Installation walkthrough of Mandriva Linux 2006
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This page describes the installation I did with the clubmember download dvd of Mandriva Linux 2006 Powerpack. I have installed it and run it on my desktop system (zurich), my wife's desktop (neuchatel) and my laptop (samos) (see also the hardware specifications page).
To those who've already used or seen a graphical Linux installer this may not be exciting, but those who haven't and are curious are invited to give this page a good read. I hope that this information will help some uninitiated to take the plunge and give Linux a try.
I used 'use existing partitions' and 'install' instead of upgrade on both desktops and the laptop. I will do an upgrade from Mandriva 2005LE as soon as I find the time. It seems that in most cases 'upgrade' works fine, but in some it doesn't. (This actually used to state that it was quite a bad idea to upgrade instead of install the system anew - I think things have been improved a lot, the only thing is that you have to take into account what the release notes say about updating, and if you are so experienced with Linux you wouldn't be reading this page... In any case, I no longer find it quite a bad idea, I've upgraded it to thinking it's sometimes not a very good idea.) Your mileage may vary; if you use the 'upgrade' function and you have problems, you may first want to do a clean install to see if that helps. BTW, a clean install is usually faster anyway, since there are no dependencies of the packages that get replaced to be checked.
I have several partitions that I use as root partitions; normally I have the bootloader of my main system in the MBR of the first harddisk, /dev/hda, and on other installs (different distro, beta's or rc's) I choose to have the bootloader on a floppy (/dev/fd0). On these installs I choose to install on the MBR directly.
On all three systems I installed with the boot.iso image that I burnt to a cd-rw. You can find this image on the dvd: install/images/boot.iso. It's less than 14MB so even a mini cdrw would do, and this boot image supports lots of installation methods: FTP, HTTP, NFS, local harddrive image, local harddrive files. I had my server mount the iso image so it would be available via ftp on the local network - this should be good, I have recently upgraded my network to gigabit ethernet. I decided that my laptop would not always be connected, so there I installed from the iso image on the local harddrive (naturally after copying said image).
By doing the install from iso image(s) on your local harddrive or via ftp, the installation media location is known to the system afterwards, which means for me that I can just issue urpmi commands to install applications and will never be prompted to insert the media - with current harddisk sizes not a problem. One thing I ran into: if you have the iso image on your /home partition, during installation your 'old' usernames will not be found (in the 'create user' steps), and if you opt to create the same username(s) the chances are they will not have the same UID and GID - this can lead to some problems (that can be fixed, but they will keep the novice puzzled)... Naturally I filed a bugreport for that, so please vote for that bug. (This I ran into with Mdv 2005LE, and unfortunately I found this situation has not changed - on the laptop I installed from the iso on the /home partition, and sure enough I quickly found myself on the console as root using the command id and fixing /etc/passwd and /etc/group - since you can't log on if 'your' home dir is not writable to you...)
Another feature is that the installer actually offers to copy the installation media to the harddrive - this has the same effect as the iso installation, one will not have to scramble for any discs later on.
A last remark: it will pay off later if you create an extra partition that can serve as root partition for subsequent linux installations, for instance for beta/rc testing.
It seems I cannot stress this enough; read the forums, there are still so many posts of people who go like: "I wish I hadn't given up my nice installation of Distro X to try out Distro Y which I now find is totally disappointing to me.." but usually with stronger wordings.
The installation itself
Just put the dvd or the first cd in the tray and reboot the pc; then type enter when you get to the question if you want to install, upgrade or other.
I will now just give some tips and explanations on what and how I do things, along with the screenshots I made during the install on desktop system neuchatel and my laptop (just hit
F2 to make a screenshot, you can find them later in
/root/DrakX-screenshots/). Note that I have chosen to resize the screenshots, the normal resolution is 800x600 (SVGA). You can click each image to get the normal size screenshot.
The following parts are in the installation; I've intermittently put my comments, whereever I have tips to spare.
