How do I install w/o stomping on something else?

So I bought a new Dell. It comes with win7 which I intend to wipe. It also comes with a Dell diagnostic partition and it occupies the first part of the disk, starting at 0-0-1.
I should have realized that fat16 isn’t going to live at the end of the disk. I want to keep that diag partition. I’m under the impression that grub2 uses more space than just the
MBR.

The CPU is Ivy Bridge i7-3770. Turns out that the motherboard is Dell proprietary. I’m not too sure about (u)efi and assume I have it. I don’t know if that matters or not.
I know that I will need to download a driver for the Radeon AMD video card. I don’t know about the sound.
I plan on installing Suse 12.2 KDE 64.

I’m coming from a world OS/2 and IDE & SCSI drives and not familiar with all this new technology.
I have played with linux off & on over the last dozen years but hardware was a lot simplier back then (and distros a lot harder).
I played with grub2 on an old computer and had all kinds of problems so I don’t want to mess this one up.
I have installed Suse 9 & 10 years ago and more recently updated 10 to 11 and then 12 on an older Celeron.
I don’t know if the installer will be like prior versions of Suse or if I’m going to have to know some specific stuff about grub2 and uefi.
I do plan on placing the boot loader in ‘/’ and not the MBR, unless someone can give me a good reason to do otherwise.
My biggest concern is that the FAT16 partition is in the way of Grub2.

This is the output of lspci:

00:00.0 Host bridge [0600]: Intel Corporation Xeon E3-1200 v2/3rd Gen Core processor DRAM Controller [8086:0150] (rev 09)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
00:01.0 PCI bridge [0604]: Intel Corporation Xeon E3-1200 v2/3rd Gen Core processor PCI Express Root Port [8086:0151] (rev 09)
Kernel driver in use: pcieport
00:14.0 USB controller [0c03]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB xHCI Host Controller [8086:1e31] (rev 04)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
Kernel driver in use: xhci_hcd
00:16.0 Communication controller [0780]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family MEI Controller #1 [8086:1e3a] (rev 04)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
Kernel driver in use: mei
00:1a.0 USB controller [0c03]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB Enhanced Host Controller #2 [8086:1e2d] (rev 04)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
Kernel driver in use: ehci_hcd
00:1b.0 Audio device [0403]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family High Definition Audio Controller [8086:1e20] (rev 04)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
Kernel driver in use: snd_hda_intel
00:1c.0 PCI bridge [0604]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family PCI Express Root Port 1 [8086:1e10] (rev c4)
Kernel driver in use: pcieport
00:1c.3 PCI bridge [0604]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family PCI Express Root Port 4 [8086:1e16] (rev c4)
Kernel driver in use: pcieport
00:1d.0 USB controller [0c03]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB Enhanced Host Controller #1 [8086:1e26] (rev 04)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
Kernel driver in use: ehci_hcd
00:1f.0 ISA bridge [0601]: Intel Corporation H77 Express Chipset LPC Controller [8086:1e4a] (rev 04)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
00:1f.2 SATA controller [0106]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family 6-port SATA Controller [AHCI mode] [8086:1e02] (rev 04)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
Kernel driver in use: ahci
00:1f.3 SMBus [0c05]: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family SMBus Controller [8086:1e22] (rev 04)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller [0300]: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] nee ATI Turks [Radeon HD 7500 Series] [1002:675d]
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:2b22]
01:00.1 Audio device [0403]: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] nee ATI Turks/Whistler HDMI Audio [Radeon HD 6000 Series] [1002:aa90]
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:aa90]
Kernel driver in use: snd_hda_intel
02:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Atheros Communications Inc. AR9485 Wireless Network Adapter [168c:0032] (rev 01)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0209]
Kernel driver in use: ath9k
03:00.0 Ethernet controller [0200]: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL8111/8168B PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet controller [10ec:8168] (rev 07)
Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:0546]
Kernel driver in use: r8169

The output of parted is:

Model: ATA ST31000524AS (scsi)
Disk /dev/sda: 1000GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
Partition Table: msdos

