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Re: Updating NetBSD binary packages

On Sat, Feb 13, 2010 at 02:19:24PM +0100, Dirk H. Schulz wrote:
> What about updating the NetBSD base system? The NetBSD guide seems to 
> imply that booting from an installation medium is absolutely necessary

It does?  That's wrong.

> but I venture to ask for it nevertheless:
> Is there any way to update a running system? Can (e.g.) sysinst be 
> installed and run without booting from installation media? Or is there a 
> tool that can fetch updated sets and extract them into place?

You can just manually extract the sets if you want to.  Do not extract
the etc.tgz set though, as that would overwrite your configuration.
Use etcupdate(8) after extracting the sets to pull up your config to
match the new version.

Using makes this even easier, that allows you to build from
source and install onto a running system with a few simple commands.
See the UPDATING file in the source tree for some examples of how to
do that.

On the other hand, there's no reason not to use the installation media,
as you will need to reboot anyway to start the new kernel so the Guide's
advice isn't so bad.

"The process of preparing programs for a digital computer
 is especially attractive, not only because it can be economically
 and scientifically rewarding, but also because it can be an aesthetic
 experience much like composing poetry or music."
                                                        -- Donald Knuth

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