[clue] Reinstallation ramblings

Collins Richey crichey at gmail.com
Sun Jun 30 08:41:49 MDT 2013

I finally got a round tuit with respect to repairing my main pc (down since
a power outage 6 months ago fried the onboard nic). Since I still have a
working netbook, I never got highly motivated. After much Linux
installation, repair, reworking servers, cabling, etc. at $DAYJOB and
watching American Idol or the Voice with my wife, I, too, was fried. I
finally got a nic card and started the process of rebuilding this past week.

Note the PC in question is a home-build with Gigabyte 880GA-UD3H MB and AMD
PH II X6, 8G memory, and a pair of 1TB drives mirrored using the onboard
RAID controller.

Plans were/are to setup a virtual environment. My prefrence would be simply
to run ESXI on the box, but VMware doesn't include drivers for the usual
commodity nics used in PCs, so my next plan was to put up a basic Debian
system with KVM, etc. That didn't happen due to various glitches along the

1. I didn't seem to be able to burn a cd/dvd for Debian that would boot on
the bos, so I got a larger USB key for installation use.

2. After several attempts over several days, I was unable to get a Testing
DVD downloaded that had the correct md5sum (different each time!!!). I
haven't encountered that problem ever with any distro.

3. Finally I wa able to download the Testing Livecd (md5sum checked) that
has dual cd/key support, dd it to a key. and start the installation
process. Surprise, surprise! Ay caramba, the standard Debian installer is
not able to see my mirrored drive!!! It only sees the individual drives
that make up the mirror!!! Scrap that attempt.

4. From a previous attempt, I knew that my favorite PCLinuxOS would not
work. The PCLOS Livecd boots, runs, and installs to the mirrored drive with
no apparent problems, but the installed system will not boot. It appears
that there is something missing in the initrd/grub1 setup.

5. So, I'm back to using Linuxmint (15). Downloaded and burned the DVD - no
problems. The installer allowed me to repartition the mirrored drive with
(seemingly!!!) no problems., and the install completed in short order.

6. Bootup ok. I had left extra free space on the drive to be partitioned
later, but that didn't work. The #@$! installer created an extended
partition using only the space I had allocated for swap and /opt and no way
to use the extra 800+G of unused space on the drive. Fortunately I was able
to swapoff . remove those 2 partitions and the extended partition, recreate
the extended partition (now full size), swap, and /opt, reboot, and remake
the ext4fs on /opt.

After that, it was a piece of cake to get the KVM components installed, but
working with that will be a later project.


Collins Richey
     If you fill your heart with regrets of yesterday and the worries
     of tomorrow, you have no today to be thankful for.
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