Number Start End Size Type File system Flags
1 32.3kB 41.1MB 41.1MB primary fat16 diag, type=de
2 41.9MB 16.3GB 16.3GB primary ntfs boot, type=07
3 16.3GB 1000GB 984GB primary ntfs type=07

My first thought is that I will have the above FAT16 primary, and then /, /home, & /swap

I needed to use nomodeset on the liveCD, assume I will do same with the install. Do I need to use any other kernel options?

thanks, Jon

If you install the proprietary ATI driver (properly), you won’t even need “nomodeset” - meaning this option will have no effect, since KMS will be disable in initrd. An easy and safe method to install the fglrx driver is to install atiupgrade from my repo and simply type atiupgrade as root.

Please next time you mix computer output with story telling, use ODE tags around the computer text: http://forums.opensuse.org/english/information-new-users/advanced-how-faq-read-only/451526-posting-code-tags-guide.html

And about the partitioning. I personaly would just run the installation and when it comes to the last proposal before the real installation starts, I would then use the partitioner there to remove the two NTFS partitions and create the partitions wanted (for /, /hom and swap (not /swap, that partitions is used for swap space and not mounted anywhere).

But it may be easier for you to remove the two NTFS partitions using some bootable CD (parted or fdisk from a live CD or whatever). Thus you will only have the one recover partition and free space. Then install. Look at the proposed partitioninng before the last GO. You will most probably see tthat the installer did just what you wanted.

BTW the name is openSUSE not Suse. This remark may look a bit pedantic, but there is also SUSE Linux (short SLES/SLED) and misunderstanding here is easy.

On 2012-11-07 09:46, 6520302 wrote:
>
> So I bought a new Dell. It comes with win7 which I intend to wipe. It
> also comes with a Dell diagnostic partition and it occupies the first
> part of the disk, starting at 0-0-1.
> I should have realized that fat16 isn’t going to live at the end of the
> disk. I want to keep that diag partition. I’m under the impression
> that grub2 uses more space than just the
> MBR.
>
> The CPU is Ivy Bridge i7-3770. Turns out that the motherboard is Dell
> proprietary.

Try running the live CD first to see if it works.

> The output of parted is:
>
> Model: ATA ST31000524AS (scsi)
> Disk /dev/sda: 1000GB
> Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
> Partition Table: msdos
>
> Number Start End Size Type File system Flags
> 1 32.3kB 41.1MB 41.1MB primary fat16 diag, type=de
> 2 41.9MB 16.3GB 16.3GB primary ntfs boot, type=07
> 3 16.3GB 1000GB 984GB primary ntfs type=07
>
>
> My first thought is that I will have the above FAT16 primary, and then
> /, /home, & /swap

IMO that FAT is not for diagnostics, but it is Windows boot partition.
#2 is Windows C:, and #3 can be either diagnostics, restore, or both.

Typically you resize #2 using Windows own tools (if you want to double
boot), perhaps shift #3 down, then add an extended #4 in the remaining
free space (old #2).

I typically make an image of the rescue partition, and of the MBR.


Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” (Minas Tirith))

He clearly stated that he does not want a double boot. Thus why this confusing information?

On 2012-11-07 12:46, hcvv wrote:
>
> robin_listas;2501839 Wrote:

> He clearly stated that he does not want a double boot. Thus why this
> confusing information?

Just in case. I don’t think it is confusing, because he has wrongly
identified the diagnostic partition: not the first, but the last.
Besides, diagnostics do not make sense without Windows (unfortunately).


Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” (Minas Tirith))

I agree with the last, I would wipe the diagnostics also being of no use.

But when somebody gives us a good impression about what he wants (and that is realy an exception as you know, because most have no idea what they want), we could try to help him for just that. Reading all the different possiibilities and the “if you want…” Howtos on the internet is bewildering enough. And when then somebody comes here with a clear question, why should one then add all sorts of not applicable information to make it bewildering again? But that is only my opinion on this.

