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#1 2020-08-19 20:26:10

Registered: 2015-08-20
Posts: 6,734

Upgrading from Helium to Lithium

Upgrading to Bunsenlabs Lithium

Bunsenlabs is built on Debian Stable, and at this time is Lithium(Debian 10 Buster). You can upgrade from the old version to the new by changing the sources for packages, and then doing an update/upgrade.

As always, it is recommended that you back up your data before doing a major upgrade; and take particular note about checking if you have enough disk space to cope with the upgrade process (minimum 3GB spare, approx).

  • Debian repositories are listed in /etc/apt/sources.list and /etc/apt/sources.list.d

  • The default file for the Bunsenlabs repo is /etc/apt/sources.list.d/bunsen.list

  • Backport sources are in /etc/apt/sources.list.d/debian-stretch-backports.list and /etc/apt/sources.list.d/bunsen-stretch-backports.list

1:  Update all packages to latest version
$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt upgrade
2: Edit Bunsenlabs and Debian sources has the URLs of the Bunsenlabs repos.

The following procedure requires root privileges. Note that the url's should now all begin with https://

  • For updating from Helium to Lithium, change /etc/apt/sources.list.d/bunsen.list from:

    deb helium main


    deb lithium main
  • To edit the Debian repos, edit /etc/apt/sources.list. Depending on which mirror ( you use, change the sources from:

    deb stretch main contrib non-free
    deb stretch-updates main contrib non-free
    deb stretch/updates main contrib non-free


    deb buster main contrib non-free
    deb buster-updates main contrib non-free
    deb buster/updates main contrib non-free
3:  Disable Backports

By definition, backported packages are supposed to upgrade smoothly to the next stable version (ie stretch-backports > buster), so backported packages may no longer be necessary. Disable your backports sources before a dist-upgrade (disable by commenting out the lines with "#"). After the dist-upgrade, see if the packages are still required  (or even available) - just because a package was available in stretch-backports doesn't always mean there's a buster-backports version. If so then you can subsequently do:

  • If you have enabled Debian backports, then copy /etc/apt/sources.list.d/debian-stretch-backports.list to /etc/apt/sources.list.d/debian-buster-backports.list and change

    deb stretch-backports main contrib non-free


    deb buster-backports main contrib non-free
  • And if you have enabled Bunsenlabs backports, also copy /etc/apt/sources.list.d/bunsen-stretch-backports.list to /etc/apt/sources.list.d/bunsen-buster-backports.list and change

    deb stretch-backports main


    deb buster-backports main
4: Disable third-party repositories

We recommend that these are disabled before trying a dist-upgrade.You can then research again to see if they're still necessary, and if so put them back in.

5: dist-upgrade

Run in terminal:

$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt upgrade
$ sudo apt full-upgrade

For more information on what Lithium provides, see [STABLE RELEASE] Bunsenlabs Lithium Official ISOs. This includes package lists, What's New, and some details of changes to default config files.

6: Post-Upgrade configuration

Logout to the new Login screen. This provides a default X-session, which at this point has been set to the new Bunsenlabs session, which doesn't use most of your current Openbox configs. (You can change back to an Openbox session from the dropdown at top-right (wrench icon), or by setting x-session-manager with Debian Alternatives.)

The new bl-user-setup script will now check for changed user config files, and offer the choice to update them to new default versions. From 'man bl-user-setup':

This script is run non-interactively on a user's first login, and on  subsequent  logins
       to  check  for  new  default configurations in /usr/share/bunsen/skel that may have come
       from a package upgrade.  User set configurations will not be  modified  without  permis‐

       It  can also be run manually with custom options....

To bring the system up-to-date with Lithium you need to install

  • inxi - system information script and utilities

  • lshw - hardware configuration information

  • haveged - fix for entropy bug

  • at - required for beepmein. It needs to be installed without recommends else it will pull in a bunch of geeky email software.

and the replacements for terminator, gnumeric and mirage, which can be set as defaults using Debian Alternatives.

  • lxterminal

  • libreoffice calc

  • ristretto

To get the default Lithium desktop restore the Lithium BLOB after the bl-user-setup config updates (Menu > BL Utilities > BLOB Themes Manager).

For configuration of a Lithium Bunsenlabs session, have a look at Getting Started > Introduction to the Bunsenlabs Lithium Desktop. The main changes are that the menu and application keybinds are now set by jgmenu and xbindkeys, and autostart is now ~/.config/bunsen/autostart.

An extract from the Release Announcement:
hhh wrote:

Bunsenlabs Linux is pleased to announce Lithium, the latest release of our Debian stable (currently Buster) derivative. Core components include the Openbox window manager, tint2, a highly configurable panel, and jgmenu, a menu replacement for the Openbox menu, featuring menu auto-updating when new applications are installed and type-to-search for finding apps in the menu.

Some major features of Bunsenlabs Lithium:

  • New dark default theme, featuring custom-colored Papirus icons.

  • More modularity and flexibility, eg the BL session can coexist with a default Openbox or XFCE session.

  • Openbox can be replaced with another window manager but keep BL's autostarted apps, menu and keybinds.

  • The Bunsenlabs session now uses jgmenu by default, with many new features.

  • New init-agnostic, simplified bl-exit script.

  • Many improvements to BLOB themes manager, and conky and tint2 managers.

  • Improvements to our first-boot 'Welcome!' setup script, newly streamlined and now offering Bluetooth support.

  • Some default applications have been changed, and new ones added.

  • Installer now supports Secure Boot.

  • And many other small tweaks, improvements and bug-fixes. Please see the detailed release notes.

Release Notes
Package Lists

With acknowledgement for contributions from @johnraff and @rbh

Last edited by damo (2021-01-31 10:04:12)

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