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Old 12-23-2003, 02:04 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2003
Distribution: VectorLinux 4.0
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How can I install Slacware 9.1 without downloading ISOs or buying the CDs?

Hi All,

I was wondering if one can install linux without downloading the whole ISOs. Please clear some of my doubts regarding this.

First some info:

I plan on installing Slackware 9.1 on a Pentium 100MHz, 32 MB RAM, 2.1 GB Hard disk with CD-ROM drive and floppy drive, the display card is Sis6215c, Network card - Surecom EP-320X-R. The install will be a linux only install and not dual boot with Windows. The BIOS does not support booting from a CD.

The doubts are as follows:
1) If I don't download the ISO's and just download the folders from the ftp will I be able to install linux and get it working properly?

2) If I download from ftp what are the bare necessities (utilities, etc) to get Slackware running on the above system?

3) How can one write/burn a bootable cd if i download all the above folders as opposed to downloading ISOs and how should I separate these folder while writing/burning the cds.

Thanks in advance
Old 12-23-2003, 02:11 PM   #2
Registered: Jul 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada
Distribution: Gentoo
Posts: 720

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I think it's a little too slow. 100MHz unfortunately won't really cut it these days.
You don't need to boot of the CD neccessarely, you man make a boot floppy. You need some kind of Linux boot floppy to get it running, because the Linux binaries won't run on Windows.

No, you probably won't be able to install it, since linux boot floppyes can't see FAT filesystems. The system you'll make downloading the diretories, might not be too complete. If you really really don't want an ISO, why not install it over the network straight from their FTP, if slack supports that. If not.. I strongly suggest the ISO. It's packed, and compressed, the directories might be larger and take longer to download than the ISO.
Old 12-23-2003, 02:21 PM   #3
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2003
Distribution: VectorLinux 4.0
Posts: 7

Original Poster
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Teval, Thanks for a quick reply but it does not clear my doubts as to whether I can or cannot install Slackware 9.1. I thought one could configure Linux to run on 486 or systems having 4 MB RAM (I know it is a bit far fetched, i mean who would want to use a system with 4 MB RAM) and this install will be a pure Linux install and not dual boot with windows and if I can, what folders/utilities should I download?

Oh BTW, this is a secondhand system and is currently dismantled and awaiting fixing up so I thought that I would install and learn Linux as opposed to installing Windows 98

Appreciate your responses and help

Last edited by Cybarite; 12-23-2003 at 02:24 PM.
Old 12-23-2003, 02:53 PM   #4
Registered: Dec 2003
Location: Layer 7 =D
Distribution: Slackware, LFS, Rock Linux
Posts: 165

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I thought one could configure Linux to run on 486 or systems having 4 MB RAM
yes, you can....but don't expect to be able to run X ^^
8MB are just fine if you don't wanna use anything besides the CLI ^^
I i mean who would want to use a system with 4 MB RAM
me ^^ as my router and firewall =)
what folders/utilities should I download
dowload CD #1,
it contains everything you need and more, CD2 only contains KDE and Gnome...which are a _little_ too resource consuming to run on your box the way you want it, since they were created for more 'up to date' systems.
you'll soon love blackbox or fluxbox which are equivalent in functionality to the winblows gui. if not, try Enlightenment ^^

happy slacking =D

Last edited by poison; 12-23-2003 at 02:58 PM.
Old 12-23-2003, 03:02 PM   #5
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Registered: Feb 2003
Distribution: Slackware
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You can run Linux on a 386 w/4 megs of RAM, but not a current, general purpose distro. And the presence or absence of Windows doesn't affect much but the boot configuration and hard drive space. Except that I will say that, with Win98 and a FAT partition, you could install ZipSlack on a machine like that - it's not exactly like a full Linux running on a native filesystem, but it will give you the chance to learn some of the basics through practice. It's about a 100 meg download or so and, while you'd have to add the X packages and would be restricted to very light applications (fluxbox, rxvt, firebird rather than gnome, gnome-terminal, mozilla) it should work. I had a P100, 32MB, with only an 812MB hard drive, w/Win95... or maybe it was DOS6.22... and ZipSlack from the 9.0 version. The thing with a full Slack and a 2 gig hard drive is that you wouldn't be able to install all of it and have much room for yourself and couldn't *use* all that you installed, anyway.

Another option is Vector - also ran that on that box. It's a larger download but still smaller than a usual ISO - it can be installed with a boot disk - it can run on a native fs - and so on. X will be sluggish, but it works. Again - for a learning box, the functionality would be important than the performance. So maybe dig around those sites and find out more about them and they'll point you at what to download.
Old 12-23-2003, 03:52 PM   #6
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2003
Distribution: VectorLinux 4.0
Posts: 7

Original Poster
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Digiot, poison Thanks guys for your replies. Downloading VectorLinux and will try that and since it is based on Slackware I think it will make transition later to Slack easier . Thanks for all your help and advice.

Linux Here I Come
Old 12-24-2003, 09:12 AM   #7
Amigo developer
Registered: Dec 2003
Location: Germany
Distribution: Slackware
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Try my HOWTO on minimal install of Slackware. I use a 233MMX with 32MB RAm and a PI 120mHz with just 16MB. With 32MB you can rock along pretty good. have a look at my HOWTO for tips on saving space 40MB minimum install or 140MB with X ,Opera 7.22 ROX-Filer and more. I'm right now re-editing the HOWTO so by tomorrow it should be a little clearer, but it won't hurt for you to look. If you have a FAT partition the easiest thing is to use ZipSlack, but if you make the 6 floppies (1 boot and 5 install) then you can install packages that you have downloaded to a partition. The HOWTO will tell you exactly what you need and don't need to start.Minimal Install HOWTO


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