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 Forum index » Taking the Puppy out for a walk » Puppy Power
10 pc Cybercafe for 30ukp!!!!
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dancingdog777

Joined: 17 Mar 2007
Posts: 49
Location: Bournemouth, UK

PostPosted: Thu 27 Sep 2007, 15:07    Post subject:  

If I can quote Big Pilot on his topic at http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=18297 on Sun May 20, 2007,
"better usabillity. Puppy does most things great but it would only take a small amount of tweaking to make it truly noob-proof. I've suggested a better HD installer in another post."

Despite that Puppy is still difficult to install on a hard drive. As I mentioned above I tried four times and met with four failures.

Now Chris, don't fly off the handle again, it doesn't help any. Instead perhaps you could try to recreate the fault on your own computer, by pretending you are a Puppy newb who is attempting to do a hard drive install. If you can create the fault then perhaps you can offer a solution which would help everyone.
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HairyWill


Joined: 26 May 2006
Posts: 2949
Location: Southampton, UK

PostPosted: Thu 27 Sep 2007, 16:25    Post subject:  

dancingdog777 wrote:
Yes. Four times and it didn't work.
In the interests of product improvement, which puppy version and did you record any error messages. We might also be able to get it to work for you.
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dancingdog777

Joined: 17 Mar 2007
Posts: 49
Location: Bournemouth, UK

PostPosted: Thu 27 Sep 2007, 17:14    Post subject:  

HairyWill wrote:
dancingdog777 wrote:
Yes. Four times and it didn't work.
In the interests of product improvement, which puppy version and did you record any error messages. We might also be able to get it to work for you.


It was the version included with ecopup 0.7.1 that the cybercafe uses.
I couldn't understand that it works for them but not for me. Surely they don't boot up each computer from a Live Cd every day do they? As booting the live CD takes well over 5 minutes on my machine (P4 2.66Ghz, with 1Gb RAM) doing all their's would take ages.

Tonight I've d/loaded the latest (94 Mb I think) and will try again.

I'm sorry if my other post offended people, it honestly wasn't intended. Perhaps non Brits (no offence!) think differently and would read my remarks differently.

Puppy looks nice, so nice in fact that I'd like to run it alongside XP, as a dual boot, but if it means I have to boot the 'puter from a floppy disc every time, well, obtaining new floppies is nearly impossible these days since shops no longer stock them.
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dancingdog777

Joined: 17 Mar 2007
Posts: 49
Location: Bournemouth, UK

PostPosted: Thu 27 Sep 2007, 17:40    Post subject:  

Nope, that one won't work either.

I selected Universal installer, was prompted to run Gparted, made the hd a linux swap partion, it said OK finished. I re-booted the computer, ran universal installer again, selected IDE hd, it asked me to confirm, then told me "Nothing to install, did you forget to plug in a flash device". I tried again three times, but it didn't want to play.

Grrr, frustration to the power of 100!!

I've tried and tried and tried, but this distro is obscenely difficult to load.
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HairyWill


Joined: 26 May 2006
Posts: 2949
Location: Southampton, UK

PostPosted: Thu 27 Sep 2007, 18:38    Post subject:  

I'm not sure about the advice the universal installer is giving you.
A swap partition is just a place for the OS to dump stuff whilst it is running you can't save stuff to it.
Are you making at least one other normal partition as well?
One sensible partition scheme would be
1) 2-5GB for puppy
2) the rest for data
3) 1-2GB swap

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richard.a


Joined: 15 Aug 2006
Posts: 510
Location: Adelaide, South Australia

PostPosted: Thu 27 Sep 2007, 19:10    Post subject:  

Hello, dancingdog777,

Interesting that the one you condemn is associated with what you have repeatedly been told is a non-standard version. I'm not attacking you over this observation, my friend.

My success has been 100% on many many installations of standard official releases, from 2.00 through to 2.17, using the standard settings in the standard installer.

Even on the distribution in question with the standard Ver 2.15ce which is what actually installs before you do surgery on the file system to accomodates ecomoney's modifications. (I have yet to do the latter, to prove that I can safely put that download on line as working)

Perhaps you are confusing Grub not booting what menu item you have selected with the actual installation not starting up. The installer advises you to check the /boot/grub/menu.lst for its assumption that vmlinuz and initrd are where it thinks they should be, because it doesn't carry out a search when writing that statement... it expects you to do that, and the installer script advises you to do that, while you are still running in Live Mode.

