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Old 01-10-2011, 05:52 PM   #1
elhamda
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Live CD on Dell Latitude C400


Greetings, I need some help with installing a live CD on my old Dell C400 laptop.

My laptop has 256K RAM which limits me to a Linux distributions with a small footprint. Thus I am trying to install Poppy as it requires very little RAM. The laptop is currently operating on WinXP and I would like to keep it that way as much as possible. Accordingly, I would like to run Poppy in a live format from the CD drive. As far as I know running from any other source is not an option with this laptop. I down loaded the latest version, lupu-520.iso and burnt it to a CD-RW using InfraRecorder.

The laptop boots to the CD-RW and goes through all the gyrations of installing Poppy in the RAM but then nothing happens. I have a blank screen with a cursor on the top left blinking and nothing else happening. I have tried installing other distributions and have encountered the same result. I attributed the previous installation failures to the lack of enough RAM in my system, but now I think either I am doing something wrong or the laptop is not Linux friendly.

Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.
 
Old 01-10-2011, 06:29 PM   #2
MS3FGX
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It doesn't have anything to do with the RAM, certainly; 256 MB is more than enough to boot Linux and run comfortably (X is another story perhaps...). I don't think you are doing anything wrong either.

So the most likely case is that there is some particular issue with the hardware that is giving Linux some trouble. A quick Google search brought up this page, which mentions problems running X on the C400's video hardware. The page is unfortunately pretty ancient, and doesn't really give any relevant information for current Linux systems.

What other distributions have you tried?
 
Old 01-10-2011, 06:30 PM   #3
MS3FGX
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EDIT: Duplicate post.
 
Old 01-11-2011, 11:33 AM   #4
snowpine
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You might consider the "Wary" version of Puppy: http://bkhome.org/wary/

I haven't personally tried it, but apparently it uses an older kernel, X, video drivers, etc. for older computers.

Good luck!
 
Old 01-11-2011, 12:52 PM   #5
elhamda
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Possible solution

Thanks to all who have responded,

Good news, I came across this article,

http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/vie...240895&t=60173

and with much thanks to toadleyb who wrote it, I realized that a) I need to turn acpi off, and 2) that it is possible to boot from a PCMCI card. This morning, I booted Poppy 5.2 using the CD player and I am happy to say that I was successful in getting a live CD installation. It looks great and I have good resolution on the monitor and everything seems to be responsive. I feel like I have finally been allowed inside the Linux world so now on to discovering it. I am sure that I will be encountering other challenges as I begin to use it. Also I am going to try a USB boot using a PCMCI card. I will be posting the results here in this thread.

And btw, I had looked at the lanfeer.com article that MS3FGX mentioned and as was noticed, I found it outdated and not very helpful. I had previously tried to do live installs of Ubuntu, Xubunto and Linux Mint. It is possible that not turning acpi off was the issue with all of them.
 
Old 01-11-2011, 12:56 PM   #6
linus72
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yes, probably the issue with all the others also,
after Puppy, you should probably check out mainline distros like Ubuntu, debian, slackware, arch.
 
Old 01-13-2011, 01:09 PM   #7
elhamda
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Blank screen is back

The idea of using the pcmcia card to boot Puppy was purely a pipe dream. It seems that this computer recognizes the CD and the hard drive as the only sources of boot. It would have been nice to boot from the pcmcia card as the CD-drive on this laptop is an external one.

Thanks for everyone's help.

Last edited by elhamda; 01-14-2011 at 02:14 PM.
 
  


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