I've seen loads of questions about how to install debian, and always
it can't be that difficult"... I was wrong.
My previous two installations were by transfering Knoppix to the hd and
changing sources.list to use sid sources only and then upgrading. It
permanent Knoppix splash screens and all sorts of other bits in menu
structures and filesystems, most of which I have left alone for the
safety. Over time I keep purging things I do not really need
depends don't stop me, that is). It is not bad, but it is messy.
I would like to simply install sid with a basic system and add the
applications I want. Is there no easy way to do this?
I am trying to put sid on a thinkpad 600E. I have failed with the 1G
CD downloaded from debian.org. I also fail with running debootstrap
from ftp, as described on www.uk.debian.org. Below are brief details,
very informative, I fear. I am quite happy to wipe it and start again
anyone can suggest a straightforward way of getting sid on the machine.
FWIW, what I tried was as follows. It is long so please skip it
have done this and might have an insight.
I downloaded and burned the 1G minimum CD for sarge, thinking to
and dist-upgrade. The installer sort-of works - but with a number of
screen errors (something about scsi-ide not being available yet,
s/h thinkpad has no scsi interface that I know of). All the errors
looking at /target/var/log/debootstrap.log and debootstrap.error.log,
which remained empty.
Network interface card, a Billionton LNA-100B or the Sitecom rebranded
of the same as sold by Maplins) seemed to be working (I could ping the
machine from elsewhere). I could not ping out, so I added the stanza
to /etc/pcmcia/config as instructed by the maker, and tried
to /etc/init.d/pcmcia restart, but got an error: "No socket drivers",
whatever that means. Anyway I rebooted as the install script seemed
nothing else to offer and the new installation started but with no
all. It came up with strange double-height console text for some
Then I re-inserted the 1GB install disk, and rebooted to try again.
I tried the simple "linux" rather than "expert" route. The process ran
mostly unaided - apart from needing network configuration (mine is
not DHCP). After retrieving a long list of items it gave a blue screen
_that_ blue screen...) for a while and then exited with "debootstrap
exited with error..." and /target/var/log/debootstrap.log now showed
"/target/usr/bin/awk: file exists" (nothing else). --error.log still
As the system was running, and I could manually start networking, I
kernel and boot stuff, and the networking stuff all from target to the
filesystem, intending to run lilo and see what happens on reboot. Lilo
"warning: '/proc/partitions' does not match '/dev' directory
Name change '/dev/ide/host0/bus0/target0/lun0/disc' -> '/dev/hda'"
I was puzzled by these strange long names in place of the /dev/hda when
partitioning. No idea why that happened.
Before actually rebooting, while it was running with a working
thought to try the instructions given at uk.debian.org, and ran
"/usr/bin/debootstrap --arch i386 sid /mnt/debinst \
This seemed to run well. It retrieved and validated a long list of
stuff, then began extracting them. the 18th file it tried to extract
e2fsprogs, and there it halted with "tar: unrecognised file type"
There seems to be no way round that sort of problem for a simple user
so I went back to trying to boot the system as partially set up
boots, again in the useles double-height font, but thinks eth0 does not
exist, so I cannot configure networking to continue downloading.
At this point, I am out of skills and ideas, so ready to try any
It seems that Knoppix is the only way to install, unless anyone can
at a better one. I had considered the chroot method, but as I always
networking on any reboot from whatever basic install, I can't see how
can be made work, even if I can understand it.
TIA (and apologies for length)
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