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View Full Version : how the heck do I get linux on this thing?



slade17
29th August 2007, 03:01 AM
I just got my new laptop, a Lenovo T61p, which I had thought would work well with linux. it appears that I was wrong.

I first tried installing fedora. I get the error "Warning: cannot find root file system!" and it drops me into a shell, telling me to create a symlink /dev/root. I'm not really sure what i'm supposed to link to what.

after that I tried installing debian etch netinst, downloaded minutes ago, and that didn't work. it couldn't configure the DHCP network, even though I had an ethernet cable attached to the port. it shows two devices, a firewire and ethernet, and neither works (although it of course should be the ethernet connection)

I then tried ubuntu 7.04, and I get:


BusyBox v1.1.3 (Debian 1:1.1.3-3ubuntu3) Built-in shell (ash)
Enter "help" for a list of built-in commands.

/bin/sh: can't access tty; job control turned off
(initramfs)

even gparted wouldn't boot into a GUI, only knoppix would (after the screen flickered for a few moments)

this is my first laptop, so I really don't know whats going on here. I'd prefer to install fedora or debian, if possible. should I just download the full install discs, hope that install works, and then try fixing everything after the install? or is there something I'm missing here? (also, how many of the debian CDs do I actually need? there are so many of them...)

Iron_Mike
29th August 2007, 04:15 AM
Have you tried either the Fedora 7 gnome or kde live CD's????

slade17
29th August 2007, 04:22 AM
Have you tried either the Fedora 7 gnome or kde live CD's????
yes, it was the fedora 7 gnome liveCD that gave me the above error.

John the train
29th August 2007, 08:12 AM
slade17; I had the same error message trying to run the F7 live CD's on my ( now deceased ) desktop. I was wondering if that was an early sign of it's failure, but as your laptop is new... The strange thing is, I'd had FC4 to 6 running on the same desktop with no problems, my first suspicion - before the desktop handed in it's dinner pail - was some change in Anaconda which was conflicting with my hardware. BTW, Bob reported that the KDE live CD seems a lot better behaved, certainly I could get it to boot, though not install, on my Dell laptop ( 192MB RAM, so probably couldn't run and install at the same time ), and Momonga ( F7 derivative ) installed, using Anaconda, on the lappie, so F7 seems to get along with Intel chipsets. Hope this gives you some ideas as to where your problem might lie.

ajoian
29th August 2007, 03:27 PM
I recommend to download the Fedora 7 DVD, the Live Cds are only available to make an opinion on the distribution, I personally installed Fedora 7 on my HP nx7400 laptop and it works perfectly i've changed the BIOS setting regarding the SATA behavior and I compiled the IPW3945 wireless driver, i've installed powertop to maximize the performance of my batteries and now i have an uptime of 3 hours instead of 2 on Windows Xp or Ubuntu by closing power consuming processes and with the help of the smart F7 kernel.

rjstaaf
29th August 2007, 03:36 PM
yes, it was the fedora 7 gnome liveCD that gave me the above error.

Before we start jumping to conclusions here about the hardware, I would try and verify the ISO used to burn the CD and the CD itself are good. Did you verify the SHA1SUM of the ISO after you downloaded it? Have you tried the LiveCD in another machine to see if you get similar problems?

rjstaaf
29th August 2007, 03:39 PM
I recommend to download the Fedora 7 DVD, the Live Cds are only available to make an opinion on the distribution, I personally installed Fedora 7 on my HP nx7400 laptop and it works perfectly i've changed the BIOS setting regarding the SATA behavior and I compiled the IPW3945 wireless driver, i've installed powertop to maximize the performance of my batteries and now i have an uptime of 3 hours instead of 2 on Windows Xp or Ubuntu by closing power consuming processes and with the help of the smart F7 kernel.

The concept of a LiveCD is partly to help people who are not ready to commit to installing get a taste of Linux BUT there is absolutely no reason I can think of to discourage someone from installing from one. You can and many people do install Fedora from the LiveCD...

slade17
29th August 2007, 06:19 PM
I'll download the DVD and give it a try. I know that the liveCD works, because the computer I typed my original post was a desktop running F7 installed from that liveCD. I can try burning it again, but it wasn't scratched. I've never had a problem booting or installing linux on my desktop, or any other desktop, so 4 failures in a row make me suspicious of the hardware. I'll give sabayon a try while I download fedora, I just have to burn the DVD. maybe I'll give a few other distros a try too.