Dear Please:

I am aware of your repo and intended to install it. However, I will be installing from the liveCD and it won’t go anywhere unless I put something in the kernel options line. I read a thread about nomodeset and that works to allow me to boot live. Is nomodeset not necessary if I do the install, presumably because the install starts off with different video settings?

I just don’t want to start down a path only to have it fail on me.

thanks,
jon

Henk:

Opps, sorry about that snafu and thanks for posting that FAQ link.

I do plan on removing the ntfs partitions prior to install.

I’ve wondered about the name openSuse and incorrectly assumed I could shortcut that name. Thanks for setting me straight.

Jon

I did that and I need nomodeset (or maybe a different option will work too?) for it to work.

> The output of parted is:
>
> Model: ATA ST31000524AS (scsi)
> Disk /dev/sda: 1000GB
> Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
> Partition Table: msdos
>
> Number Start End Size Type File system Flags
> 1 32.3kB 41.1MB 41.1MB primary fat16 diag, type=de
> 2 41.9MB 16.3GB 16.3GB primary ntfs boot, type=07
> 3 16.3GB 1000GB 984GB primary ntfs type=07
>
>
> My first thought is that I will have the above FAT16 primary, and then
> /, /home, & /swap

IMO that FAT is not for diagnostics, but it is Windows boot partition.
#2 is Windows C:, and #3 can be either diagnostics, restore, or both.

Typically you resize #2 using Windows own tools (if you want to double
boot), perhaps shift #3 down, then add an extended #4 in the remaining
free space (old #2).

I typically make an image of the rescue partition, and of the MBR.

Carlos:

Thanks, I’ll look at that F16 partition again, more carefully, but it is labeled ‘diag’ and
I understand that win7 (I’ve never used it) requires 2 ntfs partitions and that is how the
next 2 part’s are labeled.

I already imaged the above. I feel confident that the F16 is not a boot partition.

Jon

Henk:

I have considered wiping it but to my best understanding, and I could be wrong, this is the partition that contains diagnostics that runs when a user presses F12 upon startup. It enters a diagnostic screen that I have not yet fully examined. It provides tools that I consider useful, such as a RAM test resembling the info one gets when running memtest. And other system hw related checks.

When I installed OS/2 on my Thinkpad the bootmanager removed the capability to enter the diag partition so perhaps this might happen when I install grub on the Dell. I might find that it will be of no use because I might not be able to access it once I’ve installed.

I’d also like to apologize for adding several posts to this thread in reply to various posts. I didn’t see how I could appropriately respond in a single post.

Since no one commented on grub2 I guess I’m not going to find an issue there.

Thanks everyone for the useful info.

Rgds, Jon

No. Whether ‘nomodeset’ is necessary or not with the open source driver depends on the model of your graphics card, whether ATI or nvidia. We see both cases here. To test atiupgrade with both the legacy and the current driver, I had to switch between an onboard HD Radeon 4290 chipset and a HD 6450 gfx card and boot a fresh install with the open source driver. One of them (don’t remember which one) requires ‘nomodeset’ while the other doesn’t care. I haven’t been able for years to boot a live system or install Linux on Nvidia GeForce 6150 (and probably most other GeForce 6x) without adding ‘nomodeset’, while the GeForce 8400 GS never required this option. In any case, it won’t hurt to use ‘nomodeset’ in doubt, and if Linux setups and live systems would simply deactivate kernel mode setting by default when an ATI or nvidia VGA chipset is detected, most users would have less problems, while just a few ones would get a less optimal but still acceptable resolution for a setup - in my opinion.

OS/2 boot manager required its own primary partition. AFAIK, the only boot manager which was able to boot OS/2 in a logical partition without the help of a bootmanager partition was eXtended FDisk (http://images.tecchannel.de/images/tecchannel/bdb/333137/890x.jpg).

You are correct. I had forgotten that point.

Anyway, after installing BM, I could no longer access the Thinkpad Diag partition (I believe it is called rescue & recovery) using the special key. I was able to access it by adding it to the BootMgr menu.

