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Old 08-06-2009, 03:29 PM   #1
Rassendyll
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Knoppix Live DVD shows intro screen then goes blank on Compaq Presario


I am trying to run Knoppix from a Live DVD on an older computer. When I start it, setting the BIOS to boot from the DVD it shows the intro screen (Please press enter to boot Linux from the LiveCD), but when I start it, it goes to a blank screen and stays there. It is a Compaq Presario Windows XP Home Edition. I downloaded the ISO file and burnt the image to a DVD with a Windows Vista (also Compaq), and when I booted the Vista from the DVD it worked fine.
Does anyone know what the problem is or how to fix it? It you want any more information, I will do my best to provide it.

Last edited by Rassendyll; 08-06-2009 at 03:36 PM.
 
Old 08-06-2009, 04:52 PM   #2
thorkelljarl
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Which...

Is this the 5.1.1 or 5.3.1 DVD? The system goes through POST but will not boot the DVD? Does it show the KNOPPIX splash screen? Are you sure that the drive you are trying to boot from is capable of reading a DVD? You might try a KNOPPIX 5.1.1 CD to see if that boots.

The KNOPPIX 5.1.1 live-cd is often used because there are cheat codes that allow for the selective loading of kernel modules. A full list is included in a file with KNOPPIX when it is downloaded.

http://www.knoppix.net/wiki/Cheat_Codes


Have you tried any other of the linux live-cds as a boot test? If this machine has less than 512MB RAM, there may be a problem in getting it to boot a newer live-cd with KDE or Gnome, with lesser quantities of RAM leaving fewer and fewer choices of bootable linux.

Last edited by thorkelljarl; 08-06-2009 at 05:09 PM.
 
Old 08-06-2009, 05:17 PM   #3
Rassendyll
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It is the 5.1.5 DVD. It shows Knoppix in big letters at the top and has a bunch of options including a line with boot: and then the cursor. When I hit enter to continue, it says "loading linux" then a bunch of dots, then "loading minirt.gz" or something like that and a bunch of dots and then the screen goes blank. The DVD drive I am using is an external drive connected by a USB port and can read DVDs and CDs. I also tried it with the internal drive (which sometimes acts up, which is why we got the external drive), which can also read DVDs and the same thing happens. I forgot to mention this in my previous post, but I don't really care what distribution I use. I have tried CDs of three other distributions (specifically, Ubuntu 9.04, Fedora 11, and Vector 5.9), none of which worked either, although they showed their respective splash screens as well. I have not tried running them in the Vista. I can try the 5.1.1 CD, but I can't figure out how to specify whether I want the CD or DVD version. Another thing is that the computer has not had virus protection for a while, although I just ran a virus scan this morning.

EDIT: I missed your point about the RAM... I believe that it has 256MB RAM. If you could point out a distribution that would work better with this in mind, I would appreciate it.

EDIT 2: It's not 5.1.1, it's 6.0.1

Last edited by Rassendyll; 08-06-2009 at 05:45 PM.
 
Old 08-06-2009, 06:33 PM   #4
thorkelljarl
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?

I found no KNOPPIX 6.0.1 DVD, only a CD. The problem may be that you have a CD image burned as and to a DVD. You might try to download a copy of the 5.1.1 CD and use the cheat code "knoppix mem=256M desktop=xfce" or desktop=fluxbox if 5.1.1 does not want to boot on its own.

You might also try a live-cd of Puppy Linux or VectorLinux Light(note Light), both purpose built for older systems with low RAM.

I thought of using 5.1.1 because of the many parameters that can be set to get it to boot. It is therefore often used for recovering files when not much else will boot.


This is a list of cheat codes for 5.0.1 as found on-line.

ftp://ftp.tu-chemnitz.de/pub/linux/k...cheatcodes.txt

If you look at the download mirror list at www.knoppix.org and find the ftp for TU Chemnitz, you should see separate links to the CD and DVD versions of KNOPPIX.

As I mentioned, the cheat codes for 5.1.1 will accompany the 5.1.1 download. 6.01 has fewer documented chest codes, but you may try whatever you think you need for a cheat code and see if it works.

Last edited by thorkelljarl; 08-06-2009 at 06:48 PM.
 
Old 08-06-2009, 08:11 PM   #5
Rassendyll
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You're right... it does seem to be a CD version...
Anyway, I wrote a 5.1.1 CD and tried just running it, as well as using the cheat codes you mentioned and I still got just a blank screen. I wrote a CD for PuppyLinux using the file puppy-4.2retro-k2.6.21.7-seamonkey.iso. When I booted using that disk I got a splash screen and then the following messages:
Code:
Loading kernel drivers needed to access disk drives...                  done
Searching for Puppy files in computer disk drives...pup_420.sfs not found.  Dropp
ing out to initial-ramdisk console...
/bin/sh: can't access tty; job control turned off
#
I don't know if this was the right version of PuppyLinux, and I'm not sure I understand what all those cheat codes mean for knoppix, but I will fiddle around with the options and see if I can get it to work. Thanks for all your help so far and if I get anything to work I will post.
 
