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rxbanditboy1112 08-25-2003 06:15 PM

Redhat first boot blank screen
I just got linux i know nothing about it im tryin to learn but i cant get it to run... so heres wat happens i have windows 2000 and linux insalled just great runing off the lilo loader and then linux boots however after booting the screen just goes blank and i cant do ne thin i press ctrl-alt-f1 takes me to the prompt but commands dont do ne thin ctrl alt f2 and there a lil blinking cursor... i knwo its a video card issue i just dont know how to fix it i have a asylum geforce fx 5600 with 256 mb ram and the rest of the specs are normal o i have redhat 9.0 pro and linux thinks my video card is vesa generic or whatevr i need heklp pahlease.....

rxbanditboy1112 08-25-2003 06:49 PM


Thetargos 08-25-2003 07:25 PM

Ok, it may be generic the rest of you hardware in Windows, but Linux treats hardware a little different. What chipset does your motherboard has? What type of RAM do you have? What processor, etc?

My first recommendation would be to pop in the first CD, and when the RH linux boot install prompt appears, type linux rescue, a boot process will start and the installer will try to find your previous install of RH. You should answer the questions and when the system prompt appears, type:

chroot /mnt/sysimage
Then you should be under that directory which is the directory containing your "root" linux tree. Now for the sake of gettin your system to work, open the file inittab, located at /etc/ with vi (the text editor supplied with RH) with this command:

vi /etc/inittab
You'll need to edit just one line in the file, to change your current run level (think of it as if you would boot to DOS on Win95 or into GUI Win95 [X]). To start editing the file you need to press the insert key (and the actio will be displayed at the bottom left corner of the screen). Change this line (it is just below those pund signs followed by numbers):

Change the number 5 there to 3 (to boot into console instead of the XWindow System. Now you can save the file. To do so, you'll need to exit insert mode and enter to command mode in vi, you do that with the ESC key. Now just type :x (a colon and an x) this should bring you to the command line again. Now just type "exit" (without quotes) two times to reboot the computer, let linux boot and see if the boot process takes you to the command line, which should look like this:

Red Hat Linux release 9 (Shrike)

Log in as root (type root and then the password you entered during installation) and try to start X from there with the command:

If the GUI does not comes up, you should get a lot of messages printed to the screen, you may see what went wrong if you look at the file /var/log/XFree.0.log, what we'd be looking for are messages starting with (WW) or (EE) (warnings and errors), once you have done that, post those error messages here...

rxbanditboy1112 08-26-2003 07:41 PM

uh ya it after i typed root and my password it went to the black screen again and no gui um it gives me a bunch of errors i think i need to install the nvidia driver i have it on a cd the linux version. and ya i think thats the only problem i dont know how to install drivers tho :( help lol

Thetargos 08-26-2003 09:37 PM

Ok. If I understand you correctly, you could change to runlevel 3... and if you saw the errors, you typed startx, right?? Well first off, I STRONGLY recommend you to FIRST upgrade you kernel to the latets Red Hat 2.4.20-20.9 kernel (found on RH's FTP site). You will need the files kernel-2.4.20-20.9.<architecture>.rpm and kernel-source-2.4.20-20.9.i386.rpm otherwise the driver from NVIDIA won't install correctly (with the latest kernel). The new kernel has improved system performance plus a few security fixes. The <architecture> of the kernel will vary if your computer uses an i586 (Pentium classic, AMD K6 plain) processor, i686 (Pentium Pro, II, III, IV; AMD K6-2, K6-3) processor or athlon (found in the athlon branch on the FTP) ir you use an Athlon processor (Classic, Thunderbird & XP). To install those files you downloaded (make sure they are accesible in linux, eg in a CD burnt in Windows or a shared partition, one you can mount on Linux) you just need to change to the directory you downloaded them and type.

rpm -Uvh kernel*
This will update your kernel and update/install the kernel sources (need to compile the NVIDIA driver).

Then you need the drivers, get them from NVIDIA (the lattest release is 4496, make sure they have a "pkg2" in the name) and then just execute the autoexecutable archive-installer by

Note that in order to execute the NVIDIA installer (as it happens with any other executable file in linux) from the current directory (assuming you changed to the directory the file is located in, and did not type the entire path to it) you must precede the name of the command with ./ (dot slash). That indicates to your shell (the command interpreter, in this case most likely BASH) to execute the command from the current directory. Of course you may download all the files needed in Windows, burn them into a CD, and then just install them from Linux, first the Kenrel (and sources) then the driver.

Assuming you don't know how to access the cdrom from the command line: The drive, unlike MS-DOS will not be ready just by insterting it into the drive, you'll need to mount it first. To do so all you have to do is just to type the command (you guessed it) mount into the shell and specify the PATH to the mount point (a directory under your root tree), in most cases this will be the path (included Red Hat):

mount /mnt/cdrom
Then just change to that directory and you can procede with the Kernel upgrade/driver install. To try out the driver, just type X: it will give you a black screen with an X-shapped cursor that you can move around, then to exit from that (ugly) environment, press simutaneously ctrl+alt+backspace, that should bring you back to the shell, after you made all that, just re-edit the file /etc/inittab (as you did before) and change again the runlevel to 5. All you have to do next is to type.

init 5
And you'll be presented with the first boot GUI of Red Hat 9. The rest is self explainatory.

KingSalami 09-08-2003 05:04 PM

Thetargos you are a rock star, thanks for the great help, it got my X up and running with new kernel and Nvidia drivers:D

Thetargos 09-08-2003 07:44 PM


Originally posted by KingSalami
Thetargos you are a rock star, thanks for the great help, it got my X up and running with new kernel and Nvidia drivers:D
I'm flattered :o , glad to hear you got it working and glad to be of asistance to you.

Sinjinsun 10-22-2003 10:03 PM

ATI Radeon 7500
Okay, I have the same issue, but I'm running a ATI Radeon in a PCI slot. Does anyone have any ideas?

Thanks - I'm sooo confused, I'm new to Linux!!!

Thetargos 10-24-2003 03:20 AM

Depending on your Chipset you'll be able to run the ATi official drivers... that is if you and only if your chipset is a R200+. Other than that, you have to use the DRI drivers (installed by default with your distro) if glxinfo says that you have direct rendring: yes, then you are covered. Also check performance with glxgears. Hope this helps.

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