Config backup/restore: version compatibility?

The “disk” on my IPFire system is a microSD. I’m getting ready to do an IPFire update from v2.25 Core Update 144 to Core Update 146 or 147 (when released). I’d like to leave my current microSD untouched, do a fresh install of 146 or 147 to a new microSD, and then restore the config backup from Core Update 144 to the new microSD. The hardware is not changing.

What is the situation with config file compatibility between different releases/updates of IPFire? Is what I plan on doing guaranteed not to cause any problems? If not, how should I proceed?


Usually the settings from a backup of an old version should convenverted after restore.
But some settings will only work if you have assigned the same networks to the interfaces. (DHCP Server)

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What exactly do you mean by that and “some settings”? If you need to restore a working system on new hardware, MAC addresses of the interfaces will always differ from the original system and the assignment of networks to interfaces will be different then. Did I misunderstand anything here?

The IPF backup file is a text file, that has been saved in gzip compressed format. A Linux workstation will certainly open and read it. You might be able to do the same with Windows. Theoretically you could delete anything that you did not want restored, recompress it and then restore.

I find it more reliable to restore backups to the same core level, then upgrade the new system to current core level. Sometimes a core update makes a fundamental change in a sub-system and the older config might not be suitably converted. But note that you need to install any addons to the new system, before doing the restore.

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That’s the kind of info that I was looking for. I was concerned that a change to the config file format between the old and new versions would cause some service(s) to malfunction.
I’ll follow your lead and install the old version on the new microSD, install add-ons, restore the old version’s backup, and finally upgrade the new microSD to the new version.

Just to mention:
As long as there is no compulsory necessity to re-install “from scratch”,
you can use (e.g.) CloneZilla to take an image of the “system disk”, keep that as a safe backup,
and upgrade; if anything fails, it’s very easy to fall back to the previous situation.
The same way, you can clone the current uSD to a second one, continue upgrading with the new one,


I’ll take a look at Clonezilla. Thanks!