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Problems installing Linux

By nean_72 ·
I am trying to install to install Linux on an old HP with a 466Mhz Celery and 64 Mb of memory. I tried the commerical version of LinSpire with no success / it didn't have all the OS's requirements and would hang during install. I have also tried downloadable versions of Debian and Fedora Core without much success. I normally download the OS onto my laptop and burn a CD-RW and try to install that on my desktop. The problem I am running into is when I put the disk in and restart the machine it does not seem to pick the disk as a system disk. I have checked my BIOS and made sure that the boot order boots from the CD-ROM first. I would really like to use the Debian distro if possible. I welcome any advice anyone might have.

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by Jaqui In reply to Problems installing Linux

1) when burning the iso images you are not picking it as a file are you? an iso is an image of a filesystem. [ most common iissue with cd not being recognised. ]

2) you are starting with cd1 of the set? [ it's the only bootable cdrom ]

3) 32mb is minimum for linux, 64 recommended, if running the xserver and a gui environment 128 mb or better is recommended.
[ it will work, slowly, with 64 mb ]

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Installing linux

by SWLChris In reply to Problems installing Linux

The fact you have an older machine would lead me to suggest two things. Look for an older version of RedHat such 7.1 or 7.2 which is debian based I believe. Or try a newer distro such as Vector Linux which is built with your type of machine in mind. No heavy footprint on the hard drive and minimal hardware requirements.
Fedora Core any version is overkill on a machine with only 64 megs of ram, it may run but you will be waiting awhile and the distro takes up a lot of hard drive.
Seond, burn the file as an iso image or it won't boot at all and you just have a coaster for a cdrom unless it was done on a rewritable.

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live distro

by luther_world In reply to Installing linux

An easy way to find if linux will run on your machine is to obtain a live distro (it runs totally from your cd rom. Kanotix is based on knoppix or debian I believe. Mandriva also has a live distro. DSL (Damn Small Linux) is another available. Dittos on making sure you are burning as an ISO.

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Knoppix requirements

by SWLChris In reply to live distro

Found this on my cdrom of Knoppix
What are the minimum system requirements?

Intel-compatible CPU (i486 or later),
32 MB of RAM for text mode, at least 96 MB for graphics mode with KDE (at least 128 MB of RAM is recommended to use the various office products),
bootable CD-ROM drive, or a boot floppy and standard CD-ROM (IDE/ATAPI or SCSI),
standard SVGA-compatible graphics card,
serial or PS/2 standard mouse or IMPS/2-compatible USB-mouse.

If he has only 64 megs even Knoppix is going to have a hard time in graphical mode.

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If not knoppix then

by luther_world In reply to Knoppix requirements

try DSL ( It claims to be able to run on a 486DX with only 16mb of ram. The entire distro can fit inside a 50MB live CD. I have booted it on a 200 pentium I with 64 mb.

I looked up kanotix and your right, it recommends 128mb ram or more.

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most likely the disk

by Stephy In reply to If not knoppix then

I would go with Jaqui's first thoughts.
Even if it was low on ram I think it would at least load up the start screen and most likely die off as it begins to install.
If you are using nero, just select "burn as an image" and make sure iso is in the dropdown.
Other than that check the CD Rom is ok.

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