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Linuxhelp _ Reviews _ Slackware 10.0

Posted by: hughesjr Jun 26 2004, 10:37 AM

One thing I want to say is that to install slackware, you need to understand how to use some tools from the console. The most important one is fdisk. Here are a couple good tutorials on using fdisk:

In depth HowTo about Linux Partitions:

Using fdisk:

To do a linux install, you will need to create at least 2 partitions on your drive. A root partition and a swap partition. As a general rule, I create a 1gb swap partiton if I have the room. A full Slackware 10 install is 3.2gb ... you want at least double that amount for your primary partition (so at least a 6.4 gb root partition). So if you have at least 7.5gb hard drive partition space free, I recommend that you use 1gb as swap space. I used 1gb swap, 10gb root.

On with the review:

1. Booted the Slackware 10.0 CD-1. I only needed the bare ide kernel to install on my test system (800 mhz Pentium III with 768mb RAM and 10gb IDE partition (/dev/hda6) for slackware). So at the boot prompt I pressed enter.

2. I was asked about a keyboard map ... since I wanted to use the standard english keyboard, I pressed enter.

3. Next, you login as root ... just use the username root ... there is no password

4. Here is where you need to setup the disc partitions with fdisk. I already had a 1gb swap partition on /dev/hda3 and a blank 10gb partition on /dev/hda6 for the slackware install.

5. I typed setup to start the install ... up came the Slackware install menu. I skipped to the Add Swap section ... picked /dev/hda3 and I was off.

6. Next I picked the root partition for my install (/dev/hda6), used reiserfs (the slackware default selection) as the filesystem and let slackware auto detect my CD for install. At this menu, you can also do a network install or a Hard Drive install, if not using the ISOs.

7. Next comes the packages you want to install. I choose just to install the already selected items (which was everything except KDE international ... it did include standard KDE).

8. Next comes how I wanted to do the install, I picked Full ... which will install the packages without any other questions. Half way through, it asked for CD-2.

9. Next came installing the kernel. I picked to use a Kernel from the CDROM. The kernel that i need is the bare.i (for bare ide). There are many other kernels with SCSI and other support.

10. I skipped making a boot disc ... and I skipped installing a modem (this is NOT for installing a DSL/CABLE Modem ... only dial-up modems).

11. Next came a question about enabling hotplug. Hotplug is a system to detect hardware when the system boots, and automatically load the modules for everything it detects. I normally turn this on with all my OS installs, and I did so here.

12. I setup lilo to boot from my root partition.

13. I used the DHCP option for my network configuration.

14. I picked gnome as my GNOME window manager.

15. After completing the configuration, I exited. I also exited the setup menu, then pressed ALT-CTRL-DEL to reboot...and booted into my new slackware.
As is always the case when I install slackware, I had to edit my X configuration manually for the default monitor and Display card settings.

Slackware 10.0 uses X.Org version 6.7.0 instead of XFree86's version of X Windows. This is the X Windows system now used by most of the major distros. The only real difference, from a setup perspective, is that I had to edit the file /etc/X11/xorg.conf ... instead of the old standard /etc/X11/XF86Config. The xorg.conf file is exactly the same ... I changed the Display section, the Monitor section to the proper values for my hardware, and I was able to startx and get into Gnome version 2.6.1.

This slackware looks and works just like the previous versions, except it has newer componets. You have a totally generic Gnome and KDE, to configure however you want.

If you like Slackware, you will like this version. Everything installed and worked the first time. If you are new to Linux, you will probably not know what to do next. There are not any graphical user / group add or other system admin tools (here is a for slackware that might help)... And although this really is the best slackware yet, I just don't recommend it to linux newbies.

There is good web browsing (Mozilla 1.7, Konqueror 3.2.3, Epiphany 1.2.6, Galeon 1.3.15). You can read your e-mail graphically (kmail, Mozilla Mail) ... or use the ol' text mail standards mutt, mailx, etc.

Also included is the Totem Movie Player and Xine.

Missing is and Evolution ... although Koffice and the stand alone products AbiWord and Gnumeric give you plenty of Office functionality.

I think OpenOffice and Evolution should be included, as they are the defacto standards for GNU/Linux nowadays. I also think that some graphical tools for system administration would make this a better distro.

Most slackware users would probably say those suggestions are dumbing down the distro ... and they would be correct ... but I think the distro would be much the better for it.

Remember, this is just one person's opinion smile.gif.

Overall, this is a good distro. As I said before, if you like Slackware, you'll love this version.

Posted by: wookmaster Jun 26 2004, 10:45 PM

yeah I just tried it the other day and I could not get the graphics to work right, I reconfigured the x config files like 15 times for monitor resolutions and frequencies and just could not get it to go so I quit and put mandrake on. Definately not for beginners.

Posted by: beltucadros Jan 9 2005, 01:13 PM

I love my slackware distro. for a couple of reasons. It keeps people away from my computer even those who have a minimal experiance with Linux. I think that is due to starting in run level 3. also, it is much faster than fedora or mandrake were for me. one major problem though that i have is that there is no update program that is distributed witht eh distro, but slapt-get is ok wont upgrade major versions , or at least i cant figure out how to. but other than that i can't complain. Slack found my old ati 7500, and my onboard intel sound driver. which is more than i can say for some distros. im very pleased

Posted by: matt Apr 13 2005, 05:22 AM

Slackwares my only favorite Distro so far and i've used everything from Red hat, suse, fedora core 1-3, mandrake, and so on. It's simple to install and not very complex to use. I recommend it for people that want to really get into learning linux, and Gentoo for those of you that want to get even deeper.

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