Download your favorite Linux distribution at LQ ISO.
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!


  Search this Thread
Old 06-20-2005, 02:51 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: Somerset, UK
Posts: 6

Rep: Reputation: 0
Computers hangs during installation of any distribution.

I'm trying to install Linux on my computers second harddrive (12Gb). I always manage to get past the selecting all the options and partitioning the harddrive, however, while it actually is copying files to the harddrive the computer freezes.

Strangely, it never seems to freeze in exactly the same place.

I have Windows XP on my 1st Harddrive (40Gb). I have tried to install Mandrake 10.1, Fedora Core 4 and Ubunta 5.04. All distributions I have tried seem to fail in the same way!

My computer is a Pentium III 450Mhz, with 384Mb RAM. My computers motherboard is Microstar MS6147 with onboard ATI Rage Pro Turbo 2x graphics and Creative ES1371 sound. My first harddrive at 40Gb does go beyond my motherboards limitations, however a Dynamic Drive Overlay is loaded as the computer boots, to overcome that.

If it helps, everything seems to work okay under windows XP, so doubt there's any serious hardware faults.

Things I've already checked: -
1) I've scanned the second drive using Windows Disk Checker utility and Norton Systemworks, including the surface scans. My drive appears to be fine.

2) I've checked my installation media for Fedora Core 4 using the MediaCheck facility which is part if the installation.

3) I've unplugged all USB devices (except the mouse, so I could use the graphical installers)

4) I've unplugged any cards inserted into the PCI slots incase they where causing any problems.

5) I've tryed installing from both my internal DVD-drive and my External CD-RW drive (USB)

6) I've tried using the text based installers rather than the graphical installer incase it was an incompatibilty with my ATI Rage Pro Onboard Graphics.

I'm completely new to Linux, but not completely laymen to computers. But this has completely stumped me. Can anybody shed any light on this for me? .... I'm completely stumped!
Old 06-20-2005, 04:17 PM   #2
Senior Member
Registered: May 2005
Location: Paraguay
Posts: 1,565
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 50
Thats really weird! Never happend to me.
I do not know what the problem could be. Have you tried a live CD like knoppix to scan the partition? I have installed both Mandriva and Ubuntu and both instaled fine.
Sorry if this does not help you.
Old 06-21-2005, 04:44 PM   #3
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2004
Location: Scotland, North of England
Distribution: various
Posts: 4

Rep: Reputation: 0
All USB except the mouse? Have you tried unplugging the mouse as well?
You should be able to navigate the graphical installation with tab, enter and arrow keys.
I know it sounds stupid, but i tried a Mandrake 10 installation not long ago, the installer did exactly what you're experiencing, until i unplugged the USB mouse as well.
Old 06-22-2005, 12:58 AM   #4
LQ Newbie
Registered: Mar 2003
Distribution: Installing Gentoo/Win 2003 Server
Posts: 9

Rep: Reputation: 0
Could be a bad burn? Did you burn the iso's to CD-RW or CD-R. I ran into a similiar problem with using CD-RW's. Also you could pull out your XP drive and put the second drive as your master and then try to install. You would would have to edit your bootloader or create a bootdisk once you swap your drives back around.
Old 06-22-2005, 02:27 AM   #5
LQ Guru
Registered: Jan 2002
Posts: 6,042

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
You should have made two partitions on the Windows drive (40 GB) because it does save you grief in the future. The first partition for Windows and the other for your valuable data. If you did, you do not have to use a TSR program or whatever Microsoft calls it.

Linux does not need a TSR (Terminate Stay Resident) program to find undiscovered capacity that the BIOS did not detect. Even if you use these types of programs for DOS/Windows, Linux will give you HAIL. Sorry, your 40 GB hard drive is slug to Linux. This is not Linux fault. It is these TSR programs at fault.

Use a 20 GB for Winows XP and to store applications. Then use the 40 GB hard drive for Linux. During installation make sure you make /boot be less than 32 GB (i think). The size of /boot should be between 16 MB to 64 MB. I suggest making it 16 MB because you will not lose space. After Linux boots it can handle up to 2 TB. What I am saying is the first partition and each partition have to be within limits of the BIOS, so making the /boot partition 16 MB or 64 MB will work. The unused space can be one big / (aka the root directory) although Linux does not use the geometry information from the BIOS. You can make a FAT32 partition for Windows, but it have to be within limits of the BIOS.

I strongly suggest that you do not use a USB keyboard and USB mouse because they can be unreliable. I suggest using PS/2 keyboard and PS/2 mouse because they are reliable. Unfortunately, kernel version 2.6.x has problems detecting PS/2 mouse if it is compiled as built-in. The PS/2 mouse should be compiled as a module. Normally, distributions compile PS/2 mouse as built-in which is wrong when using kernel version 2.6.x. The mouse will seem that it is working, but it will be jumping around. If this happens find the boot option to use kernel version 2.4.x. If you do not know how to do this you can try hit shift+numlock. This will turn the keypad on the motherboard into a mouse. Use the 0 (down-click) and . (release click). Not keyboards can do this.

