love hurts (or "d'Ya need any coasters?)

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love hurts (or "d'Ya need any coasters?)

Post by dishawjp » Tue Nov 09, 2004 9:43 pm

Ya know, I really do love Linux, but sometimes.....

FC3 was available for download yesterday. For the first time I have broadband and there's a Linux distro out that I really want. So I figured I'd just download the .iso files and burn them and have me a brandy new Linux distro a week or so sooner than if I had to order the CD's. Cool!

So, last night, after I got out of court (my second job) I started to download the .iso's. But you see, my broadband wasn't a lot of help, the servers were bogged down by thousands of other freeloaders like me and I was getting about 60 kb/s max. No problem, I don't need sleep, I need the latest and greatest Linux! So, about 1:00 AM (and about a dozen or so beers) later I had my .iso's downloaded, checked the md5sums on them and everything was great.

Today, all day, I wasn't worth a darn at work. I was like a little kid the day before Christmas. I wanted to be home, burning those .iso's and installing FC3. I was reading the FAQ's on the SELinux and about problems with the nVIDIA drivers and itching to get at the install. I won't go into any detail about the call I got in the late afternoon from my son and a problem I had to take care of for him right after work. It only took an hour or so of my time. Kids... 26 years old and can get himself into more trouble than a pack of 5 yr. olds in a minute. I didn't care anyway, 'cause I was gonna get home and be running FC3 in a couple of hours!

Well, here's where the "hurt" part comes in. I finally got home at about 6:00 or so. I fired up my computer ready to burn me some CD's and get on with the install. I even had a fresh 12 pack of Labatt's Blue to see me through the process sitting at my side. So I fired up k3b and slowed my burn rate down to 8x (it's a 16x burner, but I wanted to be sure the discs were good), and asked k3b to verify the CD's. That may have been a mistake. Three coasters later and still no good FC3-i386-disc1.iso , I disabled the "verify" option. Now I could get down to business. Hell, it had to be a k3b issue... nothing serious. So I burned the first 3 of the 5 discs and then k3b started to segfault and die and crash everything. I couldn't even run k3b as root! I needed a hard reboot and had troubles doing it. Even had to hit the power switch a couple of times. Hell, it was like I was running MSWindows again! And to make things worse, the 12 pack was empty!

So I went downstairs, brought up another half a dozen cold ones to see me through and used my faithful old standby cdrecord. One would have thought that a simple:

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cdrecord -v -eject speed=8 dev=0,1,0 /home/dishawjp/download/isos/ FC3-i386-disc1.iso 
would have bailed me in a second. I just thought that I was getting too GUI happy and should go back to the comand line where I grew up. No such luck. There was much unhappiness in the Tux Tower then. It couldn't find my CD burner. I probably needed to set up SCSI emulation, but I was too upset (and drunk) to get into that. So I even tried the Gnome Nautilus CD burner thing. It looked like it was working and while it was doing it's thing I had to replentish my diminishing beer supplies. And it was a good thing that I had an extra pack of smokes with me or I would have had to go "off site" to get more. Things weren't going too well.

Anyway, I finally had 5 CD's of questionable quality burned. I knew there would be no installation tonight (I was running low on beer again) but I wanted to see if the CD's would pass the media check. Well, CD 1 booted and passed. So did CD's 2 and 3. Hell, I chugged a cold one in celebration! CD 4 choked and croaked and failed and so did the rescue CD. So, I downed another brew, and tried to figure out what had gone wong with k3b, which had made 3 good CD's before segfaulting. I did the old "apt-get remove/apt-get install" thing... no difference. I poked around for . ~/.k3b file... there was none. I went into my .kde directory and found a couple of broken symlinks and deleted them. I dumped X and then restarted it, and hell! k3b was working again. Life was good and getting better so I had me a brew and a smoke while burning another CD! Even better, both those CD's passed the FC3 media check. So I needed another beer to celebrate and decided to burden you poor folks with my tale... all the while sipping on a cold Labatts.