If it doesn't boot, then restart in Live Mode and go and check out /boot/grub/menu.lst comparing it with the actual locations of those files.


If it still doesn't work after that check, then maybe, depending on what doesn't run, you have a bad downloaded ISO or the burn wasn't good. Many an installation of many Linuxes have been branded as "won't work" because of a badly burned CD (burned too fast perhaps) or a corrupt iso file that was burned.

If all four of your bad installations have been from the same CD burned from the same iso, then that is likely your common factor, not the product.


There are two stages of booting, my friend. And yes, I like PCLinuxOS also, it's a ripper. But a ripper for a different purpose Smile

First stage uses the Initialise Ramdisk (initrd) which sets up the ramdisk and copies loading files there. If that works, then the next stage is where those files unzip the compressed linux kernel (which is why it's named vmlinuz - the z on the end points to that.

If that works fine the next step is to see if it gets a Graphical User Interface. That is where the first time it asks you to configure the X-Server which most associate with just the Screen... but it also configures other external peripherals such as pointer (mouse, tablet or pen), keyboard et cetera.

If you already knew all this stuff, please pardon my assumption that you didn't because your comments came across as someone who expected full automation. And no, from experience, even your and my beloved PCLinuxOS requires user input at several times during the process.


The only times the standard puppy installer hasn't worked with me are

1- with incorporating grafpup (which is a different product, based on puppy, but employing slight variations in the filesystem tree), and

2- when adding extra lines to menu.lst for extra boot choices and making a typo with the partition identification on multiple booting scenarii.

Seriously, the installer that we've used for a while, has done a sterling job of getting it right.

Don't think I'm a guru either. My writing perspective has always been KISS, aka Keep it Simple, Stupid which can tend towards verbosity if you set out to avoid long words. I used to write specifically for non-computer-literate draughtsmen who had been dragged screaming into the world of Computer Aided Design and Draughting in what was then Australia's best CAD monthly.

If you are genuinely having all manner of problems running the installer, you may care to PM one of us with exact details.

BTW my four failed attempts had nothing to do with installing. They were download failures - a different ballgame in a different ballpark. Web server bandwidth hiccups in all probability.

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cthisbear

Joined: 29 Jan 2006
Posts: 3469
Location: Sydney Australia

PostPosted: Thu 27 Sep 2007, 20:57    Post subject:  

dancingdog777

" Now Chris, don't fly off the handle again, it doesn't help any. "

Gee....thought I was being nice...must be a bit of the Kelpie in me....

//////////////////////////////////////////////////////

" Despite that Puppy is still difficult to install on a hard drive. As I mentioned above I tried four times and met with four failures. "

Puppy 3.0 beta 2 picked up an old Quantum 4.3 gig ...and worked a treat..
I did select Fat32...Mr Bin?...anyway booted fine....and you can hear that
Hard Drive from down the street....saves me money on Hoon type car exhausts...just run Puppy on that drive in the car....Bewdiful mate.

Chris.

////////////////////////////////////
Edit:
I now have Robert's Ecopup.

Ian, craftybytes, muggins, tempestuous, john biles, WhoDo and fellow Oz
Puppy craftsmen ....I will post you Ecopup free....for your prevous efforts and helpful advice.
If I have missed out any Aussie gurus....within reason...I will also post you a copy.............Gekko - if you are about....PM me if you too want a copy.

Chris
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dancingdog777

Joined: 17 Mar 2007
Posts: 49
Location: Bournemouth, UK

PostPosted: Fri 28 Sep 2007, 13:20    Post subject:  

Ok Chris, must just be the diff between Aussies and us Pommies. Whingeing Poms I think is what we are refered to as!
Whatever, I didn't mean to get "up your nose".

Richard : Thanks for that. Though I've used Linux for about 6 months, I'm not used to a manual install, which is perhaps the way that you need to do it with Puppy. So if I let Gparted format the hard drive as FAT 32, then hit Universal Installer, it should install?
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cthisbear

Joined: 29 Jan 2006
Posts: 3469
Location: Sydney Australia

PostPosted: Sun 30 Sep 2007, 04:45    Post subject:  

dancingdog777:

I installed Ecopup on an old....probably near dead .4.3 gig Quantum hard drive.
Fun and games yes.
I must say that I've done only a few hard drive installs.
Plenty of USB installs that I can usually boot the first time.
And at least once I've had Puppy 2.15CE on USB...no problems.

