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(?) Unable to Install Linux

From N P

Answered By Ben Okopnik

see attached equipment list

(?) I am trying to install RH 6.2 on the WD 12.3GB drive. However, it hangs during the installation (after the partitions are formatted and progress dialogs starts).

(!) [Ben] If you're using the graphical install, I suggest that you do not. All "freezing" problems that I've had with RedHat installations happened with GUI-based installations; all of them were resolved by going to the text-based one.

(?) Well not quite true. If i don't select any packages (no X, compilers, multimedia, etc) to install, it installs fine.

(!) [Ben] The program that installs RedHat is a huge, complicated thing that goes into weird contortions once in a while. If you simply cannot manage to install a full system by using it, install the basic system and whatever packages are necessary to dial up and do FTP (those should actually be a part of the basic system, but I'm not certain), and download a copy of 'rpmfind' <http://www.rpmfind.net/linux/rpmfind/rpmfind.html>;. This program will connect to an "RPM server" and download whatever packages you specify, automatically resolving dependencies in the process. It's a not-quite-as- powerful knockoff of Debian's 'apt' tool, but is actually reasonably mature and useful.
Another option is to try installing another distro; I'm a real Debian zealot, myself. One of the many reasons that I really like it is that something like the above procedure is already one of the standard installation options: the base system install takes 5-10 minutes, you tell 'apt' which of the many available servers you want to use, and walk away. 'apt' can use FTP, HTTP, local CDs, or packages right off the HD - and you can mix-and-match sources however you like. Dependency problems? What are those? <grin>

(?) When the installation hangs there is no response to any keypress and it doesn't hang at the same part of the installation i.e. at the beginning (just starting), middle, or end (seconds to go).

(!) [Ben] Hm. Have you run a good memory test on the machine? There are plenty of tools available, but my favorites are the old DOS "burn-in" tool and Linux's "memtest86" (interestingly enough, "memtest86" doesn't require Linux: it is a bootable image that can be run from a floppy!) "memtest86" is a part of the "hwtools" package, at least under Debian. Run either one of them for a minimum of 24 hours.

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