So here's where I'm at. Two nights downloading and burning the .iso's and not a single byte installed. Is there any reason, other than love, that a person would put himself through this? (And, is that a love of beer or a love of Linux or both?) The worst part is that I have court tomorrow night and will not get home early enough to even consider beginning he install. Thursday, I have my Perl programming class and have to make a persentation to the Student Senate after that and probably won't be home before 11:00 PM, and Friday night I have other plans. Saturday is a mess, with things to do, including a meeting of the local LUG steering committee in the middle of the day. Hell, It looks like Sunday will be the first day I'll have a chance to even begin installing! If I had ordered the CD's for $10.00 or so, I wouldn't have gotten this installed any faster. But I would have missed out on some of the fun of playing with my Linux box and that's priceless.

Darned glad this is "The Lounge" where I can spout off and not get blasted too hard for doing it!

Just some rantings from a none-too-sober Linux lover.

Jim Dishaw

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Re: love hurts (or "d'Ya need any coasters?)

Post by Void Main » Tue Nov 09, 2004 10:38 pm

dishawjp wrote:If I had ordered the CD's for $10.00 or so, I wouldn't have gotten this installed any faster. But I would have missed out on some of the fun of playing with my Linux box and that's priceless.
Not to mention missing out on the "getting toasted in the process" part. :) Great story! I'm sure you'll have a few more chances to "get toasted" in the process of upgrading to FC3 if that's any consolation. :) I had many o' similar nights in the past starting way back in the modem days downloading the floppies for SLS and Slackware. Now I just do a little searching until I find a little used mirror and then do a:

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cd /workspace/iso; for i in 1 2 3 4 5; do wget http://blah.blah.blah/fc3-disk$i.iso > disk$i.log 2>&1 &; done
which will start downloading all 5 CDs at the same time into my ISO directory. Then I do a "tail -f logfile" to check on the progress of each download. I usually fire up the downloads before going to bed or scheduling it in cron or via "at" then check them the next morning to see if they have all downloaded. I haven't been in any big hurry to start that process this time though. I'll give the mirrors a little time to speed up and hear any horror stories from the early adopters. :)

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Post by worker201 » Tue Nov 09, 2004 11:30 pm

Funny, funny! I have the dvd downloading via bittorrent right now at the office. So when I get in tomorrow, it will be all ready to burn. Having a dvd burner put into the computer is looking like a better and better foresight all the time.

I tell ya, it's a good thing I don't drink during the week. Because this blogging program I am using to build a movie review site would have me going through cases! It's called textpattern, and it's open source, but there are not nearly as many resources out there as I would like. Kind of a crash course in php, mysql, css, xhtml, and textpattern all at the same time - very tedious!

If anyone is interested in reading my opinions about a few movies, or wants to see how slowly and pathetically my site is coming along, feel free to drop by:
http://www.triple-bypass.net/flicks/

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Post by dishawjp » Wed Nov 10, 2004 9:36 am

Hi All,

One of the things that got to me last night was not being able to use the cdrecord command. Well, I just found out why and thought I'd pass it along to the rest of you just in case you're interested. Starting in FC2, they changed the cdrecord syntax for calling the device. I dug the following out of the FC2 release notes:
The 2.6 kernel provides a new and much-improved mechanism (known as SG_IO) for applications that must send raw commands to storage devices. This includes applications for burning CDs or for extracting data from audio CDs. SG_IO also eliminates the need for ide-scsi emulation, where boot-time parameters such as hdd=ide-scsi were required to support ATAPI CD burners.

Applications packaged as part of Fedora Core 2 have been adjusted to take advantage of SG_IO. For example, to burn a CD using cdrecord, the old-style command was similar to this:

cdrecord --dev=0,0,0 <iso-file>

With SG_IO, the command would be similar to this:

cdrecord --dev=<device> <iso-file>

Where <device> could be any valid IDE (/dev/hdc) or SCSI/USB (/dev/scd0) device file name.
I guess that this is an improvement, but it was not documented in the man pages, at least not anywhere I could find it.

