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Old 08-28-2003, 02:49 AM   #1
bigjohn
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debian woody - installing?


They arrived, they arrived.

My new shiney debian woody dvd and the updates cdrom.

Yippee. Well, maybe

So I already have mandrake 9.1 installed. My 120 gig hdd is partitioned up so it has windows, a 1 gig linux swap partition, about 50 gig's for mandrake formatted as ext3fs and about 50 gig's of space formatted as ext2 for the "Woody".

So, how do I check that the "swap" is switched on/activated for mandrake?

Do I then need to activate it for the debian install?

And as when I put the dvd in the drive and started the boot I get to the bit where it wants to do a "read only" check for bad blocks and I put the disc in at about 0630 and it had only got about a third of the way through checking (about 3,000,000 of about 11,000,000) in an hour and a half,

Do I really need to do this check if it's gonna take so long??

regards

John

p.s. this is probably the first of a "blizzard" of questions.
 
Old 08-28-2003, 03:11 AM   #2
LSD
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The best tip I can give you about installing Woody is simply not to bother, get Sarge or better yet, Sid. The packages in Woody are so ancient (and yes, I'm fully aware of why they're so ancient but that doesn't mean I have to appreciate it.) that it's really not worth your time. If you must install it, be sure to change your sources list to point to an unstable source and do an apt-get update && apt-get dist-upgrade shortly after you finish. Sid may not have the absolute latest packages in all cases (it's XFree for instance is only 4.2.1, latest is 4.3.0) but it's light years ahead of Woody.
 
Old 08-28-2003, 03:13 AM   #3
footfrisbee
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Why do you have a 1 GB swap?
 
Old 08-28-2003, 05:07 AM   #4
Axo
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Re: debian woody - installing?

Quote:

So, how do I check that the "swap" is switched on/activated for mandrake?
I guess you could mount the swap if it isn't already,also check "top"
to see if its mounted and working.
Quote:
Do I then need to activate it for the debian install?
During the installation it will ask if you want a swap partition and then ask you to activate it .You could of kept your swap size to only double your ram , but i guess space isn't an issue with that size drive.
Quote:
And as when I put the dvd in the drive and started the boot I get to the bit where it wants to do a "read only" check for bad blocks and I put the disc in at about 0630 and it had only got about a third of the way through checking (about 3,000,000 of about 11,000,000) in an hour and a half,
Do I really need to do this check if it's gonna take so long??
I wouldn't bother , I've never done it, and never had any problems.

Regards AXO
 
Old 08-28-2003, 09:28 AM   #5
bigjohn
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Many thanks for the hints and tips Chaps,

The result of the "top" command tell me this

Swap: 1028120k total, 0k used, 1028120k free, 182092k cached

So I presume that it's working OK so when the debian install asks me if it want's to initialize it, I'll tell it yes.

In response to footfrisbee's ???, I set it at 1 gig, because I have 768 of physical memory, and 1 gig was a nice round number - and I didn't reckon that I'd need to double the physical memory.

Thanks for your suggestions LSD, I figured that I'd install woody for the learning curve and too "suss" it out. One of the blokes at my LUG is on the developers list for debian, so I figured I'd pick his brains a bit and establish the stability of sarge and sid, and then do the updates with apt (though I've got to learn how to use it first ).

I'll go with AXO's comments about not bothering with the "read only block check". If it shows any signs of problems then I'll do the check later (probably overnight as it looks like it will take many hours)


I'll post back to let you know how I get on.

regards

John
 
Old 08-28-2003, 11:59 AM   #6
bigjohn
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Well, that was 3 hours wasted.

I can't even work out how to install it!

I have managed to get as far as dselect, but haven't got the faintest idea what I should install. There are so many packages - and as per usual, my lack of linux knowledge means that even sitting here reading the package info is rather pointless. I don't understand that either.

Any idea's as to how I can get a default selection of packages and go from there ?

regards

John
 
Old 08-28-2003, 12:01 PM   #7
bigjohn
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Oh, and also, I have managed to make the boot floppy, but I want to be able to boot it from the mandrake version of lilo that I have got installed.

I understand that I should be able to modify my lilo.conf or something like that, but what would I have to add to make it an option in the lilo install ?

regards

John
 
Old 08-28-2003, 01:05 PM   #8
LSD
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With regard to your first problem, welcome to the so-called "Debian Way": Horrendously overcomplicate otherwise simple tasks to scare the n00bs off and make those who put in the time and effort to learn how to jump through all these ridiculous hoops feel superior.

