very bad experience installing edubuntu edgy
gmccullagh at gmail.com
Wed Dec 20 11:58:41 UTC 2006
having failed to install our second server with dapper some time back, I
tried last night to install edgy. The server is an IBM xSeries 336.
I downloaded the edubuntu-*-install-i386.iso from my local mirror and burnt
the cd. I deliberately picked the install cd and not the live one,
thinking that I was getting what ubuntu call the "alternate" installer, it
the old fashioned text-based one. It now appears that there is no
alternate install cd, you have to use the live installer. I have had
nothing but bad experiences with live installer, so this presents something
of a problem to me.
I decided to proceed with the installation using the live cd installer and
double clicked on the desktop icon, filling out the basic info.
Then I got to partitioning. I really want to use software raid. This
server is going to be relied upon by 20-40 users for their desktop so it
*must* be fault tolerant and inform us when there is a fault. Unless I'm
mistaken, there seems to be no way to configure software raid or install
onto it using the edubuntu live installer. The text-based installer did
provide this functionality, albeit the system didn't actually boot for me
in the end.
As all of my old partitions (from the last failed install) were still
present, I just needed to tell the partitioner how to pair them up and what
filesystem to put on the resulting raid partitions. I could work out no
way to do this.
I decided to just go ahead and install onto a single existing 9GB
partition. I disabled the other partitions and just configured the root
and swap partitions. The installer proceeded and then bombed out
complaining that it could not create a root filesystem. I guessed this
might be to do with the partitions being labelled for raid, but when I
looked back, gparted appeared to have change the label to ext3. I tried
again and it failed again.
I decided to discard the other partitions and install onto a fresh
system. I then opted for the simple install with non-interactive
partitioning. This failed at the same step. I then manually wiped the
partitions off the disk with cfdisk and tried again. Again, the install
failed trying to create/find a root filesystem.
I'd love to have more feedback on later parts of the process, but I never
got to them.
I appreciate that the live installer is nice for newbies but it seems to
remove support for a whole host of useful things like software raid and is
really horribly unreliable and slow in my experience. Please could we have
the alternate installer back?
Would I be better off just installing regular ubuntu and adding the extra
-edu packages? Does this really create the exact same environment as the
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