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Old 07-04-2003, 09:12 PM   #1
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Registered: Jul 2003
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hosed things overwriting RH with Mandrake

Hey There,

Not too long ago, I installed RH 9 and noticed it was a good bit slower on my hardware than RH 7. Then I attempted to open OpenOffice, and all I got as an abort error. So I decided this was a good time to explore other distributions, just for fun, and burned iso's for Mandrake 9.1, thinking that it might run a bit faster, owing to i586 optimization.

I booted from the install disk and got to the point where it began writing to the partition table. Then the install process hung, eventually displaying the fact that there was an error. I also was surprised to see that there was no "back" button in the installation process, as far as I could see. Powering down and back up again, I go to the same point, and requested it simply use the entire disk space, instead of dual booting with Windows98 (I haven't really used Windows for quite some time now). I run into the same problem.

Oh well, I decide to keep RH for now. Uh-uh...when I start up the computer now, I get a grub error and am dropped to a grub prompt. Okay....I didn't much of anything done with RH so far, so I'll just re-install RH. Uh-uh....When running the test option on the first RH installation CD, I'm told that the disk failed the test, and that I shouldn't use it to install. Worked well enough before....

Might this have something to do with RH and Mandrake possibly using different boot loaders by default (grub vs. lilo)? I know that I should probably fdisk /mbr or something like that....I can probably find an old Windows95 disk lying around somewhere, and probably the boot disk for the RH installation. What's the easiest way to restore the hard drive to a state where I can use the Mandrake installation CDs? I'm not worried about preserving Windows98 on it anymore.

Might a knoppix CD be able to fix this problem. I have been thinking about installing it. If so, what's the simple alteration to make in order to install it to the hard drive?'s what I've been able to do

I noticed this one website mentioning that if you had a bootable linux floppy, you could run fdisk and remove the linux partitions. I tried this. I got to the boot option and entered "linux expert". Before I get to any prompt, however, I run into a kernel panic, as init can't be found. Oh well....

I then try to reinstall RH9 from my CDs, skipping the testing of the CDs (failed tests previously). I am able to repartition the hard drive, and begin installing packages. When it gets around to installing openoffice (the app that failed/aborted when I had RH9 running, one of the reasons propmpting me to try out Mandrake), I am informed that there's an error loading it, possibly media related, possibly lack of memory (not the case), or hardware. I thought that maybe this portion of the CD is defective, so tried doing an install without openoffice. I run into the same error when it gets around to installing vim. I even try a minimal install. Same problem. Oh Well....

I find this Mandrake 7 CD set lying around and thought, if I could get this to install, then upgrading to Mandrake 9.1 might not be much of a problem. Mandrake 7 installed without any problem! I pop in the Mandrake 9 CD and attempt to upgrade. When package installation begins, I get dropped to a screen displaying the following information (paraphrased)

1....2...3....4....5... X server started successfully

install exited abnormally

<1> unable to handle kernel paging request at virtual address def95174

then some stack numbers are listed (also hexadecimal)

So know I thought it was a hardware problem (hard disk). But I was able to install all 950 MB of Mandrake 7 applications without difficulty, whereas the Mandrake 9.1 and RH 9 installs run into problems before installing 950 MB of apps.

I have Mandrake 7 running now, and it seems to be performing as expected.

Well the CD for RH9 worked before, passing the pre-installation test, but I guess it still mis-installed openoffice, because it would abort when I attempted to run it.

Now, it won't pass the pre-installation test. So I guess the CD is corrupted, but I'm still not sure if there's also a problem with the hard drive.

I was thinking of trying to re-burn Mandrak 9.1 CD's and trying again...if it still doesn't work...I guess I need to decide whether to stick with Mandrake 7 and just install any newer versions of apps that I want...or getting a new hard drive...never installed one...or just getting on a new computer....Walmart does ship cheap PC's with Mandrake pre-installed now....

Thanks again....


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