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Re: Installation instructions.

On Fri 04 Dec 2020 at 22:56:41 +1100, David wrote:

> On Fri, 4 Dec 2020 at 20:00, David <bouncingcats@gmail.com> wrote:
> > Looking now, I can confirm that I did a Debian installation here on 20
> > Oct 2020 using these files. There is no doubt because they are still
> > on the hard drive.
> Actually it was 14 Oct, just for the record :)
> I have just now done another fresh install, this time using the same 3 files
> on a blank hard drive, it worked to completion without your complaint
> occurring.
> Due to actually going through the entire procedure on a blank drive
> so as to catch any unanticipated hiccups due to the process being
> different to my usual one, I can add some more thoughts about that:
> 1) grub needs a partition table on the target device so it can do
> embedding, so the target device can't be an entire block device (eg
> sdx) it must be a partition[*] (eg sdxN where N is some natural number)

> 2) And you probably need at least N=2 on an older machine.
> If there is sufficient RAM, the installer offers to load itself
> into RAM which frees up the partition where the iso is, so that it can
> be overwritten by the new install. If the RAM is insufficient this is
> not possible, so the partition where the iso is must be specified
> "do not use" because it is mounted and in use by the installer, so
> the new install must be done into another partition. I would
> deal with this by converting our installer boot partition to a /boot
> partition manually after the install is complete and rebooted
> into the new partition.

Suppose vmlinuz, initrd.gz, grub.cfg and the ISO are on a USB stick. The
stick can be booted and the installation done to a hard drive, which I
would guess is common place to put it. This avoids having to consider
the memory situation or mess with the installation afterwards.

Those users who cannot boot from a USB stick can have vmlinuz, initrd.gz
and grub.cfg on the hard disk and the ISO on a USB stick, where it should


> 3) The grub.cfg I used was
> menuentry 'Debian Installer' {
>   insmod part_msdos
>   insmod ext4
>   set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
>   linux /vmlinuz priority=medium
>   initrd /initrd.gz
> }
> I suggest the use of priority=medium which allows you to
> choose which [*]partitions are searched for the iso, which might help.
> Once the problem is resolved you can remove that or
> change it to what you prefer: low or high (which eg specifies
> that only a few high priority questions are asked during install).

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