I've been planning to use powertop, but i need to get fedora installed first... and why did you need to compile the IPW3945 driver? I thought theyre available through yum in F7. IPW4965 isn't supported yet though, or at least it wasn't last i checked.

ajoian
29th August 2007, 06:29 PM
I've recompiled to add some power/batteries related patches :)

gala_dragos
29th August 2007, 06:40 PM
The concept of a LiveCD is partly to help people who are not ready to commit to installing get a taste of Linux BUT there is absolutely no reason I can think of to discourage someone from installing from one. You can and many people do install Fedora from the LiveCD...

A live CD contains VERY FEW packages and very few diagnostic tools in case of booting issues. It happen to me on a few occasions/distributions where the main install CD worked and the live CD sucked. Recommended way to install an OS is to use the main install CD.

JN4OldSchool
29th August 2007, 06:58 PM
Who's recommendation? Yours? :)

slade17
29th August 2007, 07:05 PM
I've recompiled to add some power/batteries related patches :)
watch out, you're on track to leave fedora for gentoo :p

rjstaaf
29th August 2007, 07:16 PM
A live CD contains VERY FEW packages and very few diagnostic tools in case of booting issues. It happen to me on a few occasions/distributions where the main install CD worked and the live CD sucked. Recommended way to install an OS is to use the main install CD.

Recommended by who??? Keep in mind that there is no such thing as a "main install CD". If you are installing by CD the only options from the official Fedora mirrors are the LiveCD or the Network Install CD. Even though this is 2007 not everyone has a DVD drive especially those who are trying to recycle older hardware for use with Linux.

JN4OldSchool
29th August 2007, 07:27 PM
Well, not only that, but the fact that the live CDs DO only contain very few packages is, in my eyes, a big plus. Especially after the distro has been out several months. For starters, why download 3GB on my sucky connection when I only need a few more packages then the 700MB live CD contains? Then, I would rather install just the base anyway and install all the apps using Yum. If you think the live CDs suck then thats cool. You dont have to use them. I do not think Fedora will nix the big DVD iso. But I sure welcome these live CDs. They fit the need I have.

gala_dragos
29th August 2007, 07:29 PM
Hey, you can always use FC6 or spin your own CD's from the repository. If my memory servers me correctly there was a CD version to Fedora 7 RC1 which I see it has been dropped now, sorry.

John the train
29th August 2007, 08:25 PM
Recommended by who??? Keep in mind that there is no such thing as a "main install CD". If you are installing by CD the only options from the official Fedora mirrors are the LiveCD or the Network Install CD. Even though this is 2007 not everyone has a DVD drive especially those who are trying to recycle older hardware for use with Linux.

Quite a few distros., particularly of the ' turn-key ' install and run variety are only available as live CD's, and I agree with the point about not everyone having a DVD drive. I swapped in a DVD burner in my now defunct desktop, ( the burner will be re-cycled! ) mainly to be able to back up my growing photo library onto one disc. If I'd had to pay a computer shop to do it I might have thought twice about it, and the laptop I'm posting this from only has a CD drive, I'm not even sure if Dell produced a DVD drive for this model.

slade17
29th August 2007, 11:20 PM
okay, I just burnt the fedora install DVD, and when I boot from it and go to install, select my language and location, it asks what install media I'm using. I click on local CD-ROM, and it says:


unable to find any devices of the type
needed for this installation type,
would you like to manually select your
driver or use a driver disk?

I don't exactly know what's going on here, considering it can obviously read the cd rom drive if it was able to get this far... and I have no idea what driver to select from the list. I can't find it online either, so I guess i'll have to wait on hold with tech support again...

slade17
29th August 2007, 11:49 PM
is there any way to find out what driver knoppix loads, so that I can copy/specify those with another linux distro? because knoppix is the only thing i've been able to boot, nothing will even install...