Always check the ISO image with a checksum utility. If you use BitTorrent to download it, you do not have to worry to use a checksum utility. When making an OS CD/DVD always write at a slow rate. Never write as fast as the drive can go. A speed of 8X is maximum speed you should write for an OS CD/DVD disc. A speed of 1X will give you the best results which means the disc will have very, very low errors.

Kernel is the engine or the brains. Almost all operating systems have a kernel.

Built-in means that it is hard-wired in the kernel.

A module is know as drivers to DOS/Windows and Mac users.
Old 06-23-2005, 03:00 PM   #6
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: Somerset, UK
Posts: 6

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Thankyou all for your help!

I've tried a few of your suggestions, but still no luck! At the moment I'm only testing with FC4.

I've unplugged the usb mouse as suggested, and just used the ps/2 keyboard to navigate the menus..... no luck.

I used the sha1sum untility to check the integrity of the iso downloads.... all ok.

I reburned the installation CD's (onto CD-R's) at a low speed (x4), and checked them using the MediaCheck function in the installer.... again no luck.

I even tried installing from the iso files directly from a fat32 partition, which FC4 enables you to do.... and again no luck!

The only thing I haven't tried yet is swapping the master/slave drives or fiddling with all the partitions to negate the need for the TSR (as suggested by Electro).... That's going to be my project for the weekend... :-)

I'll let you know on here how I get on, but this is starting to get frustrating now.. don't think it's going to be long before I throw my computer through the window!!!!

Old 06-23-2005, 03:23 PM   #7
Senior Member
Registered: May 2005
Location: Paraguay
Posts: 1,565
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 50
Hope it works!
Old 06-25-2005, 03:20 PM   #8
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: Somerset, UK
Posts: 6

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Thanx for everybodies suggestions!

I now have managed to get a working installation of FC4 onto my computer.

I figured the problem to be a faulty harddrive. The 12gig drive that seemed to work perfectly under windows just doesn't work under linux (well for the installation at least). I replaced the drive with a spare 10gig harddrive that I have borrowed off a mate.... and hey presto!

I find it hard to understand how a harddrive can be fine for windows but faulty under linux.... perhaps someone has the answer to that? especially after I checked the drive with every untility I could get my hands on.

Anywho... just one more question if I may.... a very quick one... My monitor is a Maxdata Belinea 102010 15" that has a max resolution of 1024x768. Unfortunately FC4 would not work with the 1024x768 resolution with 'Generic Monitor 1024x768' type selected in the setup. Nor was there a monitor type specific to my model in the options. To get the computer working at my prefered resolution I tried setting the monitor at some other completely different monitor type.... I chose the 'Packard Bell 1020', which seems to work perfectly!

Is it likely to cause me any problems selecting a monitor type that is completely different to my actual monitor being used?
Old 06-25-2005, 03:49 PM   #9
Registered: Oct 2004
Location: Poland
Distribution: Slack 10.1, Mandrake 10.1
Posts: 118

Rep: Reputation: 15
I think no. If it works, maybe it is not so diffrent.
Works - be happy
Old 07-19-2005, 03:43 AM   #10
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jul 2005
Posts: 1

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
harddrive/FEDORA Problem ?

I am experiencing almost the same problem:
installing FC 4 on second drive (6 GB Samsung drive), 1-st drive (60 GB MAXTOR) having XP installed on it, and setup refuses to complete. Always getting freezes after all input required for installation is finished (at the file copying part) at random package installation (crash does not occur at same point). Only way to reboot is manual reset button on PC case. Also using USB (wireless) mouse.
I tried installing FC 3 too but same problem: just never managed to complete an install. I said almost same problem because I previously managed to install Slackware 10.1 sucessfully on this machine, on same 6 GB drive, without any fuss.
After each ruined installation harddrive must be reformatted or at least all data erased because the next FC3 (or 4) setup attempt will freeze while "Checking for installed Fedora installations".

System config :
AMD Barton 2600+ CPU
Abit nf7-s2 MoBo (nForce 2 Ultra chipset)
512 MB DDR
GeForce 3 Ti200 VIDEO
OnBoard Sound
OnBoard NIC
Surecom PCI NIC

I will probably try installing on another harddrive or installing another distro, just wanted to let ppl know there might be a general issue (i thought it was FC related), probably a bug here.
Old 07-21-2005, 08:44 AM   #11
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: Somerset, UK
Posts: 6

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Strangely enough, it was a Samsung drive that I was using as may second drive on which I was trying to install FC too.

Just thought I'd mention it incase there was a link.


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
How can I write Installation scripts for my LFS-5.1.1 distribution alihamza Linux From Scratch 2 09-13-2005 04:11 PM
installation of any distribution javroch Linux - Hardware 11 04-19-2005 07:16 PM
Mandrake 10.1 Installation hangs at Installation of Bootloader dnl Linux - Software 12 01-08-2005 07:48 AM
How to update packages within Fedora Distribution before installation Raskolnikow Linux - Software 2 04-04-2004 07:51 AM
Mandrake 9.0 hangs on boot at "checking distribution dependencies" patpawlowski Mandriva 1 02-02-2004 06:01 AM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:33 PM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration