2nd try. Use/Install problem

Michael Bach (gmx) bach.michael at gmx.net
Sat Sep 29 11:15:07 UTC 2007

Bill Vance wrote:
> On Sat Sep 29 00:40:51 2007 Michael Zoet wrote:
>> Bill Vance schrieb:
>>> Howdy folks;
>>> Some months ago I got Ubuntu 6.10, and couldn't get it to work, or install.
>>> I tried getting Kubuntu 6.10, and same story.  Basically, it would go so far,
>>> and then present me with, "The Black Screen Of Death".  Fiddling with the video
>>> modes got me a little further, but then again, the, "Black Screen".
>>> Near as I can figure, it may have something to do with my Matrox Mystique
>>> video card not having enough memory, or something like that, but I can't say
>>> for sure.
>>> Is there any way to get this puppy up and runnung?  I really would like to get
>>> something newer/better than my old Caldera 2.2.14 going here.
>> Perhaps you should try the alternate install CD. After installation you
>> must setup X11 manually and see what driver works best with your card.
>> And you should try a current version of (K)Ubuntu (7.04, or wait until
>> the end of the next month for 7.10)
> What alternate install CD?  When I got these, (from amazon), all I was sent
> were the DVD's.  Isn't this K/Ubuntu stuff advertised as being the most
> painless installation to date?  I suppose I should know better than to
> believe the sales dweebs.....:-(

>From my experience, there are various combinations (or even just single
pieces) of hardware that cause trouble once in a while. And this applies
to all(!) distributions, even the many "Redmond Distributions". A
windows installation on a scsi raid system is a driver nightmare. Six
years ago I installed a frame grabbeer on win2k, resulted in a hardware
activation/deactivation reboot orgy. And so on. On Kubuntu 7.04 I ran
into graphics and keyboard problems on my Thinkpad, so went back to 6.10.

However, in the absence of dark, there's bright light!
Just yesterday I installed ubuntu 7.10 (the beta) on my parents laptop.
It's an about seven year old panasonic toughbook with 128MByte of ram,
4MByte video ram. The only halfway contemporary item in it is a 30GByte
harddisk. The only way to get an [x|k]ubuntu linux on such a computer is
just the alternative install cd. Alternative install cd's come with a
very lightweight installer that runs on such a machine. The live-cd
overhead just kills any attempt on a painless installation.

Now, I will stop wiseguy mode here. To advice on your problem, you can
do the following:
- get the alternative install cd
- start your system, wait at the initial menu, make selections for
language, and then select to install a base system (I don't know how it
is called exactly in the menu)
If things go ok so far, you should have a working system with network
support and login shell, but with no X and no KDE. Log in.
- do a "sudo aptitude update"
- then "sudo aptitude install hwinfo mc"
"Hwinfo" is a program that detects your hardware. "mc" ist the midnight
commander. This provides excellent file browsing and an easy to use
editor on a terminal.
- run "sudo hwinfo --gfxcard", the output on one of the bottom lines
tells you the name of the X driver module
Now comes the installation of X and KDE:
- run "sudo aptitude install kubuntu-desktop", this will probably take
some time. After this is done you should be back on the commandline. Now
configuring X. Important here: The actual driver name, the screen
frequencies and possibly the bit-depth.
- "sudo mcedit /etc/X11/xorg.conf"
-find a section called "Device", it should only be like 3 to 5 lines
	-if not already, replace the name in the quotes behind "Driver" with
what you have found to be the driver name form running "hwinfo".
- find a section called "Monitor", only a few lines long as well
	- check the horizontal and vertical frequencies and adapt them
- find a section called "Screen", this section can be longer now
	- find the line which starts with "DefaultDepth", set the value to 16
- pressing F10 ends mcedit, save the file. Reboot.

That's what I would do, hope it helps. Mike

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