Question: Any easy way to safely and remotely upgrade to Xen?

I have some personal machines in a colo. It is a bit of a drive and not so easy to work at. The OSs really need a big update to a modern distro.

Is there any safe and reliable way to remotely migrate the machine to Xen? Something better? How about Ubuntu?

Have we left the era of: backup, burn new distro, cross fingers?

If I can get the machine on Xen, then in theory I would never have to worry about installing an OS on the machine that could render it useless.

Thoughts?

Somehow, I have this feeling that a station wagon with 9-track tapes is in my future (* reference to the old Tanenbaum college text on data communications)

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2 Responses to Question: Any easy way to safely and remotely upgrade to Xen?

  1. Giao says:

    While I don’t have an answer for your question, and I really really like the idea of moving stuff into virtual images, I still don’t think it’s a cure all. You’ll still have to do the occasional rev to the host system for new kernels and what not.

  2. Simon Crosby says:

    There’s a bundled p2v script in our free XenExpress product http://www.xensource.com/xenexpress. You could pull it out, tweak for whatever distro you have, and it would do the job, I think. If that works, we’d love the changes back so we can lift other instances of your particular linuxes in the future.

    We provide a bundled Debian Sarge template with the product too. If you install it, and use apt get to pull down the packages you need, then pull in your code, you should be off to the races. We’ll move to Etch as soon as we’re done testing. Guess you could even turn Deb into Ubuntu.

    Best, Simon Crosby, CTO XenSource

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