped people upgrade 16.04, and we have encountered some bugs.

I used to run Ubuntu, but I see less and less reasons to do so these days. It's too complex and brittle. I can't understand it, and many of its components either deviate significantly from upstream due to excessive patching or they are non-standard things.

If I want to run a simple imperative distribution, where everything is understandable and packages follow upstream, I run Arch. I used to run Slackware, but the number of dependencies has grown exponentially. So dependency resolution is needed, and Arch follows Slackware ethos very closely. With the introduction of systemd, it provides vanilla packages and almost nothing else. It's literally what you get when you turn Linux from Scratch into a binary distribution.

For most things, I'm going a step further, and I run a functional distribution. NixOS is great, and GuixSD shows some promise. Functional-ness brings a lot of peace of mind. I love having declarative and reproducible setups.

Interestingly, the only two distributions where I have had zero problems setting up Keras and PyTorch are both Arch and NixOS.

Choose your way. Either imperative and very simple (Arch, Void) or functional (NixOS, GuixSD). I think there are a lot less advantages running regular distros (Ubuntu, Fedora).

I had to build some dev boxes for a couple engineers a few months before 18.04 came out, and I didn't want to build 16.04 just to rebuild them in 2 months. 18.04 was frozen and solid, so I built. They ran a bunch of engineering tools without issue.

I upgraded my 16.04 vm's to 18.04, and 18.04.1 is out so it super stable. Everything works.

Only thing different I did, uninstalled snap and installed spotify from a repo, but that repo has been giving key errors sometimes.

The only issue I've encountered is that NVidia JetPack doesn't run on anything >16.04, so I've had to use a VM running 16.04 to use it. Beyond that, all software that I was using on 16 works perfectly on 18.

I’m happy. Only issue I had was missing how 16.04 managed workspaces. It was easy to default back to unity rather than gnome in 18.04 and use workspaces the way I liked. You can select unity or gnome at login.

What's cool about Ubuntu 18.04 is that you can do a minimal install (a minimal working desktop without preinstalled softwares like libreoffice).

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