gregbo (gregbo) wrote,

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Ubuntu Linux 6.06 boot from DVD

Sony Vaio PCG-FX250
800 MHz Pentium III
192 MB RAM
15" XGA (1024x768) TFT
Matshita UJDA710 CD-RW/DVD-ROM

I was in a hurry, so I didn't have much time to troubleshoot. The
Ubuntu desktop eventually came up after the boot sequence completed,
but it took over 5 minutes. Accessing practically anything off of the
DVD was sluggish; I even had to hard reboot once because the system
wouldn't respond after clicking on Help in one of the Networking
config windows. The Networking config unfortunately didn't take my
settings, because when I brought up a Terminal (shell) window and
tried pinging my default gateway, I got a network unreachable.

If I have more time, I will continue to pursue this. However, it's
not very likely because this isn't a recommended configuration
(although it's known to work). I'm getting newer, faster hardware
which should work much better. This is just to let anyone who's
interested in this configuration know what they might encounter.

Update: I tried it again, allowing more time for DVD reads to finish. First time I was able to get as far as configuring the ethernet (eth0) interface and DNS. However, the default gateway never got set. When I went back into Terminal, I was able to ping the loopback (lo) and eth0 interfaces, but couldn't ping my default gateway or anything else. I tried bringing up the Networking window again, but accidentally brought up the disk manager (the sluggishness of the DVD reads causes problems with clicking on menus). After waiting 15 minutes for the reads to complete, I decided to reboot, this time in graphics-safe mode. (The graphics window is centered and takes up about one-fourth of the screen.) I reconfigured eth0 and DNS in Networking, then brought up a Terminal to see if the default gateway was set. It was not, so I had to add it by hand using the route command. One must be root to do this, so I sudo'd and added the route. I was then able to ping my default gateway and log in to my hosted web account.

I thought I'd give running Firefox a try since things seemed to be going better. After about 15 minutes, it finally launched with an Ubuntu help file as the default page. I was able to visit my hosted web home page afterwards, although it took five minutes to load. After exiting Firefox (also took about five minutes), I did a shutdown -r now to reboot. It didn't quite work the way I thought it would; instead it halted the machine and ejected the DVD.

In conclusion, this basically a demo. One shouldn't expect to accomplish much with it, especially on a older system with little RAM and a slow DVD-ROM. A full install might work better; if I ever try it on this system I'll document it in a new journal entry.

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