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I can get through Red Hat 7.2's install all the way past video card detection (which it does correctly), partitioning and actual file copying and setup. But when I get to the X screen resolution and monitor setup, something odd happens...
RH7.2 setup selects "unprobed monitor" as my monitor, and because I'm using a no-name generic laptop (that was cheap back in 1999), I select "Generic Laptop Display Panel 800x600", even though I was able to display up to 10x7 when I had Win98 on the same machine.
At the next screen, where I'm given the option to "Test Setting", if I select 16, 8 or whatever bit at 8x6 or any other resolution, the screen goes black and I have to power off and reboot. There is no recovery, no drive access or anything when the screen goes blank.
HOWEVER! If I don't "test setting", 7.2 setup finishes, and after reboot, X runs fine (although the fonts under GNOME are fuuuugly).
So, my question is, what's causing the crash?
As I said before, this is a generic, no-labeled laptop. The bios (which you access via Ctrl+Alt+S during boot... weird...) says the CPU type is a "Tillamook" at 266Mhz. The bios is calls itself SystemSoft SCU... any clues on that front?
What's really stunning, to me, in this case, is not so much that I got a reply to a message I posted a long time ago and then forgot. It's the fact that you found EXACTLY this laptop. Props.
By the way, my problem was solved fairly easily. You know the whole joke about the doctor and the patient who says "it hurts when I do this," and the doctor says "don't do that?" That's how I solved it.
I just didn't test the settings. I set my resolution to 1024x768@16bit and set my monitor to "Default 1024x768 LCD" or whatever (it was under the "generic" category). Now it runs like a dream.
This must be a newbie problem, I had the same problem with my desktop machine. All would be fine until I tested the monitor settings, then it would freeze, with no backing out at all. Rebooting the system would render the machine crippled, and I had to start over. I finally just installed without testing and it went well.