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Re: we need to start setting up for a new computer

On Thu, 4 Dec 1997, Fuzzy wrote:

> and want to install debian 1.3.1 (bo) on a new 6x86 p200+ based system
> that will be a server.
> I have the 2 CD distribution from lsl.com and the contents of the
> stable/non-free directory from an ftp mirror on a ez135 disk, (yes the
> new system also has a ez135 drive).
> (1)
> since I dont have access to a dos system, can I use DD to
> create the boot/root diskettes (or whatever Debian calls
> the 'starter system' diskettes)? 

Yeah, that ought to be fine. cat should do it equally well, like
  cat resc1440.bin > /dev/fd0

But you should really try to use the cd, it's bootable if it is an
"official debian cdrom". Set the bios to boot from the cdrom, put the 
cd in and turn the pc on. Tadaa!

> (2)  
> is there a doc/faq/other text file someplace that has basic steps
> to create enough of a system to start to use the tools actually
> install a runable system. I want to have a non-module kernel, (unless
> I'm forced by plug-and-pray to module some driver for hardware). I'm
> unsure how/what one does with plug-and-pray devices and PnP BIOS to
> associate IRQ's with cards/slots so that it is aware of jumpered
> selections of ISA controller/interface cards and doesn't select a
> conflict.

There is some documentation on the cd and on www.debian.org. It's nice to
have around during installation, so print it. It's not critical though.
Just follow the installation steps. If you're apt enough to know what's
inside your system, then it can't be much of a problem. 

After the kernel has been installed, you'll be asked what modules you
need. Just install the ones you really need to get your system through the
install and when you've been through all of the installation steps,

> (3)
> from what I've seen so far I'm guessing the floppy system
> installs a base system, then that is used to dselect the rest
> of the packages to make a runing system, is that correct?

One of the first things that happens is that dselect comes up. Tell it
where to find your cdrom, update the packages list, select the package
you want on your system and install them. 

ANYTHING IN THE SELECT SCREEN! or else you risk a dselect-fobia. Once you
know 10 keystrokes, you'll love dselect. If you don't you can get pretty

Be careful though, don't try to install everything at once! It is probably
best to take dselect's initial selection for granted and install the
defaults (unless you insist on sendmail instead of smail, in that case do
change the selections now, because it's a little harder later on.)

Next, when dselect is finished installing and configuring, reenter the
selection screen and select kernel-source,gcc and kernel package and
everything else these packages suggest/depend upon.

Once you finish dselect, do:

  cd /usr/src/linux
  make-kpkg clean
  make menuconfig
  make-kpkg --revision 3:custom.1.0 kernel_image
  cd /usr/src
  dpkg -i kernel-image*

Maybe you''l want to check on the lilo configuration and redo that, but
that is all it takes to compile a kernel on debian. You make a package and
install that. Presto!

> (4)
> we currently use PPPD run from inittab to keep our 'dedicated'
> PPP link active. if it dies, init respawns it. there seem to 
> lots of PPP rlated packages, but we are unsure if they are
> meant for dial-on-demand setup vs a always connected setup. 
> since Debian uses a different init and it wants things in
> different places than slackwares init does, can I still
> use init to run pppd (with all its options in /etc/ppp/...
> or some other location that Debian's PPPD is aware of)?

Sure you can, just install ppp and read the docs to be certain, ppp setup
might be slightly different from Slackware's, but I believe it's pretty
standard in Debian. 

BTW. all packages install their documentation in /usr/doc/<package>. 
Tip: install dwww, it provides a very nice web interface to that
documentation, all manpages and info (yes! no need to use the info
Another goodie: if you are going to use x11, also consider installing
package menu, which provides menus to your window manager for each package
that you install.

Good luck,


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