Distribution update from 15.4 to 15.5

Rockstor installs “Built on openSUSE” Leap 15.4 - End of Life (EOL) December 2023 - should be distribution updated. This How-to includes instruction on moving an existing 15.4 based install over, in-place, to the next major version of our base OS. Only one major version jump must be attempted at any one time. If your Rockstor install is not based on 15.4, consider one of our other “Distribution update …” How-tos.

  • A minimum Rockstor version of 5.0.9-0 is recommended before attempting this OS update.


There are always less unknowns for fresh installs. It is advisable to consider a fresh-start via the latest Recommended Rockstor installer. See Downloads for the available options. See also our Rockstor’s “Built on openSUSE” installer.

Existing Pools and Configuration Backup and Restore files remain compatible and importable.


For both in-place and re-install/import approaches; always ensure all backups are refreshed. For re-install/import all data on a re-used system disk (‘ROOT’ Pool) will be irreversibly destroyed. Alternatively use a fresh system disk to provide a fail over of reverting to the original system disk. Do not attach both old and new system disks simultaneously. Only one Rockstor system disk must be attached at any one time.

Before attempting an in-place distribution update, be sure that you have applied all regular updates first. The Updating Rockstor section covers how to do this either via the Web-UI or via the command line.


This Distribution Update procedure is well established in our upstream base OS of openSUSE Leap. Below we detail the following steps, each in their own sections:

  • Add OpenH264 repo

  • Update repositories

  • Distribution update

  • Reporting issues

See our FAQ entry What Repositories does Rockstor 4 use? for more context.

Add OpenH264 repo

As from openSUSE Leap 15.5 there is a default repository to provide Open H264 capabilities. Our general policy is to stick as closely as we are able to upstream, with the intention to avoid deviation. As such we similarly adopt this newly default Open H264 repo, to account for newer packages assuming its existence.

zypper --non-interactive addrepo --refresh http://codecs.opensuse.org/openh264/openSUSE_Leap repo-openh264

Update repositories

Here we stream edit/replace all 15.4 and 15_4 instances with 15.5 and 15_5 respectively via:

sed -i 's/15_4/15_5/g' /etc/zypp/repos.d/*.repo
sed -i 's/15\.4/15\.5/g' /etc/zypp/repos.d/*.repo


This does not change the repository configuration file names themselves. This is not important and can serve as an indicator of a system’s history/origin. The filenames for these repositories are cosmetic only.

Distribution update

Double check all repositories are as-expected. The following command should output a very similar list of repositories to those indicated. Rockstor-Testing may be replaced by Rockstor-Stable, or neither may be present; depending on your update channel selection

zypper --releasever=15.5 lr -U

Warning: Enforced setting: $releasever=15.5
Repository priorities in effect:                                                                                                                                                                (See 'zypper lr -P' for details)
      97 (raised priority)  :  1 repository
      99 (default priority) :  6 repositories
     105 (lowered priority) :  1 repository

#  | Alias                              | Name                                                         | Enabled | GPG Check | Refresh | URI
 8 | repo-openh264                      | repo-openh264                                                | Yes     | ( p) Yes  | Yes     | http://codecs.opensuse.org/openh264/openSUSE_Leap
 9 | repo-sle-debug-update              | Update repository with debuginfo for updates from SUSE Lin-> | No      | ----      | ----    | http://download.opensuse.org/debug/update/leap/15.5/sle/
 1 | Leap_15_5                          | Leap_15_5                                                    | Yes     | ( p) Yes  | Yes     | http://download.opensuse.org/distribution/leap/15.5/repo/oss/
 7 | repo-backports-update              | Update repository of openSUSE Backports                      | Yes     | (r ) Yes  | Yes     | http://download.opensuse.org/update/leap/15.5/backports/
 6 | repo-backports-debug-update        | Update repository with updates for openSUSE Leap debuginfo-> | No      | ----      | ----    | http://download.opensuse.org/update/leap/15.5/backports_debug/
10 | repo-sle-update                    | Update repository with updates from SUSE Linux Enterprise 15 | Yes     | (r ) Yes  | Yes     | http://download.opensuse.org/update/leap/15.5/sle/
 3 | Rockstor-Testing                   | Rockstor-Testing                                             | Yes     | (r ) Yes  | Yes     | http://updates.rockstor.com:8999/rockstor-testing/leap/15.5
 4 | home_rockstor                      | home_rockstor                                                | Yes     | (r ) Yes  | Yes     | https://download.opensuse.org/repositories/home:/rockstor/15.5/
 5 | home_rockstor_branches_Base_System | home_rockstor_branches_Base_System                           | Yes     | (r ) Yes  | Yes     | https://download.opensuse.org/repositories/home:/rockstor:/branches:/Base:/System/15.5/
 2 | Leap_15_5_Updates                  | Leap_15_5_Updates                                            | Yes     | ( p) Yes  | Yes     | https://download.opensuse.org/update/leap/15.5/oss/

Before the big Distribution Update we must import all the new repository keys and information from all of the changes made above.

zypper --releasever=15.5 --non-interactive --gpg-auto-import-keys refresh

And finally the actual base OS update itself. Here we instruct zypper to download all packages first. This helps to avoid a download failure part-way through this rather sensitive process.

zypper --releasever=15.5 dup --download-in-advance --allow-vendor-change --no-recommends

We use –allow-vendor-change as some prior openSUSE packages are now supplied directly from SuSE. The –no-recommends is to keep to our JeOS (Just enough Operating System) minimal origin. I.e. don’t install things like manuals etc and other ‘extra’ packages.

The download size plus the extra disk space required will be around 600 MiB. So ensure that you have at least 2 GB free on your system disk (‘ROOT’ Pool), before proceeding.


As we are changing the legs upon which the entire system is running, it is best to have the system under as minimal load as possible. As such it is advisable to close any Rockstor Web-UI browser tabs during this process.


It is imperative that the system is not rebooted during this process. It is also important to reboot the system after the above “zypper … dup …” command has completed. This enables the new legs to be the ones running the show. Upstream reference: SDB:System upgrade to Leap 15.5

To reboot from the command line once the above “zypper … dup …” command has finished, enter the following commands as root:


Reporting issues

As always we welcome feedback to improve what we do. So please consider reporting your experience or suggestions on our friendly Community Forum.

A distribution update is in many ways more complex than an entirely fresh install. And given Rockstor’s overall size a re-install can be very quick. But if you have a complex install an in-place distribution update can be the way to go.