Anyway, FWIW, that's the deal with cdrecord.

Have a good one!

Jim

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Post by Void Main » Wed Nov 10, 2004 11:18 am

dishawjp wrote:Hi All,

One of the things that got to me last night was not being able to use the cdrecord command. Well, I just found out why and thought I'd pass it along to the rest of you just in case you're interested. Starting in FC2, they changed the cdrecord syntax for calling the device. I dug the following out of the FC2 release notes:
The 2.6 kernel provides a new and much-improved mechanism (known as SG_IO) for applications that must send raw commands to storage devices. This includes applications for burning CDs or for extracting data from audio CDs. SG_IO also eliminates the need for ide-scsi emulation, where boot-time parameters such as hdd=ide-scsi were required to support ATAPI CD burners.

Applications packaged as part of Fedora Core 2 have been adjusted to take advantage of SG_IO. For example, to burn a CD using cdrecord, the old-style command was similar to this:

cdrecord --dev=0,0,0 <iso-file>

With SG_IO, the command would be similar to this:

cdrecord --dev=<device> <iso-file>

Where <device> could be any valid IDE (/dev/hdc) or SCSI/USB (/dev/scd0) device file name.
I guess that this is an improvement, but it was not documented in the man pages, at least not anywhere I could find it.

Anyway, FWIW, that's the deal with cdrecord.

Have a good one!

Jim
Yes, I had mentioned that in a few other threads here. It eliminates the SCSI emulation layer (which Linus despised).

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Post by Calum » Mon Nov 15, 2004 5:41 am

five cds?

i suppose next it'll be expecting me to buy a bigger hard drive! perhaps linux really is becoming more like windows!

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Post by dishawjp » Mon Nov 15, 2004 6:26 am

five cds?

i suppose next it'll be expecting me to buy a bigger hard drive! perhaps linux really is becoming more like windows!
Calum,

I only needed the first 3 CD's for my install. THe 4th must be servers and all. The 5th CD is a "rescue" CD. I don't believe that it's gotten a whole lot larger (if any) than FC1 other than the addition of the rescue CD which first came out with FC2.

Jim Dishaw

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Post by Void Main » Mon Nov 15, 2004 9:03 am

Calum wrote:five cds?

i suppose next it'll be expecting me to buy a bigger hard drive! perhaps linux really is becoming more like windows!
Hardly. Linux is includes more software, not less. Windows doesn't come with an Office suite, a selection of good and *secure* browsers, accounting software, games, etc, etc. Calum, you don't have to install everything. I think it's great that they include more software. If you want a minimal install do a "Custom" install. Pretty simple actually. Besides, it fits nicely on 1 DVD. CDs are yesterday's floppies. In fact FC3 only takes up about a half of 1 DVD.

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Post by Calum » Thu Nov 18, 2004 1:31 pm

:-D

touchy, touchy, guys!

i know all that ;-) although i do think if they just made the first CD the install disk and that's it, and the rest have all the applications on i think it'd be more organised, and make it *look* less like bloatware to potential switchers. surely it wouldn't be that hard to simply move the packages around so that the ones that are imperative are all on CD1? or maybe this is the case already, but they just don't advertise it too loudly?

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Post by worker201 » Thu Nov 18, 2004 3:01 pm

With Linux, it's kinda hard to tell what's an app and what's a system tool. Arguments could be made either way with packages like apt, awk, grep, autoconf, automake, etc. I think X is considered an app too. It could get very confusing. And which disk would you put libraries on? Windows is easy - this disk is the system, that disk is Office, that other disk is additional mouse drivers we didn't think to include in the system, etc.

