I apologize if this is a silly question, but before I download and attempt to upgrade…
Will doing so cause me to re-install all the previous applications that I’ve installed on the system? Or is it finally possible to upgrade the core components without stripping out any custom stuff that I’ve done?
There is no such things as seemless upgrade here, as in this case, problems will arise here and there… maybe yes, maybe no.
You should consider just installing fresh version, not upgrade. However, you should pay attention to some stuff:
/home directory must be on separate partition
copy on this partition any programs that you compiled and installed from source
check if you stored some files like wallpapers in kde/share or wherever inside / (root)
when all checked and backup on /home partition or some other than root, you can just install fresh openSUSE, formatting the root partition.
Last Wednesday I installed 11.1, using 11.0 for about 3 months up until then. Don’t worry about saving apps and such. Just remember which ones you use the most. In my case I have 2 320GB HD’s, the 2nd HD being /home2. HD#1 had 3 partitions…2GB swap, 30GB / [OS…11.0] and the rest for /home. HD#2 being 1 partition for /home2…with about 220GB’s of video which I wanted to keep. I chose to increase the size of the / partition for 11.1 to 40GB’s, HD#2 NOT selected for formating. All worked fine except I had chosen to install the latest KDE desktop [4.something] and although that desktop is awesome,…as far as I could figure out I could no longer easily locate the 2nd HD from a list on a computer tab on the desktop. I thought I’d have to go back to 11.0, but tried a re-install of 11.1 and noticed this time a choice of KDE 3.5 [OR 4.whatever]. 3.5 is pretty much the same as the slightly earlier version I was familiar with including the computer tab and easy access to my 2nd HD. It occurred to me, as should to you, that there were things that I had before which I either didn’t use at all or had issues. Adding apps with Yast [removing them too] is easy. You have a choice with adding repositories…choose ‘community’ and then you will have additional ones like Packman [awesome for multimedia stuff], Videolan, etc. As far as I can see after only a few days 11.1 is great. Thanks to it and the latest version of DeVeDe I just made a DL-DVD of the Beijing Olympics that plays for over 10 hours. Perhaps I should have looked for a explanation/tutorial of the latest KDE desktop and maybe might have found out it would be OK, but the 3.5 version is still an upgrade for me and is reassuringly familiar looking. In your case just be sure to format only / and install 11.1 there [unless you want to change the size of / and /home?],…forget about saving apps and their settings…isn’t that big a deal…the practice will be good for you. Unlike with Micro**** you [we] can look forward to doing this again in the not too distant future. In Canada…John