I've got a Debian server with Postfix for years, now I've decided to upgrade it to the newest version, currently I'm running on 6.0.10 which is not supported for a year and a half. Should I upgrade it from version to version (6 - 7; 7 - 8; 8 - 9)? Will upgrading delete my Postfix configuration and configuration of the other services (rsyslog,..)?

Thanks for answering.

closed as too broad by Rui F Ribeiro, Rahul, Stefan, Archemar, Jeff Schaller Aug 4 '17 at 10:59

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  • backup the configs/machine/vm. rsyslog will need some changes, postfix maybe. We do not know the complexity of your postfix config too. – Rui F Ribeiro Aug 4 '17 at 6:49
  • @RuiFRibeiro Thanks for advice. About complexity of my Postfix - I'm running a mail server on it - it is not the main server in my company, but some email go trough it. The main reason why I'm going to upgrade it is that the postfix logs keep being blank - probably because 6.0.10 Debian. – Michael Aug 4 '17 at 6:54

I'd recommend taking a snapshot/copy of the VM and trying to upgrade it directly from Debian 6 to Debian 9. If there's only a few minor problems to fix up and it still works, go with that. Otherwise revert to the original, and upgrade it one release at a time - you'll have more to fix up at each stage but that's the officially recommended and supported procedure (upgrading from one debian release to the next is pretty much guaranteed to work. upgrading from release n to >= n+2 is not).

Always test major upgrades on a test machine/VM before risking your production server

BTW, postfix is pretty good about backwards compatibility. Not sure if it's a debian default or an upstream default, but it runs in backwards-compatible mode until you tell it not to. e.g. from a machine I haven't bothered checking/updating the postfix conf for:

$ postfix reload
postfix: Postfix is running with backwards-compatible default settings
postfix: See http://www.postfix.org/COMPATIBILITY_README.html for details
postfix: To disable backwards compatibility use "postconf compatibility_level=2" and "postfix reload"
  • Thanks for advice. I'll probably delete whole server and migrate to Ubuntu 16.04. What do you think, is it good idea? – Michael Aug 4 '17 at 8:38
  • I can't see that there's any reason to choose ubuntu 16.10 over debian stretch. however, i'm a DD since 1994 so am probably biased. whatever you upgrade to or install from scratch, remember to upgrade more than every six years. ubuntu will give you an ~6 month upgrade cycle if you don't use their LTS releases. debian about 2 years. personally, i mostly run debian sid ('unstable') on most systems, or stable + stuff cherry-picked from backports & sid...or backported myself if i have to. – cas Aug 4 '17 at 12:00
  • @Michael Usually stable Debian, or +backports at the end of life before the next distro. – Rui F Ribeiro Aug 6 '17 at 6:40

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