Problem report

Constantine Evans constantine at
Thu Nov 9 12:46:23 UTC 2006

Calling yourself a "Linux newbie" on an Ubuntu mailing list when you 
have been using FreeBSD is going to confuse people. You certainly aren't 
what most people would consider a newbie.

First of all, 5.10 is rather old - you would probably be better off 
installing 6.06 LTS, or 6.10. Personally, I think 6.06 was the first 
really solid version.

But for the problem you are having, it sounds a bit like your loopback 
interface might not be coming up for some reason. GNOME is rather picky 
about lo being up and will hang for a quite a few minutes if it isn't. 
During the login prompt, you could try going into the console 
(Ctrl-Alt-F2, as you may already know), and running "ifup lo" as root. 
If that doesn't work,  then lo being down is nearly certainly your 
problem, and you should try running ifconfig lo up to bring up the 
interface, and then reading the interfaces(5) man page and editing 
/etc/network/interfaces to bring up lo automatically.

If that isn't the problem, I would really recommend getting a newer 
version and installing that. However, there is also a menu in the bottom 
left hand corner of the login manager, and you can use it to get a 
session that just has an xterm.

Now on to things you should know coming from a FreeBSD background. The 
apt-get command installs and removes packages from the repositories 
automatically, while dpkg manages the actual packages. Apt-cache search 
and apt-cache show are very useful for searching for and showing 
descriptions of packages that you can install with apt-get. You should 
read the man pages on these. /usr/share/doc generally doesn't contain 
very useful documentation unless you are looking for something specific 
- it generally contains things like license information, readmes, and so 
on, though for packages that have complete documentation, the docs are 
also put in there, under the package name.

Ubuntu doesn't have any ports open by default, and sshd isn't installed 
by default either. At least in 6.06, the ssh server package is 
openssh-server, which you can install with apt-get install 
openssh-server. If that doesn't work in 5.10, use apt-cache search ssh, 
and one of the results should be the right package to install. And of 
course, you can install lynx or elinks to get an ncurses-based browser.

Another thing that might confuse you once you get things working is that 
Ubuntu doesn't install a variety of things which many Linux and BSD 
users take for granted, like a C compiler, make, telnet (though netcat 
is there), ftp, and a variety of useful command line utilities. Expect 
to install quite a few packages as you notice that things are missing. 
Luckily, apt-get is very efficient and easy to use.

I hope this helps somewhat,
Constantine Evans

Charles Bacon wrote:
> Package: installation-reports
> Boot method: <How did you boot the installer? CD? floppy? network?>
> CD, burned on other computer from..
> Image version: <Full URL to image you downloaded is best>
> ubuntu-5.10-install-amd64.iso  (from
> Date: <Date and time of the install>
> Approx. 10/14/06
> Machine: <Description of machine (eg, IBM Thinkpad R32)>
> Mobo: EVGA Nforce4: 133-K8-NF41; nvidia chipsets
> CPU: AMD64 3000+ 1.8GHz
> Onboard USB, ethernet, audio;
> EVGA/Nvidia PCI-E graphics.
> 80GB Maxtor.
> SATA disk (untouched).
> Old IBM PS2 kbd; Macally LED USB mouse.
> Partitions: <df -Tl will do; the raw partition table is preferred>
> Filesystem    Type   1K-blocks      Used Available Use% Mounted on
> /dev/hda1     ext3    75838468   1788328  70197756   3% /
> tmpfs        tmpfs      511256         0    511256   0% /dev/shm
> tmpfs        tmpfs      511256     13536    497720   3% /lib/modules/2.6.12-9-amd64-generic/volatile
> So, what's the raw partition table and how can I display it?  fdisk doesn't
> seem to want to say.
> The number of cylinders for this disk is set to 9964.
> There is nothing wrong with that, but this is larger than 1024,
> and could in certain setups cause problems with:
> 1) software that runs at boot time (e.g., old versions of LILO)
> 2) booting and partitioning software from other OSs
>     (e.g., DOS FDISK, OS/2 FDISK)
> Base System Installation Checklist:
> [O] = OK, [E] = Error (please elaborate below), [ ] = didn't try it
> Initial boot:           [O]
> Detect network card:    [O]
> Configure network:      [O]
> Detect CD:              [O]
> Load installer modules: [O]
> Detect hard drives:     [O]
> Partition hard drives:  [O]
> Create file systems:    [O]
> Mount partitions:       [O]
> Install base system:    [O]
> Install boot loader:    [O]
> Installed system ok:    [O]
> Comments/Problems:
> First, I'm a Linux newbie, used to FreeBSD.  So here's the woe:
> Non-root user; fancy Ubuntu login prompt; accepts PW; response: screen
> goes dark; big vrooom sound, dark gray-brown screen with white mouse arrow,
> nothing else.  Mouse is live (clicking does nothing).  Keyboard gets no
> response.  From another computer, ping works, but no other networking.  Boot
> into single user (grub: Esc; option 5) allows /usr/bin/passwd to create root
> PW.  exit and full boot results in similar failure for root as well as user.
> Managed to set up user's .ssh, and it works.  Problem: only way for user to get
> in us through "su crtb" (my username).  Set up ssh, and it works outbound.
> No inbound services available at all.  "update-inetd --enable telnet" works,
> returns no error, yet /etc/inetd.conf doesn't exist.
> I've discovered the vastness of /usr/share/doc, but no browser; does 'less'
> have an html mode?
> Here's uname -a:
> Linux arugula 2.6.12-9-amd64-generic #1 Mon Oct 10 13:27:39 BST 2005 x86_64 GNU/Linux
> <Description of the install, in prose, and any thoughts, comments
>        and ideas you had during the initial install.>
> Downloaded the ISO, burned a CD, installed painlessly on ATA disk.  Entire disk
> taken over by Ubuntu.  All installation options taken to default.  First install
> done as default desktop (see above).  Second try as server.  No X, just basic
> black 25x80.  Third try, as default desktop.  Each time rebuilding the disk
> from scratch.  Same result on 3rd try.  Finally, in single-user mode, configged
> and ran xinit (end run around gdm).  Able to run single user, so should be
> able to install options.  Is ssh[d] available?  There's ssh, but I can't find
> sshd.  And how do I install packages?  No browser yet.

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