Monday 12 March 2007

Less connectivity please!

Today was mostly spent wondering why France couldn't repeat their Ireland heroics to snatch victory against England, and getting Linux installed on A's laptop, in place of the virus/malware/spyware/bloatware infested Windows.

I was quite lucky to manage to find Grub4DOS, and associated tools. The laptop's busted CD/DVD drive (it can only read pressed CDs, and not even that fast) didn't make things any easier, and thank fsck I have a floppy drive in my desktop machine. The first install, bootstrapped from WinXP using the NT version failed halfway through with a network error, leaving me with a bricked laptop. The second try was more successful after I managed to get FreeDOS installed on the hard disk, got all the Fedora images over via floppy, and finished the install over the network.

I also saw for the first time the ACPI error message telling me that the BIOS cutoff date was past (the BIOS claims to be from 1997, even though the machine is 5 years old). I still managed to get quite an impression after showing suspend-to-disk, and boot/login of under 5 minutes (Windows is so shit).

Some old film news: Hot Fuzz, Bienvenue chez les Rozes, The Italian Job


stuaxo said...

Be careful with grub4dos, don't use normal grub with it, I buggered mine that way - they work slightly differently... I only managed to fix mine by getting super-grub-disk in the end

Anonymous said...

How you copied Fedora Images using floppy ?

Anonymous said...

Kushal: you'd use split to generate floppy-sized partitions of your original image, and then use dd to write them to the floppy.

I used to have to do this my first year at U of York, before they wired the dorms -- I only had a desktop, and when I want to grab Red Hat RPMs I'd create a tarball, split it, and pray that none of the floppies are bad (somehow late-90s floppies are less reliable than earlier ones!)

Bastien Nocera said...

Stuart, well, grub4dos is only to get things kickstarted. I don't think I'm that interested in running a DOS/Linux dual-boot, although I did 10 years ago ;)