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Old 08-06-2004, 12:37 PM   #1
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Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Talagante, Chile
Distribution: Slackware 10.2
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Running RedHat 9. Should I change to Debian???

Hi. I'm new in Linux, and I would like to know if it's worth changing from Redhat to Debian.

I got 3 Redhat 9 CDs. I installed them. No problems. But yesterday I got 7 Debian CDs. I think it's 3.0... So I tried to install it. Of course I got problems.

First, a question. Why Redhat uses a EXT3 filesystem, and Debian uses a EXT2 filesystem??? What??? RedHat is better??? or my Debian version is too old???

Anyway, when I installed, I couldn't start the X server because of this error: "no screens found" and then it dropped me to the VGA console. Well I thought: The graphics card??? I have an NVidia GeForce2 MX400. I downloaded the latest linux drivers from But I have them on the second computer.

The question is, how to transfer the driver from my Windows computer to my Debian, if I can't even start the X Server??? I mean, in that VGA shell.

Please try to answer both questions if possible.

Thanks in advance! GREAT forum!
Old 08-06-2004, 01:52 PM   #2
Registered: Jul 2004
Location: 1st Brillouin Zone
Distribution: Gentoo (not ricer Gentoo)
Posts: 165

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I can answer the first question, debian does actually have ext3 support. (all ext3 is is ext2 with journaling), you have to pass the kernel a special option to do so. I'd search the debian forum for that.

As for your other question I never got far enoguh in the install to deal with any of that.

As far as comparing the two OSs go, every debian user I know says that Debian everything about debian is great, except the install.
Old 08-06-2004, 01:56 PM   #3
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Registered: Aug 2004
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Debian comes in 3 major flavours. Woody is a very conservative and secure version but uses somewhat old filesystems and an old linux kernel.
Well I dont remember their names but there are also testing ( mix between Woody and Unstable) version and the most progressive but maybe unstable Sid distribution. You probably got the woody version. If you like you can upgrade from woody to testing/unstable but thats another issue.

So how can you transfer this NVIDIA driver ?
1. Debian should have an ftp server running. Try connecting to your Debian box via a windows ftp client and log in with your debian username and password (except root on most systems). Send your files and find them in your home directory.

2. Maybe the ftp client is not activated. Then you need to edit /etc/inetd.conf and find a line with "ftp" in it and uncomment this line by removing the "#" character at the beginning of the line. Restart and you should have an ftp server running.

3. You did not find such a line ? Maybe you havent installed an ftp server at all. Check out a ftp server on debian tutorial.

4. Do it the other way round and create an ftp server on windows and download them on your debian box by using the ftp command or any other linux ftp client. To use ftp just type : "ftp [ip address]". You will be presented a command prompt and there you type: user <yourusername>. You are then asked to enter a password and so on. If not sure type "man ftp" on the vga screen.

Hope it helped you to get started.

Old 08-06-2004, 06:06 PM   #4
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Michigan
Distribution: redhat 9.0
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what is journaling?
Old 08-06-2004, 06:57 PM   #5
Registered: Jul 2003
Location: portland
Distribution: debian testing
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debian 3.0, also known as woody, is the stable version. Type bf2.4 at the boot prompt (or hit F3 for other options). This will give support for ext3 and you start with kernel 2.4.18, instead of 2.2. With all this in mind, I ought to tell you that debian testing version (sarge) is about to replace woody as stable. By all reports, sometime in sept, this ought to be official. So, you might want to see about getting a version now. I don't know what is involved with changing woody to sarge once they change the stable version.
Old 08-07-2004, 08:15 AM   #6
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Journaling means that the filesystem keeps a kind of a journal where it notes down every change it makes.
Thereby it can later backtrace its steps in case you cut the power supply.


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