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Re: install from a pile of floppies?

Hello Rodin,

On Tue, 11 Apr 2000, Josip Rodin wrote:
> Is it really still possible to install Debian completely from floppy disks?

Yes, it definitely is.

> If so, has anyone done it recently? :)

I never did it another way, as I don't have neither a CD-ROM drive nor a
Internet Connection that is fast enough to do an install from the net in 
reasonable time on my private PC at home. But I have Fast Internet Access
at University and Access to a Floppy drive there.

Here's how I did it:
Get the boot-floppies and the base system, write the images to floppies,
I installed many other packages the following way:
I put the .debs in my home-directory at university.
Then I did:

'tar cMf /dev/fd0 some_real_big.deb'


'tar cMf /dev/fd0 some_directory_with_debs/'

this writes the debs to a multivolume archive, when one floppy is full,
the tar-program will demand for the next.
To extract them put in the first floppy and then do:
'tar xMf /dev/fd0' 
And put in the floppies in order, as tar demands them.
The files will be extracted and written to the harddisc (in whatever
directory you currently are).
Then you can run dselect using the install-method from a mounted
file-system and give the correct parameters for the directories, where the
debs can be found.

Of course, this method demands that the tar utility is installed on the
computer, where you want to write the floppies.

I agree, that this method is a bit clumsy, but it worked very well for me,
as you can decide, which packages and how many are to be put together in
an archive.


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