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Re: Install with no removable media

On Tue, Dec 10, 2002 at 11:15:22AM -0800, Joe Sprankle wrote:
> I have a Toshiba prot?g? laptop with no floppy or CD-ROM drive. I am
> currently running Slackware which I installed via a PCMCIA CDROM that
> I no longer have access to. Can I copy the Debian cd to a separate
> partition and have lilo boot from there? If so what would the lilo
> entry look like.  any ideas appreciated.  Thanks, joe


I did something like this when I switched my Vaio laptop from RedHat to
Debian.  It was a bit of a trial though...  I also wanted to wipe my
partitions and join them (there were 3, I only wanted 2).

first backup your data.  twice.

I used the swap partition as my guinnee pig.  Turn off swap.
reinitialize swap as ext2.  download the debian base distribution.
uncompress the base system onto the ex-swap.  set lilo to boot from it.
copy the compressed base system onto the ex-swap.  boot to the ex-swap.
remap the rest of the partitions (luckily my swap wasn't in between
them).  uncompress the base system onto the new partition, set lilo to
boot from it.  reboot.  re-enable swap.  apt-get fvwm, emacs, gimp, etc.
just list a couple big packages and pretty much everything else gets
include because of dependancies.

You have to be *very* careful every time you boot from a new device.
Since there is no removable media, if you screw up one of these steps,
the machine will be unbootable; you'll have to take out the drive, put
it in someone elses laptop that has boot media, fix it, and put it back.
No fun at all.

but there was something particularily satisying about doing a complete
fresh installation of a new system without boot media...  ;)


Ben Hartshorne     benAThartshorneDOTnet     http://ben.hartshorne.net
PGP keyserver:pgp.dtype.org          Please encrypt all communications

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