Seve
30th August 2007, 12:22 AM
Hello:
I just did a quick search in bugzilla for the T61 and it turned up this ?
https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=254215
It may or may not help.

There may be more bugs reported if you expand the search a little.

Seve

slade17
30th August 2007, 01:34 AM
I just burnt and installed the newest sabayon, and I have to say, I'm impressed. I never got around to using it because i don't really like the GUI, and portage can be a pain, but this is a really nice distro. it installed smoothly and detected my videocard and wireless card correctly. for some reason, though, i can't seem to connect to my wireless network. it has no problem tapping into the neighbor's though <.< also, it appears to have not installed beryl, i'm wondering if I missed that option somewhere. *sigh* time to figure out how to deal with portage.

now, i just have to get fedora going :cool:

slade17
30th August 2007, 03:17 AM
Hello:
I just did a quick search in bugzilla for the T61 and it turned up this ?
https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=254215
It may or may not help.

There may be more bugs reported if you expand the search a little.

Seve
hmm, thanks :cool: i'll try that. congrats on becoming a community manager, you help out a lot around here

bob_c_b
30th August 2007, 03:50 AM
Hello:
I just did a quick search in bugzilla for the T61 and it turned up this ?
https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=254215
It may or may not help.

There may be more bugs reported if you expand the search a little.

Seve

That is the issue, same thing happened when I tried to install Fedora 7 on my Thinkpad T60 at work. Go into BIOS and turn the SATA mode from AHCI to the SATA/Emulate IDE (work laptop downstairs so I don't recall exact wording). I've got Fedora 7 w/KDE on my work machine, runs like a champ.

dustymnt
30th August 2007, 05:59 PM
If you have a USB HDD copy the DVD iso to it, get the F7 rescue CD iso, and burn it to CD-R. Boot the Rescue CD, and install from the attached USB drive. That was the only way I was able to install Fedora 7 on 3 systems, including an old Dell Latitude (266MHz, 128MB).
Fedora 7 was the most frustrating Linux distro I have ever encountered (Red Hat 4 was my first Linux distro), and it was all due to the DVD I burned (it passed all tests).

gala_dragos
31st August 2007, 06:56 PM
I think I've found a CD version of Fedora 7. take a look here: http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Fedora7/FAQ?#CD_Install_Images . Hope it helps you guys!

slade17
31st August 2007, 09:42 PM
okay, I got some things set up and I might as well post back. plus, I have a few questions.

after changing the SATA mode from AHCI to compatability, fedora installed, but I still couldn't get into a GUI. I did a yum update, then installed kmod-nvidia, and everything works fine - I guess my videocard was too new for the nv driver. but, because of that, it didn't go through the whole first boot configuration, so I had to manually add a user and set the time; I'm not sure if there's anything else.

now, I have a few questions:

1) i tried installing beryl and it tried to pull in beryl-kde and its dependencies. I don't use KDE, though, and probably never will. is there some strange reason that this is actually necessary, or is yum just trying to be "safe" by installing this? should I just use the no dependencies option and install the other beryl dependencies manually?

2) on fedora, I can plug in my USB mouse after booting up and it works fine. on sabayon, it doesn't respond. how do i configure sabayon to recognize the mouse?

slade17
31st August 2007, 10:14 PM
one more question: I have an IPW3945 wireless card, the drivers for which are installed. I opened the network configuration tool and and it lists the same device twice, wlan0 and wlan0.bak, and then there's eth0. all three are active. but, I can't get a wireless connection or pick which network to connect to. the gnome applet doesn't show up either. how do i fix this?

right now, between sabayon and fedora, I have one full linux system :p

*edit* hmm, nevermind... I just unplugged my mouse, plugged it back in, and it doesnt work.

also, every time I boot I get the message that starting hidd fails. it looks like this is for bluetooth, but the bluetooth gnome applet still shows up (not that I have anything to test it with though) I'd like to fix this eventually, since i'll be getting a bluetooth phone at some point, but it isn't pertinent.

I thought this problem was fixed, but apparently not. whenever I boot fedora, it drops me into a shell. I have to log in as root and start gdm to be able to get into gnome. how do i get it to boot to the login screen?