I read on the forum that you can upgrade from Zorin 12.x to Zorin 15.x and will be able to do this in future. Does this mean that you don’t have to reinstall all your apps and data? If so - how do you do that upgrade?
You can follow this guide to upgrade from Zorin OS 12 to 15: https://zorinos.com/help/upgrade-zorin-os/
We will implement direct upgrades between Zorin OS 15 and 16 after it’s released. That way, you won’t need to reinstall the system to use the latest version.
Are the apps, settings and data that I have at present retained after the upgrade? i.e is everything needed to make this happen included in the “backup”?
When following the steps to upgrade from Zorin OS 12 to 15 (which I linked to in my previous post), you will need to manually back up your important files and information at the beginning of the process. This upgrade will be the same as re-installing the operating system.
So all extra installed applications and their settings are lost?
That depends on how you back up your system and how recent your back up is at the time of re-install. You will want to do a full back up right before doing a Planned Re-install of the OS.
With an unplanned reinstall of the OS, you count yourself lucky for any old back up you have.
For many installations, you will find the settings in your home folder in ~ /.config and ~/.local
Settings and installations in Root may be lost if not actively backed up. I usually recommend not backing up what is in Root unless it is for something that was a Particularly Tricky install… in which case create a back up of only that installation.
If you want to play completely safe, use rescuezilla (https://rescuezilla.com/) which backs up your entire system. Normally, all I do is backup my /home folder, including hidden files which are your apps config files (like your Web browser and email client files/settings). You would need to reinstall your printer and any other devices that needed specific drivers, or any apps (as in my case on Feren - vuescan). If you have manually partitioned your drive you ‘might’ get away with the same procedure I outlined in the old forum about reinstalling without touching /home.
OK thanks both. Backup home seems quite good - as well as noting which apps you use which are not in the Zorin OS that you load. I will look at rescuezilla though.
I know it is not high tech but I open Software Installed Apps and do page-by-page screenshots of what I have installed. If I then store those pictures offline, I then have a memo in case I have to re-install Zorin from scratch.
That has only happened to me on one occasion so far, when I moved from 12.4 to 15.0.
I also do regular backups of Home for all users.