Choosing Your Language
|As you can tell when browsing this list, Linux offers an astonishing choice of languages (any language that anyone has bothered to do the translation for, as a matter of fact). I checked the secondary languages of my choice and moved on.|
License Terms of the Distribution
|License agreement - nothing objectionable here, no EULA's that try to take your rights, quite the contrary. This is the only License you'll see and/or have to agree to.|
Clicking the release notes button gets you ... the release notes. |
Hard disk partioning
Select whether you want to use existing partitions, erase the entire disk, reduce the size of your windows partition to make place for your Linux system or do your own custom setup. For comments on disk partitioning, read my Mandrake 9.1 installation page. For more screenshots from the Mandrake Diskdrake program, read the 9.2 installation page. |
As always, I really recommend to create a spare partition that can later be used as root partition to an alternative system. With harddrives of 120GB and more being todays standard, some extra 10GB that lies unused 'just for when you want to use it' is not an issue, whereas throwing out your working system for some new hyped system that happens to be 'not all that' in your case is a real shame.
Formatting of partitions
|The installer checks which programs can actually be installed. The group selection allows for quick installation of the most common applications per subsection.|
|This is my usual selection, except that I used to include LSB - which I don't see the point of, I only install Mdv packages anyway.|
|I had opted for the individual package selection. Note that in 'flat list view' (click the circular arrow-icon), you can just start typing away and the built-in search will jump to the package name you're typing.|
Server packages security issue
Setting the administrator (root) password
|Choose a password that you can remember, but bear in mind: anyone with physical access to your machine can easily change it (not necessarily find out what your password is, but set a new one. See the howto page on how to do that).|
Create user accounts for your system
Summary and configuration
|This is the summary screen; you can (re)configure plenty of hardware here, from your mouse, keyboard, audio, graphics card to your printer(s) and internet/ethernet connection.|
|Scrolling down shows some more things to configure...|
Summary -- Network
|Choose which connection to configure. In my case, it's my LAN connection. Naturally this was all set up, I was doing a network installation.|
|Protocol: DHCP or manual IP configuration. (BTW that bug that claimed you had previously configured the network device where you clearly hadn't is finally fixed.)|
|I prefer to have fixed IP addresses on my home lan - especially when some cable is unplugged or the switch is powered down, it avoids long waits at boot time.|
|Here the DNS and gateway information can be fed to the system.|
|In case you want to use Zeroconf, you can put the hostname here.|
|And as a last option, you can choose to allow users to start the network connection. I'm not sure what this is good for, but this is Linux and you have a choice!|
Summary -- Printer setup
|Here the printer detection settings can be configured. I opted to have 'Auto-detect' on for printers directly connected to the local network.|
|The autodetection actually found my network printer - this is the first time ever! Now, the installer detected the printer IP address, port, name and number...|
|... but then failed to propose the correct model, so I opted to select it by hand ...|
|... picked the correct model description ...|
|... and had the system print a test page, which came out fine. After this, the printer showed up nicely on the overview|
|The printer showed up nicely on the overview.|
Summary -- Graphical interface
|There was nothing to set up for the NVidia graphics card since the installed automatically used the closed source NVidia driver that is included in the Powerpack, and the monitor was also properly detected.|
End of installation
|Done! It took just about an hour, including my package selection by hand,... not bad for a full system install.|
The installation went extremely smooth and relatively fast, on both desktops and on my laptop. Actually I'd almost say: uneventful. Naturally, the graphics drivers were included this time, since I used the powerpack and both desktops have an Nvidia card. Compared to earlier Mandrake/Mandriva releases, I'd say this installer is really nicely polished and good looking. Nicely uneventful, smooth and problemfree on my hardware and good looking too, it almost sounds like the old Mandrake is really gone. I don't know if this is much to do with the recent mergers/acquisitions of Conectiva and Lycoris, but I'd like to say: Welcome to the new Mandriva! Make yourself at home on my systems!
Discussion and feedback
If you want to give me feedback you can get to me via my contact info (link at the top) or in this topic: http://mandrivausers.org/index.php?showtopic=28731. I'm tracking that topic, so as soon as you add a message I will be notified and read up on your comments. That forum is also great for help in case of problems.
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