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I've been trying to install Linux for the past three weeks and I have been doing some research on my own. I'm planning on installing Red Hat or Mandrake. I burned the Cd's and they boot perfectly. When i boot them up the installation screen loads and i can tell that the ISO was properly burned. After hitting Install it starts to load the packets and then stops. The screen flashes and then the computer reboots and the process could happen all day. I have gotten the messages "Uncompressing Linux., Ok, Booting the Kernel." Then the computer reboots and the Cd boots all over again. I have tried many window commands and none seem to work. I know that the Cd's are burned right because they were used to reformat my brother's computer. Could you please help me?
Compaq Stock CPU
Celeron 2.53GHz processor
760 MB of RAM PC2700 DDR SDRAM DIMMs
Sony CD-RW drive
Hypermedia DVD+RW drive
Maxtor 40GB HD [Master]
Maxtor 120 GB HD
Western Digital 80 GB HD
To me this sounds definitely like hardware phenomenons.
To figure out, try this:
Install Windows (Yuck, but try anyway). You don't need to do any polishing, just see if the installer finishes all right.
If you can install Windows, all is not lost.
Grab a Linux LiveCD - eg Knoppix. Boot it, but *only* to the 'boot:' prompt. Now figure out (using the provided help) how to disable all that jazzy hardware detection - because i believe this is what causes your install to f*ck up.
Disable stuff. Will the Knoppix CD boot properly now? If not, try to disable something else (dma, SCSI-detection, there's a whole range of possibilities...) and retry.
Eventually you will figure out what causes the installer to crap out on you. Read the relevant info regarding whatever distro you like and how to make its installer NOT do that particular kind of activity/detection during install. And then install.
Of course you may also have broken hardware. Linux is a bit picky with hardware. Uneven RAM's... BTW; how did you gwet to have 760 MB of RAM??? Shouldn't that be 3*256=768 MB...
Sounds to me like it could be either overheating problem or one of your sticks of RAM is faulty.
When you upgraded your CPU did you buy a bigger heatsink to go with it? If not, what was your previous CPU?
Also, you can check to see if any onboard device is disabled in the Bios, if so enable it.
Try setting up the jumpers your IDE devices (Hard disks, CD/DVD drives) all on cable select instead of master/slave etc.
Well I did infact put in a bigger heatsink as well as 2 more fans (I personally believe you can never have enough fans).
But I downloaded Knoppix and gamesKnoppix last night both of them boot up and dont reboot they just freeze. I let them sit for an hour on a new hard drive and nothing happened so I aborted this installation, and I next will try your suggesstion of turning off autodetection. Although it hasnt worked in previous distros I think it might work on Knoppix.
by the way I have a 512 stick and a 256 stick
512+256=768 but the PNY 256 RAM losses MB somehow under the Computer properties screen.
If I were you I would start with it as basic as you can. Whatever sound or other hardware you're running take them out or disable them if they're onboard. Only connect the essentials. Hard drive, CD/DVD-Rom, video inside your comp. Try and boot up knoppix. If you still have the problem I would try a different video or Ram if possible. Try and rule out your hardware one peice at a time. I had a similar problem to yours that ended up being my video card not being compatible.
well Knoppix boots up and runs great. The only problem is that it runs off the CD and doesnt install or save any of my information. So i need to format the HD. By the way, I bought a brand new 80 GB Western DIgital HD to install linux on. Currently im trying to transfer the files on the CD over to the HD so the HD boots and not the CD.
I installed Knoppix on my HD but now it doesnt boot, i tried using the CD to boot it by typing "bootfrom=/dev/hda1/". nothing happened. The installation wanted me to make a boot disk but it said it wasnt needed. I have a floppy drive but it is USB and Knoppix wont detect that. Im still working on putting a boot loader into the HD and not the Partition inwhich Knoppix was installed.
Having seen that hardware /may/ be causing your problem, it would be nice if you could consolidate your suspicion by ruling out install-media defects. To that end, any given install-media you use should be able to work on another PC.
Actually, media defects (or was it errors during download or burn??) are possible causes of malfunction.
If you have a spare harddisk and is able to persuade a friend to lend you his CPU+VGA+PSU, it is the simplest way of getting hard evidence that the CD is good - or bad. Replace his disk with yours, then do an install.
If it works, you have a good media - and some sort of hardware issue on your own machine.
If it doesn't, most likely the media is bad. I say this, because i've installed loads of different Linux-boxes over the years, and hardware conflicts - to the degree of me not being able to finish install - has not been a problem. Missing or nonfunctional drivers yes, but almost never crashes, and when freezes or crashes have taken place, disabling hardware autodetection or framebuffer graphics always brought me home. Neither mixed memory speeds/brands, cheap noname-hardware nor brand-spanking-new hardware has stopped me. Installers take a benign approach to these things, and you will at most end up with 'no function'.
But now you tell us Knoppix WILL in fact run. Only not from HD. Try to take IchBin's advice and disable any nonessential pieces of hardware. Yank 'em from the cabinet, disable 'em in BIOS or whatever.
Initially you need a CPU, a CDROM, a VGA, one (only one) stick o' RAM and a keyboard/CRT.
Run a liveCD. If it works, add the HD.
Install LiveCD to HD. If it works off the HD, try to install a 'real' distro.
If that works, add more RAM and retry.
Continue adding NICs, soundcards etc until something breaks.
You need to install a boot loader. Run Knoppix from the CD as before and run the hd installer, but don't install Knoppix again. Just go to the part where the boot loader is configured and installed. You can also create the boot disk if you want.