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[linrad] Re: Leifs Debian install problems, another guess..

> *****
> 2.5. Memory and Disk Space Requirements
> You must have at least 32MB of memory and 110MB of hard disk space. For
> a minimal console-based system (all standard packages), 250MB is
> required. If you want to install a reasonable amount of software,
> including the X Window System, and some development programs and
> libraries, you'll need at least 400MB. For a more or less complete
> desktop system, you'll need a few gigabytes.
> Prev
> ********
OK. This is the problem.

> If you can not install the nic-extra (NetworkInterfaceCard-extra
> drivers, for old hardware) you can not install your network card.
> I have the same mininst.iso than yours and the 3c509.ko drivers
> are there!!!
I understand. I guess I could extract the 3c509 drivers on a bigger
machine and place them on a floppy, but that really goes beyond
what I was trying to achieve.

> > Debian 3.0r4 installs easily however.....
> Well, that old woody installer requierd 14 MB only, and of course it
> works on your hardware.

> > I will just skip all of this for now. It really takes a lot of time
> > and I think I can use my time better.
> >
> > I had no idea that nic stands for Network Interface Cards (????)
> yes, it is a common acronymus for such computer stuff. The first time I
> heard it I was also confused, until I discovered its meaning. ;-)
> > and this information is very hard to find. It is just impossible
> > to learn all the acronyms and guessing does not help much:-(
> >
> > Fedora, RedHat, Mandrake and Suse are much easier to install
> than Debian.
> > The reason to include Debian would be to have a procedure that would
> > fit virtually all computers and that would allow a recent kernel.
> > I have failed on this and I suggest Roger uploads the Debian
> instructions
> > somewhere and maybe you all can contribute by making the various hints
> > available. I am reluctant to upload material that may cause confusion.
> > I get mails like the following one:
> Leif, do not blame Debian because you can not install it on your
> hardware. You are trying to install a modern version of Linux on a very
> old hardware and the problem is not the hardware, but the memory size.
Well, I have a problem and I thought Debian was the solution to it....

> This summer I was playing on a 8MB 486 computer that could not run the
> woody intaller because of low memory. The solution was installing an old
> version of debian from a set of floppies (yes, from floppies) and
> upgrade to woody.
Yes. Ever since I spent about a week failing to get any version of Linux
running on an old 486 I have known you are an expert and to my knowledge
nobody else has been sucessful on the 486:-)

> Debian is perhaps the only distro that can be used in old computers now.
> Other distros claim much more big memory sizes. I give you some
> solutions if you want to try in the future.
Yes. I use RedHat6.1 which runs fine on the old machine. Woody is perhaps
a little more difficult to install for a newcomer but also RedHat 6.1
requires some Linux knowledge.

> -Put some more memory just to install. Then remove it for normal use.
> or
> -Install Debian 3.r4. Install only the base system. Then, update the
> /etc/apt/sources.list file to point the sarge files on debian servers
> and do "apt-get update;apt-get dist-upgrade", cross your fingers and
> wait. Then change to new kernel....etc (this is not complicated, but
> sure you will have to tweak some things to make modules work. I recomend
> the first solution.
I do not need to replace RedHat on the old computer, I am just using it
now and then to verify that Linrad runs properly on it. As it turns out,
the multithreaded version needs to use swap space so I can not use mlockall
to get info whether some of the important work space gets swapped so at
the moment I have no way to tell the user what the problem is if he
selects too demanding parameters.

> >>That all sounds good, but I gave up with LINRAD because to
> >>many components have to play together. If LINRAD would come
> >>up in ONE package that everyone could install, who is not
> >>someone with squared eyes, I would try it againe.
> >>Don`t take it personaly. I'v seen LINRAD in Prague and it
> >>looks fine. But for people who use theyr computer like my
> >>granny her TV-set...
> That is his problem, not our problem. People is too lazy. People wants
> everything ready to fly.
Hmmm, I see this as a very important problem.

> Yesterday I was around 5 hours studying your problem!
Thanks. The answer was very simple and maybe it would be a good
idea to tell debian.or about it. The information that 24 megabytes is
enough is false!!

> > It makes me think I have already uploaded too much information
> > in a way that is confusing to the newcomer.
> Probably the newcomer will not use such old computer, and it would be
> easier. You are working with hardware that even does not boot from
> CDROM. People will frighten even with the instruction set that you
> explained to boot from the SmartBootManager floppy.
> It seems that you and me are the only madmen who use old computers ;-)
Typically the experimenter I want to reach has a reasonably modern computer
which he uses for MS Windows, E-mail, family photo album etc. This computer
is also used by family members and he is unwilling to install Linux on it.
This guy has the time needed and a radio that would surely benefit from
Linrad in CW mode and he also has an old scrap computer - but that one
is typically a 486 today - even here in Sweden. My suggestion "use your
scrap computer and put Linrad on it" does not work yet, but I think the
oldest Pentium computers will soon become the "typical old computer" and
such hardware is fully adequate and I think it would open the eyes on
many people if it were easy to install Linrad on them.

I want to make Linrad available to hams who can spend very little
money on their hobby, but who have the time to do some experimenting.
(I do remember how my own route into the hobby went....)

This is the scenario: A scrap computer is the target for a Linrad install.
The family computer which has an Ethernet connection is used to make a CD
and possibly a boot floppy. The Internet connection is borrowed from the
family computer to allow the scrap computer to install everything it needs
over the Internet. As long as Linrad is the only program that will be run
on the computer, the latest Linrad version would be the only thing needed
from the Internet, but making it possible to fetch anything that would
fit into the computer could promote Linux interest in general.

My own route is to make Linrad multi-threaded and better structured
so it will be possible to make a multi-platform package from it. I am
sure Linrad would be extremely useful on HF bands to fight man made
noise with wideband hardware. Until now I do not think anyone has tried
it and the threshold to Linux seems to be the main obstacle.....


Leif / SM5BSZ

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