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Installing Debian GNU/Linux 3.0 For Intel x86
Chapter 11 - Appendix


11.1 Further Information


11.1.1 Further Information

A general source of information on Linux is the Linux Documentation Project. There you will find the HOWTOs and pointers to other very valuable information on parts of a GNU/Linux system.


11.2 Obtaining Debian GNU/Linux


11.2.1 Official Debian GNU/Linux CD Sets

If you want to buy a CD set to install Debian GNU/Linux system from CD-ROM you should look at the CD vendors page. There you get a list of addresses which sell Debian GNU/Linux on CD-ROMs. The list is sorted by country so you shouldn't have a problem to find a vendor near you.


11.2.2 Debian Mirrors

If you live outside of the USA and you want to download Debian packages, you can also use one of many mirrors which reside outside the USA. A list of countries and mirrors can be found at the Debian FTP server website.


11.2.3 Description of Installation System Files

This section contains an annotated list of files you will find in the disks-i386 directory. Which files you need to download will depend on the installation boot option and operating system installation media you have chosen.

Most files are floppy disk images; that is, a single file which can be written to a disk to create the necessary floppy disk. These images are, obviously, dependent on the size of the target floppy. For instance, 1.44MB is the normal quantity of data which is what fits on standard 3.5 inch floppies. 1.2MB is the amount of data which normally fits on 5.25 inch floppy disks, so use this image size if you have such a floppy drive. The images for 1.44MB floppy disks can be found in the images-1.44 directory. Images for 1.2MB floppy disks can be found in the images-1.20 directory. Images for 2.88MB disks, which are generally only used for CD-ROM booting and the like, are found in the images-2.88 directory.

If you are using a web browser on a networked computer to read this document, you can probably retrieve the files by selecting their names in your web browser. Depending on your browser you may need to take special action to download directly to a file, in raw binary mode. For example, in Netscape you need to hold the shift key when clicking on the URL to retrieve the file. Files can be downloaded from the URLs in this document, which are within the www server's .../current/ directory, or you can retrieve them via ftp from ftp://ftp.debian.org/debian/dists/woody/main/disks-i386/current/. You can also use the corresponding directory on any of the Debian mirror sites.


11.2.3.1 Files for the Initial System Boot


11.2.3.1.1 Rescue floppy images:

These are the "Rescue Floppy" disk images. The rescue floppy is used for initial setup and for emergencies, such as when your system doesn't boot for some reason. Therefore it is recommended you write the disk image to the floppy even if you are not using floppies for installation.


11.2.3.1.2 Root image(s):

This file contains an image of a temporary file system that gets loaded into memory when you boot from the rescue floppy. This is used for installations from hard disk and floppies.


11.2.3.1.3 Linux boot loader for MS-DOS:

You will need this boot loader if you are installing from a MS-DOS partition or from a CD-ROM. See Booting from a DOS partition, Section 5.4.1.


11.2.3.1.4 MS-DOS Installer Batch Files:

MS-DOS batch file for starting Debian installation from MS-DOS. This batch file is used in installations from hard disk or CD-ROM. See Booting from a DOS partition, Section 5.4.1.


11.2.3.1.5 TFTP boot images

Boot images used for network booting, see Preparing Files for TFTP Net Booting, Section 4.5. Generally, they contain the Linux kernel and the root.bin root file system.


11.2.3.2 Linux Kernel Files

This is the Linux kernel image to be used for hard disk installations. You don't need it if you are installing from floppies.


11.2.3.3 Driver Files

These files contain kernel modules, or drivers, for all kinds of hardware that are not necessary for initial booting. Getting the drivers you want is a two step process: first you identify an archive of drivers you want to use, and then you select which particular drivers you want.

The driver archive floppies are not used until after the hard drive has been partitioned and the kernel has been installed. If you need a particular driver for initial booting, for your subarchitecture, or to access the hard drive, choose a kernel with the necessary driver compiled in and supply the correct boot parameter arguments. Please see Choosing the Right Installation Set, Section 4.2.2 and Boot Parameter Arguments, Section 5.1.

Remember that your driver archive must be consistent with your initial kernel choice.


11.2.3.3.1 Driver floppies images:

11.2.3.3.2 Driver floppies archive

If you are not limited to diskettes, choose one of these files.


11.2.3.4 Debian Base System Installation Files

These files are needed only for computers without a working network connection, or those with unsupported network hardware. They contain the programs needed for the most basic GNU/Linux operating system. Often the contents of these files can be obtained automatically by the installer over a working network connection.


11.2.3.4.1 Base System Images:

These are the base system floppy disk images.


11.2.3.4.2 Base System archive tarball

If you are not limited to diskettes, choose this file.


11.2.3.5 Utilities

This is a MS-DOS utility to write a floppy disk image to a floppy. You should not copy images to the floppy, but instead use this utility to ``raw write'' them.


