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Old 08-25-2006, 04:23 PM   #1
m0n0xiDe
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Installation Frustrations


Hello,

Just found this forum and it looks very helpful I hope I can find some useful information.

I am currently running Windows XP sp2 and am trying to install Linux Slackware.

I have been wanting to work on a *nix based MUD for a long time but there was no Windows port for it. You have to use the *nix compilers to run it. Plus I've always wanted to see how the better half lives under Unix or Linux. I have heard very good things about these OS's.

Looking at the install packages and command-line driven setups, I was very intimidated. No setup.exe or anything easy like that.

Well, the other day I decided to take the plunge and became determined to install Slackware on my pc. I was immediately flooded with documentation on HowTo's of the setup process and the more I read, the mroe confused I got.

I got PartitionMagic and made a Linux partition of *4GB*. I dont plan to use alot of programs just yet and if I decide to only use Linux i'll do a clean install sometime later. I read alot of places say to make a swap partition but it's not mandatory so I just skipped that for now. I just want to get this OS up and running so I can see it.

Now here's where the problems lie:

I burned the slackware 10.2 ISO's to CDs (all 4 of them).
My BIOS was set to boot from CD-ROm then Floppy, etc. I reboot my pc with Slackware ISO disc1 in the CD drive, but the screen just stays blank and nothing loads. I figure I did something wrong somewhere. I tried burning a DVD ISO with the whole setup on it. Still would not boot.


So I do some more reading. "If you're CD won't boot for whatever reason, make floppy boot/root disks." So I get out my pack of floppys and start writing to them. I have the bare.i kernal bootdisk and the install.1 and install.2 rootdisks in hand.

Stick in the bootdisk and reboot pc. WOW, something works. At the bottom where it says "boot:" I tried many different parameters because I didn't really know what to type. The last thing I tried was just leave it blank and hit Enter. That worked. Rootdisks seem to load up fine.

Now I'm looged in as *root* and type "setup".

I click the "target partition" so setup recognizes it. Then I go to *source files* or whatever it was and choose Source From CD/DVD because that's where the setup files are. It says *detected Slackware CD on the following drive: /dev/hdd*
Great. I thought I was almost done here. But it still won't detect whats ON the install disc so I can't install any packages. So then I tried putting the entire slackware setup in various directories on the HD to load from. Went back and found out you have to have the install files on FAT or Linux partition. Great. So now I have 4 Cds, a DVD, a bunch of setup files on my HD and I'm stuck.

If i make a FAT partition to boot the install files from, it only goes up to 2GB or something, and I cant put all the install files in it.

I have to be missing something simple.

Do I *have* to make the Linux partition bootable? Is that what I've been doing wrong? Because I do remember not having it bootable. I thought the bootdisk/rootdisks would work just fine until I get everything setup then I would go back to Windows and make a Dual-Boot Menu.

Also PartitionMagic has a litle thing where you can *Install a New OS* and it guides you through everything. But at the end it says *Once you click this, the new partition will be your active drive so you must install the new OS now." And so far I can't get the install disks to boot so I'm not sure if I should do it or not> If I do, and the install disk still doesn't work, then my pc will be kinda screwed. (I think I can use the bootdisk and go into fdisk and erase that partition or change it if it doesn't work, so I guess my pc will still be ok. But that's alot of trial-and-error I'm hoping to avoid if I can)

Anyway thanks for reading this and if anyone can give some tips, I would certainly appreciate it because like I said, the more I keep reading guides on installing Slackware, the more confused I get.
 
Old 08-25-2006, 04:40 PM   #2
debiant
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I would suggest next time being a little less -vvv (verbose) so that people can get to the root of your problem without starting out "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." :P

But seriously. It would be advisable to make linux bootable yes. I noticed that you were trying to install on a vfat (fat 32) partition, You can't do this, because vfat does not handle permissions, you need to install to either an ext2 Linux partition or ext3. Linux can access vfat, but should not be installed to vfat.

Linux has it's own bootloader that will access both linux and windows, while (some one correct me if I'm wrong) Windows will not access Linux with a bootloader.
 
Old 08-25-2006, 04:52 PM   #3
blahblahblah
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Slackware might not be the best distro to start with. I think it's geared more toward medium to advanced Linux users who want a high degree of customization.

I've had the easiest time with Ubuntu, personally. It's really easy to pop the disk (you only need one) into a Windows XP machine, restart, and have a dual-boot machine ready to go in pretty short order. The installer will even resize the Windows partition for you (usually ), but it sounds like you've already got that sorted out.

As far as Windows partitions, NTFS read support in Linux is pretty good, but writing is another matter. If you own a copy of Windows, you can use Captive. Basically, you copy Windows' own NTFS drivers (this is why you have to own it) to Linux, and install Captive to be a wrapper around them, "translating" to Linux. FAT read/write is fine out of the box.
 
