Debian Distro Upgrade

So let's make our hands dirty with some Debian Linux distro update!
It happened to be this week I have received a complaint against one of our server, which had some dodgy outdated PHP packages installed on it.
I had to investigate that what has happened with the box and fix the issue.
I figured out it has Debian lenny installed on it, which considered quiet old and end of life support.
For this release has no security update since 2012, so it must be updated to never release to fix this issue.
Although this box is behind a firewall, but still it's dangerous to have an outdated box sitting on the net.
So I had to do full distro update on the box, which will follow here:
First I installed the latest packages from the original distro, which was lenny.
After the update I rebooted the box and changed the source to squeeze:
# nano /etc/apt/sources.list
deb wheezy main contrib non-free
deb-src wheezy main contrib non-free
deb wheezy/updates main contrib non-free
deb-src wheezy/updates main contrib non-free
Then I started the upgrade process like this:
# aptitude update
# aptitude safe-upgrade
# aptitude dist-upgrade
Follow the instructions by the aptitude, it will asks what you want to do with the conflicting packages.
For example php.ini has a modified version, then what to do?
Keep the current modified version or use the provided one by the distro?
Sometimes you need to use the distro provided config file otherwise the service wont be able to start up.
For example I kept the mysql-server config and the new version could not start up.
So I replaced to the new one and modified the config with some old settings and viola it started up just fine.
So to do upgrade from lenny to wheezy you must upgrade first to squeeze, then to wheezy:
lenny -> squeeze -> wheezy
Be patient and prepare few good coffee for the upgrade, because it will take some time!

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