11.3 Linux Devices

In Linux you have various special files in /dev. These files are called devices files. In the Unix world accessing hardware is different. There you have a special file which actually runs a driver which in turn accesses the hardware. The device file is an interface to the actual system component. Files under /dev also behave differently than ordinary files. Below are the most important device files listed.

     fd0	First Floppy Drive
     fd1	Second Floppy Drive
     hda	IDE Hard disk / CD-ROM on the first IDE port (Master)
     hdb	IDE Hard disk / CD-ROM on the first IDE port (Slave)
     hdc	IDE Hard disk / CD-ROM on the second IDE port (Master)
     hdd	IDE Hard disk / CD-ROM on the second IDE port (Slave)
     hda1	First partition of the first IDE hard disk
     hdd15	Fifteenth partition of the fourth IDE hard disk
     sda	SCSI Hard disk with lowest SCSI ID (e.g. 0)
     sdb	SCSI Hard disk with next higher SCSI ID (e.g. 1)
     sdc	SCSI Hard disk with next higher SCSI ID (e.g. 2)
     sda1	First partition of the first SCSI hard disk
     sdd10	Tenth partition of the fourth SCSI hard disk
     sr0	SCSI CD-ROM with the lowest SCSI ID
     sr1	SCSI CD-ROM with the next higher SCSI ID
     ttyS0	Serial port 0, COM1 under MS-DOS
     ttyS1	Serial port 1, COM2 under MS-DOS
     psaux	PS/2 mouse device
     gpmdata	Pseudo device, repeater data from GPM (mouse) daemon
     cdrom	Symbolic link to the CD-ROM drive
     mouse	Symbolic link to the mouse device file
     null	everything pointed to this device will disappear
     zero	one can endlessly read zeros out of this device

11.3.1 Setting Up Your Mouse

The mouse can be used in both the Linux console (with gpm) and the X window environment. The two uses can be made compatible if the gpm repeater is used to allow the signal to flow to the X server as shown:

     mouse => /dev/psaux  => gpm => /dev/gpmdata -> /dev/mouse => X
              /dev/ttyS0             (repeater)        (symlink)
              /dev/ttyS1

Set the repeater protocol to be raw (in /etc/gpm.conf) while setting X to the original mouse protocol in /etc/X11/XF86Config or /etc/X11/XF86Config-4.

This approach to use gpm even in X has advantages when the mouse is unplugged inadvertently. Simply restarting gpm with

     user@debian:# /etc/init.d/gpm restart

will re-connect the mouse in software without restarting X.

If gpm is disabled or not installed with some reason, make sure to set X to read directly from the mouse device such as /dev/psaux. For details, refer to the 3-Button Mouse mini-Howto at /usr/share/doc/HOWTO/en-txt/mini/3-Button-Mouse.gz, man gpm, /usr/share/doc/gpm/FAQ.gz, and README.mouse.


11.4 Disk Space Needed for Tasks

The base woody installation on the author's computer required 117MB. The installed size for all standard packages was 123MB, with a download size of 38MB; so 278MB of space was needed to install the base and all standard packages.

The following table lists sizes reported by aptitude (a very nice program, by the way) for the tasks listed in tasksel. The system for which the figures were reported already had all standard packages installed. Note that some tasks have overlapping constituents, so the total installed size for two tasks together may be less than the total obtained by adding the numbers up.

     Task                              Installed  Download   Space Needed 
                                       Size (MB)  Size (MB)  To Install (MB)
     
     desktop environment                 345        118         463
     X window system                      78         36         114
     games                                49         14          63
     Debian Jr.                          340        124         464
     dialup system                        28          8          36
     laptop system                         3          1           4
     scientific applications             110         30         140
     
     C and C++                            32         15          47
     Python                              103         30         133
     Tcl/Tk                               37         11          48
     fortran                              10          4          14
     
     file server                           1          -           1
     mail server                           4          3           7
     usenet news server                    6          2           8
     print server                         48         18          66
     conventional unix server             55         19          74
     web server                            4          1           5
     
     TeX/LaTeX environment               171         64         235
     
     simplified Chinese environment       80         29         109
     traditional Chinese environment     166         68         234
     Cyrillic environment                 29         13          42
     French environment                   60         18          78
     German environment                   31          9          40
     Japanese environment                110         53         163
     Korean environment                  178         72         250
     Polish environment                   58         27          85
     Russian environment                  12          6          18
     Spanish environment                  15          4          19

11.5 Effects of Verbose and Quiet

These are the effects of the verbose boot argument for woody:

These are the effects of the quiet boot argument for woody:


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Installing Debian GNU/Linux 3.0 For Intel x86

version 3.0.24, 18 December, 2002

Bruce Perens
Sven Rudolph
Igor Grobman
James Treacy
Adam Di Carlo