debian kernel upgrade to 2.6.32-5-amd64 but uname still shows 686

mark asked:

I’m try to upgrade a debian system to 2.6 64 bit kernel with the command

aptitude install linux-image-2.6.32-5-amd64

which works fine.

The system reboots,
/vmlinuz -> boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-5-amd64

all good

however uname -a returns

Linux hostname 2.6.32-5-686 #1 SMP Sun May 6 04:01:19 UTC 2012 i686 GNU/Linux

Am I missing something or is this correct?

My answer:

One does not simply install a 64-bit kernel to change a 32-bit installation to a 64-bit installation. You usually have to completely reinstall the system.

That said, the Debian Wiki has a workaround which can be used to migrate 32 to 64-bit on a live system, but it looks hairy enough that I’d probably just reinstall.

View the full question and any other answers on Server Fault.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.