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loopback not up by default

I have a laptop with deban etch. When I boot up, the loopback device is not up and runnning,
I need to manually run 'ifconfig lo up'.  What could I possibly have wrong?

When I installed, I could not do an ordinary install because I needed the madwifi wireless driver,
which was not on the network install images. I had to download a couple of packages into
the Windows partition, and hand install them in debian until I could compile the driver. 
This means I may have omitted some basic package, since I am also new to debian.


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