Old 08-25-2006, 09:42 PM   #4
m0n0xiDe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by debiant
I would suggest next time being a little less -vvv (verbose) so that people can get to the root of your problem without starting out "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." :P

But seriously. It would be advisable to make linux bootable yes. I noticed that you were trying to install on a vfat (fat 32) partition, You can't do this, because vfat does not handle permissions, you need to install to either an ext2 Linux partition or ext3. Linux can access vfat, but should not be installed to vfat.

Linux has it's own bootloader that will access both linux and windows, while (some one correct me if I'm wrong) Windows will not access Linux with a bootloader.
Sorry my verbose story must have came across wrong lol.

I wasn't trying to install TO a fat32..i was trying to install FROM fat16. One option (besides from CD/DVD) was to install Linux setup from a HD partition but the partition had to be FAT or Linux. I was just gonna boot in Windows, throw all the install files on a FAT partition, then reboot into Linux kernel and try to setup LINUX from that FAT partition

My Linux partition is ext3.

I think I will have to take blahblahblah's advise and start out with something easier.

This has been quite a challenge and I don't think my skills are up to par to handle it at the moment.

Thanks to you both for the advice.

"back to the newb camp i go"

PS: does Ubuntu come with the compilers that are in Linux?

Last edited by m0n0xiDe; 08-25-2006 at 09:49 PM.
 
Old 08-25-2006, 10:50 PM   #5
debiant
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m0n0xiDe
Sorry my verbose story must have came across wrong lol.

I wasn't trying to install TO a fat32..i was trying to install FROM fat16. One option (besides from CD/DVD) was to install Linux setup from a HD partition but the partition had to be FAT or Linux. I was just gonna boot in Windows, throw all the install files on a FAT partition, then reboot into Linux kernel and try to setup LINUX from that FAT partition

My Linux partition is ext3.

I think I will have to take blahblahblah's advise and start out with something easier.

This has been quite a challenge and I don't think my skills are up to par to handle it at the moment.

Thanks to you both for the advice.

"back to the newb camp i go"

PS: does Ubuntu come with the compilers that are in Linux?

Yes, just a different distro of Linux.
 
Old 08-25-2006, 11:51 PM   #6
m0n0xiDe
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sweet.

thanks again
 
Old 08-26-2006, 04:40 AM   #7
sh@rky
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Maybe you should try something like SimplyMEPIS 6.0. It is easy to install, and it has a good hardware support. Check it out! :-)
 
Old 08-26-2006, 03:25 PM   #8
m0n0xiDe
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Unbuntu won't boot from CD-Rom eitehr, same thing happens. When I reboot the pc with the CD in the drive, for some reason Windows XP load screen comes up, then a blank screen and nothing. This is what happened with the Slackware install disk. If i'm correct, when booting from CD, the Windows load screen should NOT come up. It should boot straight to the CD.

So now I'm at a new problem. I have went into BIOS and set my CD-ROM as the first botoable device. Same problem. However, floppy disks will boot. I installed a DVD Writer a long time ago maybe that has something to do with why CD-Rom won't boot?

Is there something in XP I can manually edit to make it force the CD-ROM to boot first? like boot.ini or something?

I guess i'll be forced to use some *Linux inside of Windows* app if works...

EDIT: i've done some reading, according to certain people, you can't just burn the ISO to CD to make it bootable. You have to burn the contents of the CD and choose to make it bootable. I thought ISO's WERE bootable. ARGGG

i'm not a complete pc newb and i've installed Linux on an old pc about 4 years ago...it shouldn't be this hard lol

Last edited by m0n0xiDe; 08-26-2006 at 03:48 PM.
 
Old 08-26-2006, 04:04 PM   #9
debiant
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m0n0xiDe
Unbuntu won't boot from CD-Rom eitehr, same thing happens. When I reboot the pc with the CD in the drive, for some reason Windows XP load screen comes up, then a blank screen and nothing. This is what happened with the Slackware install disk. If i'm correct, when booting from CD, the Windows load screen should NOT come up. It should boot straight to the CD.

So now I'm at a new problem. I have went into BIOS and set my CD-ROM as the first botoable device. Same problem. However, floppy disks will boot. I installed a DVD Writer a long time ago maybe that has something to do with why CD-Rom won't boot?

Is there something in XP I can manually edit to make it force the CD-ROM to boot first? like boot.ini or something?

I guess i'll be forced to use some *Linux inside of Windows* app if works...

