Dreaded HD install
I'm new to linux and am facing the following issue (yes, I did do a search first):
Toshiba Portege 3015 (266 Mhz, 64mb Ram, 4.3 GB) with external PCMCIA CD , floppy drive. No boot-from-CD option...Toshiba provides a floppy to boot the Install CD.
Problem: getting Linux installed. I'm obviously looking at small distributions....considering slackware, DSL, and VL.
The question: is there any lightweight distribution that makes an install from the harddrive easy? I partitioned the HD and extracted VL (one of the ones I have tried) to the FAT32 partition...when I start the install, it stops at "kernel panic -- unable to mount root fs".
PS: I know this is not enough to go on in terms of troubleshooting..I'm just asking if anybody has done a harddrive install and can recommend a "path"
I have a similar laptop, but with NO CDrom. I've managed to get both Slackware and Fedora Core 5 installed without problem.
I used a desktop PC and a 2.5"<-> 3.5" IDE adaptor (should cost less than £5/$5 on ebay or a local computer shop). Installed the OS, and reinstalled the HDD back in the laptop. Took ages to boot whilst finding all the new hardware, and I needed to configure the X display settings again (it came up automatically on FC5, and IIRC on Slackware too). The PCMCIA CD-ROM should be detected once the OS has loaded, otherwise you should be able to use a USB memory stick if you need to transfer other drivers.
Just noticed it's a 266Mhz, so may not have a USB port. Most hardware drivers will fit on a floppy without too many problems.
Thanks for the link,beagle2...
After some playing around with it (and realizing that I had to change the pcmcia controller mode in the bios), I was able to get it to boot...but: even though I changed the screen resolution during boot (it's an option at boot time), the graphics card is obviously not recognized. I get an extremely fuzzy, mostly cyan screen where it's pretty much impossible to read anything. I guessed my way to install to the HD (had a partition set up before)...and installed a boot loader when prompted because it asked if Windows was installed (on what, I couldn't make out..assuming hda1).
But after the reboot, it just goes into windows...no boot loader. Maybe I should ask over at the DSL forum....I know it's possible to install on a Portege -- I found this link:
Anybody have experience getting VL to run from a PCMCIA CD rom?
I haven't done it in a while, but it should be possible
to boot from a floppy to install from cdrom, in fact it used
to be a common method of installation. Look in your favirite
linux install cd for a directory with floppy image files
and documentation on this method.
If I can get that to work for VL, cool...DSL is out unless I can figure out a way to get the graphics driver changed....
I'll see if I can find something...