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Old 11-16-2007, 09:20 PM   #1
jesseruu
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Registered: Oct 2007
Distribution: Open SUSE 10.2, DSL
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Question Linux for old computers


Hey, I have a Gateway Solo 2500 and am trying to get linux installed onto it...
it has like 64mb of ram
and about 4gig of hardisk space

Currently I have windows 98 on it

I've Tried Damn Small Linux and it allways say's BOOT FAILED when i insert the live disk

I have also tried attaching its harddrive to another computer and installing it, but when i start the computer it starts with windows and wants me to format the drive i put linux onto.

I just want somekind of basic linux installed onto it...


Last edited by jesseruu; 11-19-2007 at 12:52 AM.
 
Old 11-16-2007, 09:43 PM   #2
theNbomr
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It sounds like the computer does not want to boot from the CD. If so, you may need to use something like smart boot manager which allows you boot from a floppy, and then a secondary boot drive, such as a CD.
Or, a second thought; are you sure your live CD is actually bootable? Have you tied any other bootable CD? Does any OS boot from your CD drive? Your hardware is definitely capable of running Linux. I have installed recent distros on lesser hardware.

--- rod.
 
Old 11-16-2007, 09:49 PM   #3
elfoozo
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Make sure you didn't use a CD-RW disc to DSL burn too. That era of CDROM could only read single layer media and some older drives can't access a 700 MB disc. They originally were 650 MB.
 
Old 11-16-2007, 10:10 PM   #4
jesseruu
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Smile Thanks

Thanks I will try Smart Boot Manager...

Yes I have booted windows 98 and 2000 on that cd drive, but thats the only OS that I can think of that i've run on this computer

The cd is not RW and is 650mb

Thanks for all your help
 
Old 11-17-2007, 06:12 AM   #5
lugoteehalt
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The box is more than adequate for Debian Etch I would have thought. You might as well have something good.

http://www.debian.org/releases/stabl...h03s04.html.en ffOh, and use enlightenment instead of an IDE, like KDE, it is better and much lighter.

Last edited by lugoteehalt; 11-17-2007 at 07:19 AM. Reason: The poisons rising from my gonads.
 
Old 11-17-2007, 06:57 AM   #6
mrrangerman
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I have a Gateway solo 2300 it's a pI 266 with 384mb ram and 5gb HD. The only Linux OS I had success installing on it is slackware 11. I use Fluxbox for a window manager which makes it usable.
 
Old 11-17-2007, 07:23 AM   #7
onebuck
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Hi,

I've got the Gateway 2500 Solo running Slackware 11. I could upgrade to Slackware 12 but why. If it's not broke don't fix it!

You should be able to run the smart boot manager to select your boot device.

Some of the newer distributions use a 'boot-load-size' that is 32 for the isolinux. This will cause errors for older hardware with a broken BIOS. The 'boot-load-size' of 4 was used for older hardware. But with the new 32 size used for 'boot-load-size' for isolinux with a newer BIOS that is not broken you will not see the error. Therefore older hardware doesn't implement the load with the 32 size. Newer BIOS implementation expect this size and will continue to load the boot loader file until the EOF is reached.

As for the Solo 2500, I will have to look at my system maintenance log to see if there is a problem. I don't remember a problem but that machine has been up and running for over a year with Slackware.

Last edited by onebuck; 11-17-2007 at 07:55 AM. Reason: grammar
 
Old 11-19-2007, 12:56 AM   #8
jesseruu
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hi again,

I have a gateway solo 2500

Should I stay with DSL or try something else?

I couldn't get smart boot manager working, how do you install it?

I think there might be something wrong with my cd drive. Is there other way of installing other than cd and internet?
 
Old 11-19-2007, 06:14 AM   #9
onebuck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jesseruu View Post
hi again,

I have a gateway solo 2500

Should I stay with DSL or try something else?

I couldn't get smart boot manager working, how do you install it?

I think there might be something wrong with my cd drive. Is there other way of installing other than cd and internet?
Hi,

You don't install the smart boot manager but use it to boot. You create a boot floppy by writing the image to it.

Code:
excerpt from sbootmgr readme.txt;
sbootmgr.dsk  This nifty little tool allows selecting various devices to boot
              from a menu, and even allows booting a CD-ROM in machines where
              the BIOS doesn't support it (or it's supposed to support it, but
              it just doesn't work).  If you have trouble booting the
              Slackware CD-ROM, you might try writing this image to a floppy,
              booting it, and then selecting your CD-ROM drive as the boot
              device.

