This installation procedure assumes that the computer that is having Linux installed on it is an IBM-Compatible desktop computer, rather than a laptop or a Macintosh of any sort. Full instructions for installation are available in the Official Red Hat Linux 5.2 Installation Guide which can be purchased at most bookstores as part of the RedHat boxed set.
  1. Pre-Installation
  2. Installation
    1. Insert the boot disk into the A: drive and the RedHat CD #1 into the CD-ROM drive, and boot the computer.
      If you do not have a boot disk, put the CD into the D drive and boot the computer to DOS. Then type d:
      cd dosutils
    2. At the boot: prompt
      • If you have a hard drive of 2.1 Gigs or smaller, hit [Enter]
      • If you have a hard drive larger than 2.1 gigs type linux hda=number of cylinders, number of heads, number of tracks
    3. Choose English as your language and press [Enter]
    4. Choose your keyboard type.
    5. Choose none for PCMCIA.
    6. Choose "Local CD-ROM" for the installation method.
    7. Choose Static IP Address.
    8. Fill in the following information in the "Configure TCP/IP" window:
      • IP address: (This is the static IP.)
      • Netmask:
      • Default gateway (IP):
      • Primary nameserver:

        This information assumes that the Default Gateway and Primary Nameserver are still at the same IP addresses as they were in May of 1999. This information should be checked with one of the network people before installation.

    9. Press [Enter] and continue.
    10. In the "Configure Network" window, fill in the following information:
      • Domain name:
      • Host name:
      • Secondary nameserver (IP):
      • Tertiary nameserver (IP):
    11. Choose "Install" and press [Enter].
    12. Choose "Custom" and press [Enter]. A Server install will install a fully working Webserver and is simpler, but learning how to install from scratch was the intention of this independant study.
    13. Choose "Disk Druid" and press [Enter].
    14. A screen will present itself with all hard drive(s) in the computer listed on the screen. Note: The [Space] bar is used to select or deselect choises within Disk Druid. Delete all the existing partitions that may be there and install new partitions according to this model:
      • Two swap partitions, each equal in size to the amount of RAM in the computer.
      • One partition named / that is at least 100 MB large.
      • A partition named /usr that is between 300 MB and 700 MB in size; the more software you plan to install, the more space should be in the /usr partition.
      • A partition named /home that is large. This is where all the user files will be placed.
      • A partition named /tmp that is 30 MB to 70 MB large. This is a useful partition for storing temporary data. Creating it prevents the / directory from filling up too quickly.
      • A partion named /var that is reasonable large. This is the partition logs will be stored in, and if you anticipate a large amount of mail or web accessing on your computer, this partition should be of moderate size.
      Write down how much space you allocate to each of these partitions; you may need it for later use.
    15. Initialize all the swap partitions.
    16. Format all partitions to make certain that the disk does not contain any bad blocks.
    17. Select the components you wish to install on your Linux box. Note: For webservers that need to run CGI, please read the documentation about installing the Apache webserver. Most of the packages you are likely to want are already selected; if you find a package that you want later on, you can install the RPM for it after the installation is complete.
    18. Select a generic mouse that matches your mouse's configuration. A serial mouse will have a square end plugged into the computer, a PS/2 mouse will have a round plug.
    19. The installer will launch the Xconfigurator. Locate your video card and select it.
    20. Locate your monitor on the list. If your monitor is not listed, select Custom and use the data from the manufacturer to determing the horizontal and vertical refresh rates and select the correct type of monitor.
    21. Choose Yes when asked if you wish to configure networking.
    22. Select the Keep this setup option.
    23. Decide whether you want your computer to be on Greenwich Mean Time, and choose a clock option.
    24. Decide what services you wish your computer to start automatically, and select them within the list presented. If you are not certain what a service does, pressing [F1] will give you a brief description of it. Allowing the computer to select the defaults is generally acceptable.
    25. Select which programs you wish to have restart upon Reboot.
    26. Configure your printer. There are no instructions for this set, as Ariel was not configured to talk to any printers.
    27. Set the Root Password. This is very important, do not forget what your password is.
    28. Create a boot diskette. Remove the diskette that you booted off of from the drive and put in a blank diskette. Then tell the computer to create the boot diskette.
    29. Set LILO to boot off the Master Boot Record (MBR).
    30. Select OK for the LILO Boot Command Line.
    31. Remove the diskette from the disk drive and allow the computer to reboot itself.

  3. Finishing Up
    Once the computer has rebooted, log in as root and use the root password you've just created. Then go to the
    creating accounts page and create an account for yourself. The root login should be used only when necessary.

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Created: May 16, 1999
Last updated: May 17, 1999