Ah! But Ecopup.
Strange that I could have a Fat32 formatted partition and Puppy 3.0 beta2
booted perfectly.
Not on your life with Ecopup.
Tried one and all cheats over a few days.
Even set up the pup3.0 installer, moved the Pup3.main files, unzipped
Ecopup files and the new boot files, and tried to boot.
It would boot with the Ecopup CD....so at least I could see what it would look like.

So I decided to go to Plan Z...yeah! pathetic.

2.1 gig first partition...........ext2.
1.6 gig second partition.........Fat32.
400 meg swap file?

Used GParted from Puppy 3.0 Beta 2.....very good tool.
Checked that the Boot Flag was set.

I also used the Puppy 3.0 installer.
I copied all the boot files to a new folder called Pup3 just so I had them
in case I failed again....this included moving the new Pup3 main files,
pup222.sfs? and zdr222.sfs? into that folder so they wouldn't clash.

Unzipped the Ecopup files to that first partition.....including every Puppy 2.15 file.
Copied the unzipped Boot files and overwote 2 files.
Booted...70 seconds....but it is a very old drive.

Oh! happy days.
Alright it was a struggle....I went against most advice...but sometimes
you have to stretch the boundaries.

And I've often spent more time installing XP and making a backup.
Next time it should take all up about 15 - 20 minutes.

And I can well understand why Robert would like someone to make him an installer..Anyway a great distro....Chris
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ecomoney


Joined: 25 Nov 2005
Posts: 2183
Location: Lincolnshire, England

PostPosted: Sun 30 Sep 2007, 18:25    Post subject: Perseverence  

I remember asking for advice on how to get puppy to boot from the hard drive, I couldnt work out if the included hard drive installer in stock puppy was broken, or it was just beyond me to get it working. I remember getting "hot under the collar" with what I wrote myself to get advice, which wasnt particularly constructive.

The stock puppy installer is definetely (IMHO) "over-engineered" for most peoples use. I havnt tried editing the universal installer in ecopup, so it is still the same one as the stock 2.15ce. After hearing about all of the trouble it has been causing people, Im considering taking it out altogether, or at least the menu option.

Ive noticed something with puppy (and probably linux in general), and I think it comes down to philosophy. The aim is to get as many people using puppy as possible. The percentages are based on what I have "observed" in the field

At the moment, 99% of computers can be made to work with puppy, 5% of computer users have the skills/patience to do this. This means that about 4.9% of people that try puppy carry on using it.

99% people I know use puppy in just two ways, at least to start with. They either devote an entire computer to it, or they dual boot it with windows xp or 2000 (or in a couple of cases Vista.). 98% of computers can be set up this way without any special boot options (confusing).

If the installer were modified, it would mean two things:-.

1. Many more people would use puppy because they were able to get it working in the first place. They would progress to become power users.
2. A (very) small number of people would not be able to use puppy because the setup wouldnt include the advanced options for them.

The result would be more people using puppy!

As I mentioned I hope to write (or preferably have written because it will take a lot of time for me to learn to write) an installer program for when ecopup is booted. It will have an "install" icon on the desktop when ecopup is booted for the first time, which is the easiest method, and also the method that people will be used to if they have experimented with other linuxes (puppy is currently at only 17 on distrowatch so Im assuming people will have tried many others first).

The desktop icon will launch a window with three options:-

Code:

[b]Ecopup is currently running in a cutdown "live" mode, you can install it fully in many ways, here are the main ones"[/b]

1. "Dual Boot" - Set up this computer to work with Ecopup, as well as the system that is already installed (i.e. windows). Dont interfere with how the current system is set up in any way. To start ecopup I will need to have the cd in the cd drive, like it is now (why must I do this? [link]). I will take it out and restart to use the system I already have.

2. "Use entire computer" - Entirely wipe this computer of all of its information and any system currently on it. It will start with ecopup when I switch it on and I will not need the cd any more (so I can lend it to my friends! ;-) ).

3. "Do an advanced install" - Ecopup is based on puppy linux, and it has inherited many "magical" abilities from it. It can boot from a pendrive (memory stick), a zip disk, on a rewriteable cd. Setting this up can be complicated so if your new to Ecopup use one  of the other two methods until you feel comfortable.