Jon

On 2012-11-07 18:16, 6520302 wrote:
> Thanks, I’ll look at that F16 partition again, more carefully, but it
> is labeled ‘diag’ and
> I understand that win7 (I’ve never used it) requires 2 ntfs partitions
> and that is how the
> next 2 part’s are labeled.

It requires one partition only, but it is best installed with two
partitions, one boot about 50…100MB, and then the main one. The last
partition of 1G I’m almost sure it is the factory recovery partition.


Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” (Minas Tirith))

OK, I’ll have to give your comment here a closer look. My video card is a AMD Radioo HD 7570. I didn’t have a choice in this selection, the machine came with this card. However, it apparently there is an onboard video that I could enable. I didn’t really want to do that unless I must. If I remove the AMD and use the onboard then I’ll later on have to fiddle around with changing drivers and my lack of experience with Linux is likely to make this option more difficult than trying to use the Radion to start with. I doubt I will need whatever options this card offers, I have not yet researched it’s capabilities. I’m annoyed by the fact that it has only an HDMI & DVI outputs. Dell provided a ‘gender changer’ type adapter to accomodate a vga connection. That makes me think of a duct-tape solution. I got so wound up in the fantastic limited time price of the machine that I failed to properly research it. Oh well.

Rgds,
Jon

Carlos:

The fat16 partition contains command.com and 2 files (dell*.bin). Looks like a diagnostic type implementation to me.

I just finished deleting and wiping the ntfs partitions.

The machine now boots to a dos C: prompt and if I choose F12 it gives me a diagnostic program and refers to a UEFI ROM.

I believe that fat16 partition contains the files that run the diagnostic program

Now to start the openSuse install…

No doubt I’ll be back with more questions…

Jon

OK, I just tried the install with no kernel options. I get a flashing green screen and no keyboard. Adding nomode set and the Welcome dialog displays so I guess I need some kernel option, I don’t know if it should be the nomodeset or if it needs to be a vga mode setting.

Anyway, I’m going with this.

Question: Does this mean nomodeset gets written into the installed kernel or is it simply active during the current session?

Jon

Jon, I never said that you should not use ‘nomodeset’ to boot. In most cases, you don’t have the choice. I only said that once you have installed the proprietary driver, this option is not required anymore. Be careful if you intend to switch between on board and in slot video, as the devices won’t be on the same PCI Bus, and if xorg.conf includes this information, X won’t start anymore and give you a no screen found error.
Example:

Section "Device"
        Identifier  "aticonfig-Device[0]-0"
        Driver      "fglrx"
        **BusID       "PCI:1:5:0"**
EndSection

The BusID will be wrong after you switch video slot/on board. Thus you will have to change this value manually. You can read this info from lspci output:

$ lspci | grep -i vga
**01:05.0 **VGA compatible controller: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] nee ATI RS880 [Radeon HD 4290]

It is just active for the current session. You can also disable KMS permanently by rebuilding initrd … and that’s exactly what the rpm post-install script of ATI and Nvidia proprietary drivers do.

$ rpm -q --scripts fglrx64_xpic_SUSE121 | grep -A 2 KMS
# recreate initrd without KMS, if the use of KMS is enabled in initrd
# The developer of openSUSE 12.1 changed the name of KMS configuration.
# In the future we should add a switch for openSUSE 12.1. Currently
# both variable are used.
if grep -q '^NO_KMS_IN_INITRD=\"no\"' /etc/sysconfig/kernel; then
    echo "Disable KMS to prevent driver issue:"
    sed -i 's/^NO_KMS_IN_INITRD.*/NO_KMS_IN_INITRD="yes"/g' /etc/sysconfig/kernel
    mkinitrd
fi
if grep -q '^KMS_IN_INITRD=\"yes\"' /etc/sysconfig/kernel; then
    echo "Disable KMS to prevent driver issue:"
    sed -i 's/^KMS_IN_INITRD.*/KMS_IN_INITRD="no"/g' /etc/sysconfig/kernel
    mkinitrd
fi

If you don’t want or don’t need the proprietary dirver (flgrx), then you won’t install it and you will need to either use ‘nomodeset’ … or rebuild initrd without KMS - again, with your model of ATI.