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Old 08-09-2006, 03:11 PM   #1
techwatcher
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Question Installing from nothing, with untested router


A few weeks ago, I tried to install MEPIS (from an earlier CD) on a brand-new Cisnet PC which had been running XP Home for 6 weeks. It was completely wrecked -- it even ate the CD. (They've given me an RMA, and when I can I will ship it back for repair.)


Please note I have been having very serious problems with a cracker over the past 2 years, and have no hacking skills myself. I'm also new to Linux (but it's got to be safer than what I've been running). The Cisnet is not the first PC destroyed by this creep, though it's the first that was brand-new, and running something other than W'98 SE.

Anyway, I'd like to try to get MEPIS running on an older box first. So I bought a used (at library sale, completely wiped) 2000 Dell box, and I have a new MEPIS CD coming.

Currently I've been running W'98 on my 10-year-old 'online PC' with a cable modem, via USB port, but it also has an Ethernet port. I purchased a used Linksys router (from Ebay), with 3 Ethernet ports for PCs (and 2 phone ports). Apart from my horrible experience attempting to install Linux I have never used the router.

So when the CD (v. 6, I hope) arrives, how should I attempt the install? Should I plug in the router and cable modem, trying it 'live' the first time I boot from the CD? Try to install without any connectivity first, then add a network after I have a system? What will be safest? Thanks.
 
Old 08-10-2006, 11:02 PM   #2
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I didn't realize I was asking such a hard question.

Several people advise installing all of Linux, and I'll try to do that, but that's not the same thing as initially installing drivers for all hardware. Should I or shouldn't I try to install with the cable modem and/or router? Anyone?
 
Old 08-11-2006, 06:12 AM   #3
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Hi techwatcher, boot from the SimplyMEPIS v6 livecd with modem etc on and enjoy, comes with IPtables firewall on and working. Hacker can't change your livecd, it's always ready to go clean as the day you got it.
Have a play around and see if all works as you want, when ready click on the install icon on the desktop.
You may want to read the howtos on mepis.org and the wiki at mepislovers.com to get some idea of the process. Or take the plunge and do-it. As long has it is a machine with no data on it you want to keep and you are not trying to dual boot, if anything goes wrong it's easy to just start again with the livecd.
 
Old 08-11-2006, 07:18 AM   #4
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Install with the cable modem / router connected. Check with the linksys website to verify the router's firmware is the latest and you should be protected. Your never going to be 100% secure with any connection to the internet but you can reduce the risks.
 
Old 08-11-2006, 11:03 AM   #5
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Thanks, guys (I assume you're guys ). I still don't know how that new Cisnet PC (with just one r/w DVD/CD drive) ate my older MEPIS CD... But the clean used machine I just bought has just a plain CD-ROM drive, so I hope the new CD will survive just fine in there.

Just in case, I might insert that router into this old W'98 connection to cable, and check its firmware. Thanks for that note. Then I will try to install MEPIS on the new (used) PC with everything connected, once the CD arrives.
 
Old 08-13-2006, 09:06 AM   #6
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Okay, after a very painful and intermittent hardware interlude, I finally managed to get the cover back on the 6-year-old PC, and installed MEPIS from the new CD.

NOTICE: I have a broadband (cable) connection. With the PC connected to router and router connected to cable modem -- everything on -- the PC would NOT BOOT. Obviously, I was unable to install MEPIS Linux under this condition.

I disconnected the Ethernet cable between cable modem & router, rebooted, and was easily able to install from the CD-ROM drive. (I had feared I'd have to use my W=98 SE floppy to load a CD driver, but this turned out to be unnecessary.)

After I had booted from CD, before installing to HD, I reconnected Ethernet cable, and the system installed perfectly, with connection live.

Now I just have one problem. I am using a Viewsonic LCD monitor (mounted over my bed, which is necessary because I am disabled, and computer lying down). Whatever card is in this PC, it's driving the monitor badly. I can barely read this, and to see the bottom of the screen, I used the Viewsonic's built-in LCD-based utility to push vertical way up. (I can't see bottom and top of screen at the same time.)