Option 1 will unzip the ecopup.zip file to hda1, and copy the .sfs files (pup_215.sfs and zdrv_215.sfs) to the hard disk. After this has been done, a dialog will pop up to ask if they want to reboot into the newly installed operating system no or carry on using the livecd.

Option 2 will format the entire computer to ext2 (secure data shredding will be useful here for recycling operations), it will copy the files as in option 1, and also install Grub and unzip the boot.zip folder onto the hard disk. The computer will be bootable totally into ecopup (as it happens with or without the cd in).

Option 3 will start the stock puppy installer.

Conclusion
-------------

Now people here will say that this option wouldnt work in x,y, or z case. True, and it would work in the majority of cases. Meaning that more people try it would use it and get hooked on linux straight away. More people would "technically" not have computers that would work, but cant get it working for technical or useablily reasons both add up to the same thing - NOT WORKING!!!!

To cite another example, look at Debian vs Ubuntu. The reason so many more people use Ubuntu than Debian (What ubuntu is based on) is because its immediately usable by the most people (not on the most computers). Since puppy will run on even more computers than Ubuntu (Ive trialled both) without forcing the user to give up what they have already got, its only the useablility factor that keeps it at number 17.

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richard.a


Joined: 15 Aug 2006
Posts: 510
Location: Adelaide, South Australia

PostPosted: Sun 30 Sep 2007, 19:21    Post subject:  

I agree with you, Robert.

I've noticed that the "smarter" a forum responder is, the more the difficulties that will be offered to a need for the great mass of the public.

This is not a criticism of people. They do indeed have valid points.

However I've noticed it on two other forums in which I used to participate, both of which were for products aimed at the mass market.

You should have seen some of the responses to from where I was coming, which is exactly the same scenario.

I'm also working on something, quietly in the background. The attempted removal of desktop clutter for professional usage. I can see the need in your situation for many icons for your users, this isn't a criticism.

However for a business office, I believe to group icons on one or more button bars, that can be minimised, is probably a better idea. And's I'll be starting a thread shortly when I've finished marshalling screencaps and got the words down in a way that makes sense Smile

And the fact that there is a range of computer hardware that just plain will not work with version 2.12 of puppy onwards, so I'm creating "look-alikes" from 2.10 and 2.11, which are fast and effective.

So yes, Robert. I believe we need look at what you suggest, and beyond.

Richard

PS I also responded in that other thread Smile

Edit
I've been meaning to create a straightforward step-by-step page on how to do a "standard" hard disk install using the installer that ships with puppy. So perhaps this might be a suitable moment to start Smile
/Edit

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dancingdog777

Joined: 17 Mar 2007
Posts: 49
Location: Bournemouth, UK

PostPosted: Mon 01 Oct 2007, 13:49    Post subject:  

Robert has written out exactly the problem that I'm having. Puppy is a nice little distro, it's such a shame it is a real bitch to install on a hard drive.
At risk of offending you all again, you might like to sample Nimble X which is roughly the same size but installs onto the hard drive really sweetly. It found my sound card, ethernet broadband and graphics card immediately.
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rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Mon 01 Oct 2007, 14:35    Post subject:  

dancingdog777 wrote:
it's such a shame it is a real bitch to install on a hard drive.
I may be missing something on this conversation but:

From what perspective do you think it is too difficult to install to HDD?

1. Boot from the CD
2. Copy a few files (the kernel an initrd and sfs files)
3. Copy the bootloader folder (grub)
4. Create an entry on the grub.conf file
5. Install Grub to the MBR

And this is the "worst case scenario": Doing it manually which is rather simple.

If you consider that puppy includes the tools to automate most if not all of these tasks, it should be very simple.

So, I really think I'm missing something.

A basic installation (100% of the computer dedicated to puppy) should be a breeze. Easier than any Windows, Fedora, SuSE or any other install I've seen.

Of course if you want to do an ad-hoc installation, you will need to understand a little bit more but not overly difficult.

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dancingdog777

Joined: 17 Mar 2007
Posts: 49
Location: Bournemouth, UK

PostPosted: Mon 01 Oct 2007, 15:52    Post subject:  

>A basic installation (100% of the computer dedicated to puppy) should be a breeze.

Unfortuately it's not!
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rarsa


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PostPosted: Mon 01 Oct 2007, 16:07    Post subject:  

Oh,

Could you open a new thread on that?

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