Today I updated my ThinkPad R61, which came with SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop (SLED) SP1, to SP2. I did this entirely online, using this Novell document as a guide. In particular, section 9.2.3, “Updating to a Service Pack” and “Starting with YaST Online Update” described the process I used.
There were a few gotchas with the documentation. Some of the package names didn’t match what I saw on my system. But more seriously, I needed to run the Yast2 Novell Customer Center Configuration tool before anything would work. Registering one’s installation is apparently the only way to add the service pack repositories to Online Update. Otherwise, the process went smoothly, and the system appears to be running well after a reboot.
I noticed one small glitch after installing SP2: fonts in both KDE applications and Firefox looked very fuzzy. After some head-scratching, I fixed this by disabling subpixel hints in anti-aliased fonts. To do this, start the KDE Control Center (which SUSE calls “Personal Settings”), then select Appearance & Themes, then Fonts, then press the Configure button, then un-check “use subpixel hinting”.