SCO Unix Installation FAQ

This article is from a FAQ concerning SCO operating systems. While some of the information may be applicable to any OS, or any Unix or Linux OS, it may be specific to SCO Xenix, Open This is an old article about SCO Unix version upgrades and is only left here for historical purposes. There is lots of Linux, Mac OS X and general Unix info elsewhere on this site: Search this site is the best way to find anything.

Can I perform an in-place upgrade of SCO Unix ?

If you already have your package, consult the documentation (in particular, installation guide and release notes).


  • Can IPU from: 5.0.0 and 5.0.2
  • Cannot IPU from: Internet Faststart or ODT 3/Unix 3.2v4.2 or earlier
  • Caveats: If you IPU, you cannot install Internet Manager; you must do a fresh install if you ever want it.


  • Can IPU from: ODT3/Unix 3.2v4.2
  • Cannot IPU from: 5.0.0, Internet Faststart, older Unix versions


  • Can IPU from: ODT3/Unix 3.2v4.2
  • Cannot IPU from: Older Unix versions

Note that if you are doing an in-place upgrade from ODT3/Unix 3.2v4.2 to OSR5, you will not get a separate boot filesystem, and you cannot upgrade your root filesystem to HTFS.

For an article that explains why you wouldn't do an IPU, see /Unixart/upgrades.html.

Bela Lubkin supplied the following chart; it's out of date and probably of little interest with regard to the older parts, but I've included it anyway:

SCO Unix/Open Desktop/OpenServer release-to-release upgrade chart 97/10/07
================================================================= ========

  SCO Unix 3.2.0                 -IPU-> 3.2v2.0
  SCO Unix 3.2v2.0               -IPU-> 3.2v4.0
  SCO Unix 3.2v4.0               -SUP-> 3.2v4.1  (use MSv4.1)
  SCO Unix 3.2v4.0               -SUP-> 3.2v4.2  (use MSv4.2)
  SCO Unix 3.2v4.1               -SUP-> 3.2v4.2  (use MSv4.2)
 [SCO Unix 3.2v4.1 or earlier    ~N/A~> OpenServer Release 5.0.0 or later]
  SCO Unix 3.2v4.2               -IPU-> OpenServer Release 5.0.0
  SCO Unix 3.2v4.2               -IPU-> OpenServer Release 5.0.2
  SCO Open Desktop family 1.0    -IPU-> 1.1
  SCO Open Desktop family 1.1    -IPU-> 2.0
  SCO Open Desktop family 1.1    -IPU-> 3.0
  SCO Open Desktop family 2.0    -IPU-> 3.0
 [SCO Open Desktop family <= 2.0 ~N/A~> OpenServer Release 5.0.0 or later]
  SCO Open Desktop family 3.0    -IPU-> OpenServer Release 5.0.0
  SCO Open Desktop family 3.0    -IPU-> OpenServer Release 5.0.2
  SCO OpenServer Release 5.0.0   -IPU-> OpenServer Release 5.0.4
  SCO OpenServer Release 5.0.2   -IPU-> OpenServer Release 5.0.4
 [SCO OpenServer Release 5.0.x   ~N/A~> Internet FastStart 1.x.0]
  SCO Internet FastStart 1.0.0   -SUP-> 1.1.0  (use IFS 1.1.0 Supplement)
 [SCO Internet FastStart 1.x.0   ~N/A~> OpenServer Release 5.0.4]

-IPU-> In-place upgrade possible (start full OS install of target
       release, by booting N1 or N00 floppy; it will prompt you whether
       you want to upgrade)

-SUP-> In-place upgrade by installing supplement (named at end of line)

~N/A~> Upgrade not possible in a single step (may be possible via
       intermediate steps; but as in-place upgrades are always a little
       shaky, you probably don't want to compound then -- better to do
       fresh-install and migrate applications & data)

"Open Desktop family" = Open Desktop, Open Desktop Lite, Open Desktop
       with Server Supplement, Open Server Network System, and/or Open
       Server Enterprise System (different titles available at
       different release levels).

"OpenServer" = OpenServer Host, Desktop, Enterprise Systems.  A license
       is required to do an upgrade, and must be purchased for the
       specific upgrade path (e.g. SCO Unix 3.2v4.2 -> OpenServer Host
       System 5.0.2 would require a different license than SCO Unix
       3.2v4.2 -> OpenServer Enterprise System 5.0.2)


Jean-Pierre Radley reported that the 5.06 from 5.0.5 IPU was "almost to my liking".

However, there were sometimes very annoying problems. For example, missing patches (or even the order in which patches had been installed) could cause upgrade failures on some releases. In another case, not having certain products installed caused the upgrade to hang with an empty "grep". SCO has had other screens running on ALT-F2 and ALT-F3 during the OS installation - the F3 is a shell where you can issue commands (Linux has a similar setup, by the way) so it was possible to locate and kill those greps from ALT-F3, but who knows what else went wrong?


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