Old 08-06-2009, 09:49 PM   #6
jefro
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What happens when you try failsafe?
 
Old 08-07-2009, 07:54 AM   #7
Rassendyll
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It went through a couple screens of text then said "Welcome to Knoppix Live GNU/Linux on CD" then "Running Kernel 2.6.19" then a line giving the total and available memory and then "Cannot find Knoppix file system, sorry. Dropping you out to a (very limited) shell". My guess is that it couldn't find the CD since I was using an external CD drive and since it was in failsafe it didn't load the drive. So I used the built-in CD drive, but when I told it to boot from that drive it didn't recognize it or something and went on to boot Windows. I think that is as a result of the internal CD drive not behaving properly as it sometimes does.
 
Old 08-07-2009, 08:54 AM   #8
Rassendyll
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OK, so I played around with some of the settings.
First I tried using knoppix no and then a bunch of stuff. That didn't work.
Next I tried knoppix acpi=off. That got me to the screen with the penguin, but it seemed to hang as it was checking something with udev.
So naturally I tried knoppix acpi=off noudev It got a bit farther, but then it started showing endless screens of text, repeating itself.
I decided to try switching from the graphics card we had installed to the internal one, and it works now. Thanks for all of your help!

EDIT:
I started to use it on the computer (where I am now, actually) and I opened the Konsole and it gave me the following message: "Konsole is unable to open a PTY (pseudo teletype). It is likely that this is due to an incorrect configuration of the PTY devices. Konsole needs to have read/write access to the PTY devices." Is this as a result of something I disabled while I was booting?

Last edited by Rassendyll; 08-07-2009 at 09:03 AM.
 
Old 08-07-2009, 09:41 AM   #9
thorkelljarl
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Notwithstanding that the questions may be redundant...

I would tend to agree that the system can not find the external CD again when it needs to load the kernel, modules, etc. I had the same problem once trying a live-cd on a drive connected to an ATA PCI controller card. However, the symptoms also might occur if linux can not understand the hardware or find the right modules to load. That is why I thought of trying Puppy and VectorLinux Light for their good support of older hardware.

http://www.puppylinux.org/downloads/...uction-release

http://vectorlinux.com/downloads


How are you getting the system to boot from the external CD? Are you using a one-time boot menu at POST or is the BIOS set to boot from a CD drive and the BIOS finds the external drive? When you try to boot from the internal drive, do you have the external drive connected to the system? If you have both a boot menu and booting the CD from the BIOS, I assume you have tried both ways.

When I have a problem with getting older systems to boot, I look at the BIOS boot settings, and then check to see if I can find a BIOS update and flash the BIOS.

Does the drive function in general, that is spin up, mount, play CDs, etc., or just have problems with booting? Assuming that it's old, have you ever cleaned it? Is it removable, and have you tried to take it out and put it back in, checking for dirt and a good connection?
 
Old 08-07-2009, 09:51 AM   #10
thorkelljarl
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Well done...

The graphics was likely the final problem.

You can use the command as root "lshw" in a terminal to see what your hardware is identified as and "lsmod" in a terminal to see what modules are loaded and working. That might make it easier to get some other version of linux to boot if you find KNOPPIX too old or limited. For more programs, there is a 5.1.1 and 5.3.1 DVD.
 
Old 08-07-2009, 10:21 AM   #11
Rassendyll
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Unfortunately, whenever I open a terminal program (Konsole) it gives the error message "Konsole is unable to open a PTY (pseudo teletype). It is likely that this is due to an incorrect configuration of the PTY devices. Konsole needs to have read/write access to the PTY devices." and then closes... Do you what is causing this or how to fix it?
 
Old 08-07-2009, 12:39 PM   #12
thorkelljarl
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NO...

Is there a root terminal available, or can you become root before you open Konsole?

What happens when you use Alt+F2 to open a run command box? Can you use the Options box to get to a terminal?

If you need a terminal interface, you can use those chest codes to boot into level 3, that is with the X windows manager but without any GUI or into console mode, with neither X nor a GUI.

I had never heard of a pseudo teletype before this, but the "devices" term does not seem to refer to hardware as such. You might google and try to play with those boot parameters some more.

Last edited by thorkelljarl; 08-07-2009 at 12:44 PM.
 
Old 08-07-2009, 06:59 PM   #13
Rassendyll
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I stopped using the noudev in case switching the graphics card fixed that problem, and the console started working...
 
Old 08-07-2009, 09:48 PM   #14
Rassendyll
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All right, so I decided to install knoppix on the hard drive...
Now when I boot from the hard drive, the internet won't work, but when I boot from the CD, it works...
I think that it is not finding the ethernet port for some reason. Any ideas? (If there is already a post somewhere else with a similar problem feel free to direct me to it...)

EDIT: I see now on the internet in various places that Knoppix is not a good choice to install to hard drive for this reason...

Last edited by Rassendyll; 08-08-2009 at 08:03 AM.
 
  


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