How to Install Linux So That it Boots

How to Install Linux So That it Boots

Post by Al Christi » Wed, 18 Feb 2004 15:29:44


I've been trying (with no success) for about 8 days now to install linux
so that it will boot from a new hard drive. Here's what I've got:

1. A new Athlon XP-2500 chip with 512 MB of RAM.

2. A new motherboard sold by Fry's on sale a couple weeks ago to work
with that CPU.

3. A new Western Digital 80 GB hard drive.

For some reason, this combination goes very slowly when attempting to
boot. It takes several minutes for it to tell me that it's not able to
find a boot disk. It will boot linux from a CD or bootable floppy, but
the hard disk is never bootable. Exactly once, I got Red Hat to start
to boot, so that a message came on the screen acknowledging that linux
was being booted, but this crashed within a minute or so thereafter.
Every other time I get that message about inserting a boot disk and
pressing a key.

Except that the hard drive won't boot and sometimes gets munged up so
that the OS doesn't see it at all, the drive shows no signs of being
sick. Linux installs fine, but just won't boot.

Among the things that I've tried:

0. A different motherboard (older) that may have originally formatted
the drive as LBA. The BIOS setup of the new motherboard doesn't give
any options that look to be related to LBA at all.

1. Red Hat, Mandrake, Slackware (with 2.4.22 kernel), MEPIS, ...

2. Using DOS fdisk to partition the drive before installing linux.

3. Using KILLDISK to zero out everything on the drive before installing
linux.

4. Marking the hda1 partition active using DOS fdisk.

5. Marking the hda1 partition bootable with cfdisk.

6. Marking the hda1 partition bootable with linux fdisk.

6. Installing the bootloader in the MBR.

7. Installing the bootloader at the start of the hda1 partiotion.

8. Letting the linux installers have the whole disk to do what they
wanted to, accepting all the defaults.

9. Formatting the drive with Windows NT of Windows 2000 setup disks
befor trying to install linux.

10. Booting with nodma or allowcddma options.

11. Disabling and enabling DMA in the bios.

Is there a step-by-step or checklist of what I should be sure to do to
make this work? Anything that I haven't listed that could be causing
this?

TIA,


Al
 
 
 

How to Install Linux So That it Boots

Post by Douglas Ma » Thu, 19 Feb 2004 00:42:52

n Mon, 16 Feb 2004 22:29:44 -0800, Al Christians wrote:

Post the make and model number of your motherboard, and maybe someone can
help you with the exact settings. I'm guessing its a fairly recent board
and there aren't BIOS issues about recognizing the drive. I don't have
experience working with Athlon boards, but someone here probably does.
Also, your apparent success at running setup indicates the board and drive
are working correctly.

The first step when a system won't boot is trying to boot with a floppy
disk. The setup programs recommend that you make the floppy as a
fallback startup. Have you tried booting with the floppy?

BTW, a lot of the things you tried could have undone your previous steps
(i.e. damaged your setup.)

Take some time to understand what you are doing. Also, take a step back
for a minute. I know sometimes things get frustrating and things
that should work, just won't work for whatever reason. Ask for help along
the way. For instance, at least step 2 and step 9 (above) could have
been nixed from at the outset.

Decide which distribution you are going to install, then stick with it
until you can get it running.

--
Gentlemen...You can't fight in here. This is the war room.
http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0057012/quotes

 
 
 

How to Install Linux So That it Boots

Post by rgr » Thu, 19 Feb 2004 01:32:16

>>>>> "Al" == Al Christians < XXXX@XXXXX.COM > writes:
Al>
Al> I've been trying (with no success) for about 8 days now to install
Al> linux so that it will boot from a new hard drive. Here's what
Al> I've got:
Al>
Al>
Al> 1. A new Athlon XP-2500 chip with 512 MB of RAM.
Al>
Al> 2. A new motherboard sold by Fry's on sale a couple weeks ago to
Al> work with that CPU.
Al>
Al>
Al> 3. A new Western Digital 80 GB hard drive.
Al>
Al> For some reason, this combination goes very slowly when attempting
Al> to boot. It takes several minutes for it to tell me that it's not
Al> able to find a boot disk. It will boot linux from a CD or
Al> bootable floppy, but

I recently purchased a similar combination deal from Fry's, and I
experienced exactly the same symptoms.

The problem turned out to the the Western Digital drive was the only
drive on the IDE cable, and in that case, you must not set the drive
to master, but instead remove the jumper altogether. If your Western
Digital is the only thing on the cable, check that, and you might
double check the cables and jumper in any case.

--Rob
 
 
 

How to Install Linux So That it Boots

Post by Al Christi » Thu, 19 Feb 2004 23:30:21


That worked, thanks very much. I've been able to get Redhat in and
running.

Unfortunately, that leads me to another question.

Unfortunately, Redhat does not auto-detect the network connection, I
think I've got to tell it what kind of an adapter is in there before the
machine will see the internet. A friend put the hardware together for
me, and I don't know what kind of network card is in there. It looks to
me like the network connection may be on the motherboard, for which my
dear wife has thrown out the box and manual.

Any ideas what kind of adapter to use to set up my ethernet?


Al
 
 
 

How to Install Linux So That it Boots

Post by Lenar » Thu, 19 Feb 2004 23:44:25


From the console or xterm session type 'lspci -v' without the quotes to
find out. Provide the portion of the output for the network interface,
sample below;

02:05.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd.
RTL-8139/8139C/8139C+ (rev 10)
Subsystem: Unknown device 17c0:1053
Flags: bus master, medium devsel, latency 32, IRQ 19 I/O ports at
3000 [size=256]
Memory at d0100000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=256] Expansion
ROM at <unassigned> [disabled] [size=64K] Capabilities: <available
only to root>

Yours may be different, this is only an example.


--
Posted under the XFree86 v.1.0 license
Copyright remains with the author
 
 
 

How to Install Linux So That it Boots

Post by Johan Lind » Thu, 19 Feb 2004 23:48:50

So anyway, it was like, 15:30 CET Feb 18 2004, you know? Oh, and, yeah,
Al Christians was all like, "Dude,


Given the info you've provided, absolutely none what so ever. You
might gain some clues from running 'lcpci' at a command prompt tho.

--
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15:47:48 up 24 days, 23:24, 8 users, load average: 4.42, 4.60, 4.34
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How to Install Linux So That it Boots

Post by Andreas Tr » Fri, 20 Feb 2004 00:09:40


Have you checked your BIOS and told it to boot off the hard disk?

Andreas
 
 
 

How to Install Linux So That it Boots

Post by Johan Lind » Fri, 20 Feb 2004 00:16:40

So anyway, it was like, 15:48 CET Feb 18 2004, you know? Oh, and, yeah,
I was all like, "Whoa, dude,


Don't listen to me, pick someone who can spell instead.

(That's 'lspci'.)

--
Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana. Perth ---> *
16:15:24 up 24 days, 23:52, 7 users, load average: 3.33, 3.38, 3.54
$ cat /dev/bollocks "echo y | format c:" Registered Linux user #261729
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