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Old 02-10-2004, 09:02 PM   #1
Registered: Aug 2003
Distribution: Windows XP Professional SP2/SUSE Linux 10
Posts: 122

Rep: Reputation: 15
Compiling a kernal(first time)

Hey Guys,

I want to compile my own Kernel but I've never done it before.

Will doing this speed up my trusty old PC?
My computers specifications are in my signature at the bottom of the post.

I'm hoping to do it in Fedora Core 1, as soon as I've finished downloading and burning the ISO's.

I could, if it's a problem, do it in another distro.
The distro's I've used (and would use again), are..
Red Hat 7.3, 8.0 9.0
Mandrake 9.1
SuSE 8.2 Professional
Any of the above I would have no problem going back to.

I really don't know where to start. My processors an i686, but if I compile the Kernal for i686 processor architecture only, will that cause problems if a program was written for 386 processor architecture?
(I'm really unsure about these terms, I'm an applications programmer lol, I use Java, C# .Net, VB.Net and Delphi. I stay well away from low-level programming )

What part's of the kernal don't I need, what exactly can I get rid of, what must I keep, what is optional?

Would it be best to try a distro, like Gentoo, where (if I remember correctly), you have to compile your Kernal at installation.
(I've never used anything but RPM disto's so far).

If I download and install Fedora Core 1, and want to compile the Kernal afterwards, is there a program with a GUI to help me through this, or will it be command line only?
(Not that I mind command line stuff, it's just a nice GUI makes things a little easier for the lazy )

Any links or information you could give me would be brilliant.

Thanks Guys,
Old 02-10-2004, 09:09 PM   #2
Registered: Aug 2003
Distribution: Windows XP Professional SP2/SUSE Linux 10
Posts: 122

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
P.S I'm EXTREMELY intresting in trying slackware 9.1, but I'm put off a little after seeing the page on software sets.

Looks really confusing.

Does this distro require a self compiled kernal at installtion?
Old 02-10-2004, 09:41 PM   #3
Registered: Jan 2004
Location: California
Distribution: Slackware 10.1
Posts: 190

Rep: Reputation: 30
I'm about to compile my first kernel, so sorry I can't help you on that. I can tell you Slackware doesn't require you to compile your own kernel on installation.
Old 02-10-2004, 10:20 PM   #4
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Rochester, MN, U.S.A
Distribution: Gentoo
Posts: 987

Rep: Reputation: 30
That page does look confusing to me. Slackwares install is very easy. As long as you understand the basics of how your linux system is setup you will do fine.
Old 02-10-2004, 11:40 PM   #5
Registered: Sep 2003
Distribution: Slackware 9.1 with fluxbox
Posts: 259

Rep: Reputation: 30
That page was just showing the different groups of packages availiable on install.

So you can selects whicih groups you want installed, etc.
The distriction of each group is given, and clicking will give you the list of packages in the group.

Don't worry, the slack install is very easy
Old 02-11-2004, 12:46 AM   #6
Registered: Aug 2003
Distribution: FreeBSD
Posts: 490

Rep: Reputation: 30
Try this

I've just done 2.4.22 on Slack9 - there might be something you can take here?

extract source
cd into source directory via symlink
make menuconfig
make dep
make clean
make bzImage
make modules
make modules_install

cp /boot/
cp arch/i386/boot/bzImage /boot/bzImage-2.4.22

gedit /etc/lilo.conf

copy previous Slack stanza - change image directive to


change label to what you want


as root

Old 02-11-2004, 02:10 AM   #7
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2004
Posts: 4

Rep: Reputation: 0
I Think Many Distro like RedHat, Mandrake, and Suse. Their Kernel has been Modifyed for their distro. So all applications and their modules in Redhat , Mandrake , Suse Distro has been set for running using The Kernel that have been modifyed.

Except Distro like Slackware, Debian, Gentoo using the Original kernel configuration from . so, you can dynamically Upgrade, comple, recompile the Kernel you want.


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