              The SBM installer is available as a Slackware package (called
              "btmgr") in the extra/ packages collection.

----------------------------
Generic floppy image creation info:

To create a floppy disk from one of these images, use the RAWRITE command on
DOS or Windows.  For example, to make the first rootdisk image (install.1),
you'd put a formatted 1.44MB floppy in your floppy drive, and then run this
command:

C:\> RAWRITE INSTALL.1 A:

There are several versions of RAWRITE provided to handle most versions of DOS
and Windows.  If one version doesn't seem to work, try another.

To make the floppy images under Linux, use the "cat" command to send them to
the floppy device.  This command will make the first install disk:

cat install.1 > /dev/fd0
This is from the Slackware isolinux/sbootmgr/readme.txt but it would be the same for any other. Just create the sbootmgr disk. You then should see your bootable devices when you boot using the disk.

As for alternative method for an install, you could use the loop device to install. A good method presented on the Slackware forum is; SlackwareŽ12_Janux_NET_NoBurn_Install.

You could use this method for any distribution.

Another method would be a ftp install but that would require the internet; lmo-installer-0.2.iso.

What version of DSL are you attempting to install? Most of the modern distributions use the 'boot-load-size' 4 or 32
as I stated. You could see if your BIOS is current. I would have to look at my logs to see what level is available and if the BIOS is broken. My bet is on the BIOS being broken. I know the GW will see the sbootmgr, at least mine does. The cdrom was/is seen using the sbootmgr. You could go the older version route an load that level then go the upgrade route.
 
Old 11-21-2007, 03:01 AM   #10
jesseruu
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I finally got linux open with my computers hard drive with a DSL boot disk.

I created the boot disk with rawrwite.exe, as i said I already have created a 1 gig partition for linux so I put DSL 4.0 in there and booted from DSL boot disk and it worked.

But when it opens the colour settings are really weird and I cant find a place to fix them up. Everything goes into a really poor resolution. The only colours it shows are yellow and black It is so blurry that I can barely read the text
 
Old 11-21-2007, 07:48 AM   #11
onebuck
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Hi,

Quote:
Originally Posted by jesseruu View Post
I finally got linux open with my computers hard drive with a DSL boot disk.

I created the boot disk with rawrwite.exe, as i said I already have created a 1 gig partition for linux so I put DSL 4.0 in there and booted from DSL boot disk and it worked.

But when it opens the colour settings are really weird and I cant find a place to fix them up. Everything goes into a really poor resolution. The only colours it shows are yellow and black It is so blurry that I can barely read the text
Do you boot to the terminal or 'X'? I don't use DSL but I suspect it boots to the terminal.

If you are booting to the terminal then I would check the bootloader. For lilo.conf;

Code:
excerpt from my solo lilo.conf;

# LILO configuration file
# generated by 'liloconfig'
#
# Start LILO global section
boot = /dev/hda
message = /boot/boot_message.txt
prompt
timeout = 1200
# Override dangerous defaults that rewrite the partition table:
change-rules
  reset
# VESA framebuffer console @ 1024x768x256
vga = 773
Notice the framebuffer set to 'vga=773'

If you are booting to a 'X' login then I would boot to a terminal and use 'xorgconfig' to create a new 'xorg.conf'.

Code:
excerpt from 'man xorgconfig';

xorgconfig(1)                                                    xorgconfig(1)

NAME
       xorgconfig - generate an xorg.conf file

SYNOPSIS
       xorgconfig

DESCRIPTION
       xorgconfig  is  an interactive program for generating an xorg.conf file
       for use with Xorg X servers.

       Note that the default name used by xorgconfig for the xorg.conf file is
       system-dependent.   For instance, on some systems, xorg.conf-4 is used,
       and on OS/2, XConfig is used.

FILES
       /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/Cards
              Video cards database

SEE ALSO
       Xorg(1), xorg.conf(5x), reconfig(1)
I use my Solo with the framebuffer with no problems. My Solo has Slackware 11 2.6.13 and runs XFCE with no problems. KDE is to bloated for this laptop, even with 384MB ram. I like the Laptop as a good system maintenance terminal. I use ssh for all my systems via this laptop.
 
  


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