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Post by Void Main » Thu Nov 18, 2004 3:12 pm

So with Windows since the the browser, the movie maker, the media player are included on the system disk they are considered system tools? Really, what difference does it make? You really don't need the CDs at all to install most distros (including Red Hat/Fedora). You can just make a couple of boot floppies (or a single small boot CD if you like) and install just want you want off of the network. You can do a very minimal install if you want. If you need to do something down the road that requires some other package then you just "apt-get install someotherpackage". Pretty neat really, you don't have to get in your car and drive down to Best buy and hope you find it on the shelf, it comes right off the Ether.

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Post by caveman » Thu Nov 18, 2004 5:51 pm

Yep, I agree Void.

It is all about choice. Man I buy music CDs that come on multiple disks.
With Linux - unless you're lazy - you can pick and choose only what you need
to get something working right now.

Want a server? no X - easy - thats what you install.
Want an office or development environment - install what you need... etc. etc.
If you don't like the browser (on which the kernel/system is NOT dependant)
discard it and install something else.
Want to test a really funky piece of software in alpha release - as long
as you're not "root" - go ahead and do it. The system won't suddenly fail
or refuse to boot.

Have a look at Knoppix - hell, thats a lot of stuff on 1 CD..

So, how to distribute between several CDs I reckon will allways be very personal.
What I reckon to be part of the base *nix may not be what someone else
want. But it all there for the taking, be it off the CD or off the 'net, it is available
somewhere.

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Post by Calum » Sat Nov 20, 2004 4:12 pm

Void Main wrote:So with Windows since the the browser, the movie maker, the media player are included on the system disk they are considered system tools? Really, what difference does it make? You really don't need the CDs at all to install most distros (including Red Hat/Fedora). You can just make a couple of boot floppies (or a single small boot CD if you like) and install just want you want off of the network. You can do a very minimal install if you want. If you need to do something down the road that requires some other package then you just "apt-get install someotherpackage". Pretty neat really, you don't have to get in your car and drive down to Best buy and hope you find it on the shelf, it comes right off the Ether.
again, i know all this, and your position is rock solid, however i am always of the opinion that linux things should be thought of from the point of view of a windows user. if a windows user believes that knowing how to install windows from the CD makes them a power user, then they are not going to try this floppies/network install business, the chances are much more likely they would try a linux install CD.

and i know that on this site we don't hold much store in appeasing windoids, however i am thinking purely from the point of view of desktop "market" share. i am worried that linux and other open source projects are on the verge of missing the boat when it comes to being accepted by the mainstream users, and that would be awful in my opinion.

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Post by Void Main » Sat Nov 20, 2004 5:21 pm

Calum, my last response was a reply to worker, not you. I know you know all of this stuff but it doesn't hurt to get it all in print again for those that don't. The nice thing about Linux is it's not just one defined thing. There is big Linux (Debian), there is small Linux (Toms boot/root disk). There is CD Linux (Knoppix), there is paid for corporate Linux (SUSE, RHEL). There is middle size Linux that is great for home, play, or work (Fedora, Mandrake, Gentoo, etc).

When you get right down to it though the differences are minor. You have the source to all of them and can make them all be the same, or entirely different if you want. I know you know all of this though which is why I guess I am sometimes confused by what you say. Of course in the context of our discussion we are obviously referring to Linux as a distribution rather than Linux proper (kernel).

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Post by Calum » Sun Nov 21, 2004 1:16 pm

yes.

sorry, i didn't mean to be confusing, i was just trying to point out that distributions based on open/free software (such as *bsd and linux, but in the real world, it means linux based systems) do need to grab the public's imagination or else run the risk of becoming a limited interest thing. i have a feeling you don't much care if that happens, as i think you are 100% confident that linux systems will continue to be used in areas where reliability and perhaps configurability is the main concern, until something better arrives, in which case i suspect you'd be onboard for that too. My position is more that i think linux systems could challenge microsoft's distributions in every level they market to, but instead, they all remain relatively geeky systems, from the point of view of the common windoid.

i'm not trying to challenge you or anybody by the way in this post, just saying where i'm coming from here, so you may be less confused by what i'm saying.

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