And with regards to the second, you need to add something like this:

Code:
image=/vmlinuz
        label=Linux
        root=/dev/hda5
        initrd=/boot/initrd.img-2.4.21-1-386
to your Mandrake lilo.conf but of course updating it with the relevant locations of your kernel, root partition and initrd settings.
 
Old 08-28-2003, 01:20 PM   #9
penguin_warrior
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just say no...

just say yes to tasksel and NO to dselect (and save the headache). tasksel lets you do a general install of general programs (do you want X, do you want games, etc.).
it won't install all games, just some nice ones.
then use apt-get install to install anything else you might want.

** if you plan on upgrading to sid or testing, don't install too many programs unless you have a fast connection or it will take HOURS (or 3 days of overnight downloads for stupid me). duh. oh well, we live, we
learn :,)
 
Old 08-28-2003, 01:22 PM   #10
penguin_warrior
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also, go to sid unless you absolutely have to have a stable system... unstable is more stable than anything in the windows world and VERY nice... i've only had one problem and that was a mozilla version that took 20 minutes to load, but that was fixed the next update i did!
debian is just too cooooool!
 
Old 08-28-2003, 02:38 PM   #11
johnMG
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bigjohn,

Little John here. If you plan on eventually moving up to Sid (or even if you don't) you might want to go with ext3 instead of the default ext2.

You want to use tasksel to install just the minimum (I had it install X but not "desktop environments". Then, after the install was done, I did: apt-get install icewm). Definitely skip dselect like penguin_warrior said. At one time I sat down and tried to learn to use it, and aside from the difficult interface, I thought the docs (for learning how to use it -- ex.
http://www.debian.org/doc/manuals/ds.../index.en.html
) were inadequate (YMMV).
 
Old 08-28-2003, 08:24 PM   #12
LSD
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You know, after reading penguin_warrior and johnMG's posts, I don't feel so bad about hating dselect any more...
 
Old 08-29-2003, 02:56 AM   #13
bigjohn
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Well, after going too last nights "LUG" meet,

similar things where said for me to try. I spent 2 hours trying to use tasksel for just the "graphical environment" though unlike johnMG I selected xdm, kdm and gdm.

The result being that it says that it is starting the world, i.e. kde and gnome, but it just drops me back in a command prompt and says "Fatal server error" as well as starting kde and starting gnome, + can't start xdm - not default window manager.

So I'll try and get started again, well boot into the debian and see if I can just run tasksel to get just xdm and then see if I can "apt-get install kde".

regards

John
 
Old 08-29-2003, 04:39 AM   #14
bigjohn
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Well, I have tried the just install X windows approach.

If I then finish the intall at that point and then reboot, I can't startx. I get quite a list of stuff that comes up, mostly seems to be notes (sorry, I've got no way of posting the messages - though if someone needs to see them to see if they're relevant, I'll have to go through the process again and write them down).

Anyway, the last note is about the nvidia drivers, which lists the cards that the driver is for. Mine isn't listed, as the list only seems to go upto geforce 3. Mine is a geforce 4 M420.

then it shows up the error as

No screens found
Fatal server error

Hence does this make sense? and can anyone suggest ways round it ?

regards

John
 
Old 08-29-2003, 06:41 AM   #15
LSD
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You need to grab the latest nVidia Linux graphics drivers from here:

http://www.nvidia.com/content/drivers/drivers.asp

But ignore the Linux/FreeBSD Drivers link as this is hardly ever updated and instead go for the three panels below it and select Graphics Driver, GeForce and TNT2 and Linux IA32 before hitting the go button. This'll take you to the absolute latest version of the drivers. Follow the instructions on the site and to install them and then run through the xf86config script to configure X making sure to pick a generic nvidia driver (when you get to the video card list theres a whole bunch of generic card drivers, the nv driver should be among them but you may have to press Enter to see the next page of drivers before you can see it) but as soon as you've finished, open the XF86Config file in a text editor (I use mcedit) and do a search on nv and make sure it's changed to nvidia (otherwise the new drivers won't work). Also, while you have the file open, do a search on GLX and make sure the line Load "GLX" is present and uncommented and the lines Load "DRI" and Load "GLCore" are either commented out or removed completely. Once you've made all the necessary config file edits, save the file and quit your text editor. Hopefully now the next time you try and startx you'll be greeted with the nVidia logo and X will start normally. If it doesn't work, you may have to push those plans to upgrade to Sarge or Sid forward because Woody's 4.1.1 version XFree86 may not like the new nVidia drivers.
 
  


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