View Full Version : Numerous problems with knoppix-installer and 3.8.1

05-01-2005, 05:22 PM
My uname string:
Linux kpa01 2.6.11 #6 SMP Wed Feb 23 09:15:46 CET 2005 i686 GNU/Linux

This is the 3.8.1 distribution

I booted from the CD and ran the knoppix-installer script to install to a HD partition. I ran into numerous problems:

1) I am running a dual-boot with Windows XP and need to keep the MBR loaded with the Windows boot loader. So I loaded the Lilo loader into the ext3 partition and created a boot floppy.
Problem a: The boot floppy does not boot. I tried it on different computer, reformatted, tried new floppies, nothing. The knoppix-installer script is not creating a valid boot floppy.
Problem b: It looks like the ext3 partition is not being correctly written with the LILO boot loader. I tried the bootsector in the Windows boot.ini file (which has worked for me before) and that doesn't work either.
I was finally able to create a grub boot floppy, and manually specify the partition and kernel and get the HD install to boot that way. I would say that booting has some serious issues if you are booting via partition instead of MBR.

2) Despite my having booted the CD with the lang=us option, it looks like the German version has been installed. I try booting the kernel with the lang=us option but I get German menus in kde (in spite of the KDE displaying the small US flag). I change the German menus to English (via Spanish :-(), but everything else is still in German. The output of the apt-get command is in German for instance. I have a little knowledge of German but not enough to use this system as is.

So, any ideas? I have spent about 6 hours on this so far, and am still with an essentially unusable system.

05-02-2005, 11:23 AM
How discouraging for you!

Here's my first thought, right off the bat - you may have a bad version of 3.8.1 that was corrected later (or maybe the earlier CEBIT version 3.8, which might have been German-only (but I don't know)). Check my uname printout:Linux mr_ed 2.6.11 #8 SMP Sun Mar 20 21:09:51 CET 2005 i686 GNU/LinuxSo first, you might try downloading it again.

Next, I recommend that you not install it. :D Knoppix isn't designed for installing to hard drive - it's fine-tuned to be a live CD. Check other posts here, and you'll find users have problems with hard-drive Knoppix in three areas.

One is that the installation script is a tad buggy. And I have a major issue with it forcing you to install a bootloader whether you need a new one or not.

Second is that installation generates random problems that don't exist when Knoppix is run from CD - broken ethernet support, broken CD-ROM access, and other strange stuff.

Third, people will install something new or update something in the distro and find that stuff no longer works together. Other folks here like Kanotix, while some of us recommend a pure Debian. Sarge, from Debian, works very well. So does Progeny Debian.

Here's another suggestion - go ahead and let Knoppix (or whatever) install a bootloader to the MBR. LILO for sure, and GrUB I believe, saves the existing MBR before writing over it. So your Winloader can be restored that way. And Windows itself can restore its bootloader. But it's not as powerful or flexible as LILO or GrUB.

Something else - it's very easy to zero the Partition Boot Sector, which will wipe out a bad bootloader.. But it's also very easy to zero out your MBR or some other necessary part of the drive. I won't go into details because you probably won't need to do it - but ask if you're interested

Final thought - try not to spend that much time frustrated with something that's supposed to be fun and easy! :D Unix-like operating systems, and Linux/GNU in particular, have come a long way, and there are lots and lots of choices.

Have fun, be happy, and remember to burn a new CD after about three times of flinging it across the room in frustration! :D

-- Ed

05-03-2005, 09:32 PM
Ed, thanks for the input. Maybe I am taking this too seriously. To be honest, I was trying to avoid the work involved in setting up Debian for the first time, having to get all the hardware to work. This can take hours, which I don't have a large supply of.

Are there other distributions that people can recommend for an easy install with hardware detection at setup? I am running a 2 year old Dell desktop.

05-04-2005, 04:24 PM
Ubuntu, fedora core3, mandriva linux-10.2, suse-9.2 should all work fairly well.
for me, a person that know what hardware I have and know some of linux, debian-sarge and Slackware-10.1 will take less than 1 hour to setup from start to finish, they DO require some knowledge though, nothing earthshatering but....

05-08-2005, 09:33 PM
I've installed it to the hd successfully, didn't have the lanugage problem until I installed grub over lilo. I've just the regional setting for US in kde and all kde apps are now English, but all other including Mozilla are in German.

Any ideas how I can fix this, must be something straightforward?

:oops: yes simple!! appending lang=us to my kernel line in menu.lst helps :-)

05-09-2005, 02:24 PM
I found exactly the same problems, 3.8.1 does not innstall the LILO, the floppy is not operational either.

The version I have is downloaded just few day sago from the knoppix website.