Media Temple does some stupid interesting things with its linux installs. Particularly it seems like they don’t like clients upgrading their own boxes… So they don’t include some core packages that are needed to run the automated upgrade on Ubuntu. Now, I got on the support line and the front line cannon fodder (aka Tier 1 support) gave me the following entertaining fiction to avoid helping:

1. The is a Developer server (fine so far, true…) and I am on my own because they don’t know what changes I could have made (not fine, this whole problem was due to me hosting with them vs. a host that doesn’t do such odd things to their OS installs…)

2. I had installed the OS on my box so it was on me (completely not true… you purchase a VPS and select which OS you want, at which point they load it up for you… he may have been confused…)

3. The OS that was installed on my box was exactly what would come from Canonical if I had gotten it from them. (once again, very creative… and not true… “do-release-upgrade” works “out of the box”… MT has done something with their OS images…)

Now… the gentleman was very polite (albeit he was either very ignorant or lying…), and to be fair, Media Temple support has always been pretty excellent. Also, I have been with like 4 different hosting companies and they are by FAR the best. So… the above was hopefully a fairly isolated event and I bring it up for entertainment value.

After giving up on support as I could see I was getting nowhere, I started googling… more… After some extensive searching I patched a few things together and got it working (pretty well and correctly I think?). Here is what I did to take my Mediatemple VPS Ubuntu 13.04 box to 13.10.

apt-get install update-manager-core python-apt
cd ~
mkdir tmp && mkdir vartmp && mount --bind ~/tmp /tmp && mount --bind ~/vartmp /var/tmp

That should take care of you.

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2 comments on: Media Temple, do an in-place upgrade of your Ubuntu server on your DV Developer VPS

  1. Taxi

    Just wanted to let you know that this solution worked for me. I was having issues upgrading from raring. I had updated my sources.list to the old-release archives, but kept getting “ImportError: No module named apt” errors when attempting the actual update.

    The 4 lines above got me past that. Thanks!

  2. nbeam

    Glad this helped you get it fixed! I recently left MT (not due to this issue specifically) in favor of a much cheaper and much better dedicated server with a company called KimSufi. You have to keep an eye on when servers become available as they are nabbed up pretty quickly but once you get one it is like hosting nirvana if you are comfortable admin’ing a linux box from start to finish. It is so very nice to have absolutely full control over my hosting, at these prices I am never going back to shared hosting or to an overpriced VPS.

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