Devuan GNU+Linux is a free software operating system for your computer. Free software means you are free to use, copy and distribute, study, change the software, and share your modifications with the community.

Migrate from Debian Bullseye to Chimaera

The instructions below are only for migrating from Debian Bullseye to Devuan Chimaera. Migrating from a fresher, less customized Debian is likely to be less troublesome. Depending on your setup, significant issues may arise during the process so as always, proceed with caution and backup your data before proceeding.


In addition, there are 2 scripts available which partially automate the process:

Manual instructions

The first step is to change /etc/apt/sources.list to point to the Chimaera repositories.

root@debian:~# editor /etc/apt/sources.list

Modify sources.list to look like the one provided. Comment out all other lines.

deb chimaera main
deb chimaera-updates main
deb chimaera-security main
#deb chimaera-backports main

Now update the package lists from the Chimaera repositories.

root@debian:~# apt-get update --allow-insecure-repositories

The Devuan keyring should now be installed so that the repository and packages can be authenticated.

root@debian:~# apt-get install devuan-keyring --allow-unauthenticated

Update the package lists again so that the repositories and packages are authenticated.

root@debian:~# apt-get update

Upgrade the installed packages to the latest versions. Note that this does not complete the migration.

root@debian:~# apt-get upgrade (be careful NOT to use dist-upgrade here)

Once this is done eudev needs to be installed. Note that if Gnome is installed it will be removed by this command, but can be installed again after the migration.

root@debian:~# apt-get install eudev sysvinit-core

The last command may cause package breaks but they will be resolved as part of the migration process.

root@debian:~# apt-get -f install

A reboot is required to change sysvinit to pid1.

root@debian:~# reboot

Now perform the migration proper.

root@debian:~# apt-get dist-upgrade

Now the migration to Devuan is done, systemd related packages can be removed.

root@devuan:~# apt-get purge systemd libnss-systemd

If the required desktop is not already installed, install it now. The default in Devuan is XFCE.

root@devuan:~# apt-get install task-xfce-desktop


root@devuan:~# apt-get install task-gnome-desktop

Now remove any packages orphaned by the migration process, and any unusable archives left over from the previous Debian installation.

root@devuan:~# apt-get autoremove --purge
root@devuan:~# apt-get autoclean

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