The MEPIS utility for monitor selection says I'm at 71 refresh (probably safe -- I can run at 72 or 75), and 1028x780 (or whatever, I forget exactly), which is fine for this monitor. But I don't know how to change the video card's setting, can't find the procs listing. (I tried man proc and no result.)

I can barely read this screen. Please help!
 
Old 08-13-2006, 09:58 AM   #7
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I forgot to mention, when I first tried to run from the CD, I had to choose an alternate installation, the one with VESA. There was just one tiny line of unreadable text at the top of the monitor under the normal choice.

I know there's a command to find what my hardware is, but I can't locate it. Can anyone give me a hint? (Meanwhile I'll keep reading RUTE. )
 
Old 08-13-2006, 10:35 AM   #8
michaelk
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The output from the command lspci will tell us the information about your video card.
 
Old 08-13-2006, 11:24 AM   #9
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Thanks, Michael.
output:
ATI Technologies Inc 3D Rage Pro AGP 1X/ 2X (rev 5c)

Unfortunately, trying to drag the console down I full-screened it. But I can close it and try again. Should I apt-get something, use Synaptics, or is there a utility built-in to MEPIS I can use?
 
Old 08-13-2006, 02:14 PM   #10
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To resetup the xserver for your video card:
1. move /etc/X11/xorg.conf to a safe location
2. run xorgsetup
3. fine-tune with xorgcfg -textmode
4. test X out

The mach64 driver will work with your graphics card.
 
Old 08-13-2006, 02:26 PM   #11
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Thanks, Michael. Will do (have to look up again how to do the SU thing first).
 
Old 08-13-2006, 02:56 PM   #12
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Okay, the SU thing was easy (just say 'su' on a console, and it asks for passwd) . But, when I typed xorgsetup nothing seemed to happen. When I checked the subdir, there was no new xorg.conf, either. After looking around for xorgsetup, I did a "find" for that program, and I don't have it on here, searching from root, as SU, with options to search subdirs, and without case sensitive.

Hypothesis: Since I had to run the install routine under the VESA option (just to be able to see the screen), xorgsetup wasn't placed on my installation. Can I use Synaptic to acquire it, post-install? I'll try that.
 
Old 08-13-2006, 03:25 PM   #13
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Well, Synaptic manager doesn't have it. Can I get it from the install CD somehow -- is there something like an inflate utility?

The problem might be, as I saw somewhere, my dpi is set to 100x100, instead of 96x96... I'm also not sure why my 'video card' is listed as "AGP" when it's not a separate card at all. The problem (the reason I can't install the Pro 97 card I bought for this monitor on Ebay) is that the display port is soldered (or connected, anyway) right to the motherboard on this old Dell PC (a gx1, low-profile form factor).

There doesn't seem to be a separate AGP slot in the PC, even if I were willing/able to wrestle again with that damned cover. I need a tower.

Maybe I should hire a cab to get to the Goodwill outlet so I can buy yet another used PC. Currently I only have an old Dell laptop someone gave me, a 10-year-old IBM Aptiva someone else gave me a couple years ago, a wrecked 6-year-old Gateway PC purchased just after Christmas last year from the Goodwill (from which I grabbed extra RAM for this Dell gx1 machine ), and a 10-year-old noname PC. LOL

I also have some loose CD-ROM, DVD (doubles as CD-rom), and CD r/w drives -- not to mention about 4 HDs. That's why I decided to invest $500 in the new (currently completely wrecked) Cisnet PC at the end of April. I'm in hardware hell. *sigh*

At least I can get online with MEPIS now. If I increase my text size (twice) I can read text in the browser. Maybe I should focus on getting that XP (Cisnet) machine repaired, and when it comes back, install MEPIS on that. Problem is, that has no floppy, so I won't be able to get information (reference pictures, for painting) to my offline laptop or PC.

Nope... I really need an online PC, running Linux for safety, that has a floppy, that can drive this monitor. And that's exactly what I told the CompUSA salesman when he sold me the totally inappropriate Cisnet (which has no Linux, no floppy, and also doesn't drive this monitor). Grrrrrr.

Anyone have a suggestion? Preferably something not too physically demanding, nor too expensive?
 
  


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