EDIT: i've done some reading, according to certain people, you can't just burn the ISO to CD to make it bootable. You have to burn the contents of the CD and choose to make it bootable. I thought ISO's WERE bootable. ARGGG

i'm not a complete pc newb and i've installed Linux on an old pc about 4 years ago...it shouldn't be this hard lol
That should not be the case at all with the CDs. You're sure that the CDs are complete (you've matched the checksums). Since you have Windows, try putting the Windows CD in and see if it will boot from that. If not then it's something wrong with your bios setup. You said you have a DVD writer as well? Have you tried putting the CD into both drives?

Another sanity check, you're burning the iso image right, you're not just copying the iso file to the CD.

Last edited by debiant; 08-26-2006 at 04:09 PM.
 
Old 08-26-2006, 04:09 PM   #10
jstephens84
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I would setup linux with a swap. Swap is the same thing as paging files on Windows. I really recommend following this persons installation instructions for Slackware. As said it is a little intimidating but you learn so much and the slackware forum here is very good at answering your question. http://www.bitbenderforums.com/vb22/...?postid=311808
 
Old 08-26-2006, 04:40 PM   #11
m0n0xiDe
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Quote:
Another sanity check, you're burning the iso image right, you're not just copying the iso file to the CD.
it was something simple. I knew I was doing something stupid. I was copying files to the CDs. ARGGGGGGGGGG

Now that I got the image burned correctly, I tried installing Ubuntu I get the *falied to load the X server* (your GUI)
and a bunch of clustered text on the screen. It has a command prompt, but i have no idea what command to run to possibly fix this.

I have ATI graphics port built into the motherboard but I dont use that..i use Nvidia GeForce5500 PCI

so it's back to reading again..unless someone knows how to resolve this problem

Last edited by m0n0xiDe; 08-26-2006 at 04:43 PM.
 
Old 08-26-2006, 04:52 PM   #12
nomad888
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It sounds to me like the issue may be with the way the cd's were burned. What burning software did you use?

This is the easiest way that I have found and can all be done from windows:

1) Download a program called winmd5sum from nullriver
2) Download a program called DeepBurner free from deepburner
I have not posted here before so I cannot post hyperlinks yet. If you cannot find the progs you can google them, but
think dot com after the names I gave you.

After you download your iso files also download the md5sum files for each iso.

1) Open up the iso file in winmd5sum. It will take a few minutes to process the iso file and on an older system it
may seem like the program stopped responding but give it some time.
2) After the file processes open up the md5sum file in notepad and copy / paste it into the bottom box of the program winmd5sum.
3) Click compare. If the sums are the same you have a good iso download. It is well worth the time to find out
before burning the cd than during the setup process.

Once you have established that the iso files are good open up DeepBurner.
1) Click on the burn iso option in the window to the left
2) Browse to your iso file
3) click the burn button at the bottom of the window. The cd will eject when complete.

Thats it!! You are ready to boot to the cdrom and get started. This software takes out all of the guesswork that
alot of other burning software has when burning an iso image. This method will work with any linux distro.

I hope this helps

Nomad
 
Old 08-26-2006, 05:07 PM   #13
nomad888
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I did not refresh this page while putting in my reply so your post showed up after I submitted mine. I am glad to hear that you got that issue resolved and maybe the post will help out someone else who is having burning issues.

What does the bunch of text say that you are getting? You can type in startx at the prompt and linux will attempt to restart xwindows. If you are installing Ubuntu 6 I am assuming that you got the live cd to boot since the install file is on the desktop. If you are using an older version of Ubuntu then the live and Install versions are on separate cd's. If the startx command does not work you can try booting to the live cd again and check to see what drivers are being used for video.

Nomad
 
Old 08-26-2006, 10:37 PM   #14
m0n0xiDe
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I'm installing the latest Ubuntu dist. and I have the Live CD. It goes to a gui screen where there's a few options to install Ubuntu. Then when I click install...everything seems to load properly, then all the garbled text appears.

the text has a dialog behind it with the *failed to start X server. If you want to check the errors click yes* or something like that. But I can't select anything on the dialog because there is text over top of it and its got 2 or 3 words then about 15 spaces between the next set of words. The text just looks like something about the distribution. It definately should not be spaced the way it is. Then there is a command prompt and the bottom of it all.
I think if i knew some Linux commands I could probably get it going manually. I'll try "startx" tomorrow because if it doesn't work, Windows won't boot and I have to go back to my old Linux floppy disk and erase the new partition that gets created by Ubuntu.

Thanks I appreciate all of the help so far!

Last edited by m0n0xiDe; 08-26-2006 at 10:48 PM.
 
Old 08-26-2006, 10:51 PM   #15
Tinkster
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Try to run
X -configure
and follow that with (if it doesn't produce any errors):
X -config ~/xorg.conf.new

If you get an error message from that, try posting that here.



Cheers,
Tink
 
  


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