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Network OS installs?


VaKo
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So i'm to poor to buy more blank CD's for a week or so, being a student and all. Aside from googling (which i'm doing), where do i start with a network install of linux or BSD? And can it be done with windows XP/2003 as well? Does the bios have to support booting from a LAN? Or do I need to load some form of boot/live CD and do it from that? Anyone know of a good idiots guide or something similar?

Thanks for your help.

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Most distros have a network install. You are most likely to find them in the same place as the ISOs, mainly because some of them are now CDs. Some still do floppies, but burning 1 CD rather than 5 is good.

OpenBSD is mainly downloaded from the net because they charge for the CDs as a way of making some money to keep the project going. OpenBSD would be a good thing to look into for replacing 2003.

The machine doesn't have to boot from lan, the network install discs/floppies, carry the installer and drivers for network cards so you can set them up on the network. You'll just need to check that your network card is supported (most are), and then have the details for the network, so IP, subnet, gateway IP.

I don't know of a complete idiots guide but most distro will have documentation on how to perform an network install. Its not had as once the setup can find the files on the internet then its like a normal install.

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Ahh... i grab it from there FTP, not my local LAN. Was wondering if i could use a ISO mounted on one machine to install and OS on another machine. Or some kinda local FTP server and a firewire network.

So all i need to do is burn the boot disc/disc1 installer, load it up, and point it to the files where ever they may be?

Nice one!

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The easiest network install to do is Debian, I have it on 3 floppies which is brilliant if your trying to turn a P2 laptop in to a asterisk box, it’s as simple as downloading the 3 .img files from http://linux.simple.be/debian/floppy and if your going to be making them on a Windows box, just click on the “these programs†link and download one of the free diskette image tools and then all you need to do is make the 3 floppies using it, then stick in the first disk “boot.img†then once that’s installed it will ask you for the next “root.img†then “net-drivers.img†as long as you are hooked into your network it will automatically detect your setting and just follow the easy to use steps on the screen and it will download all the files you need for a base install of Debian.

Then it’s just a matter of using “apt-get install†and the name of whatever software and GUI you need and it will get it for you, your have to use wget and the site address if it doesn’t have it, you can get a list of Debian packages from http://www.debian.org/distrib/packages .

The hardest thing about installing Debian is configuring it to work with your graphics card, but then again it’s not that hard if you have a little experience with Linux.

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If you are planning to use OpenBSD as a desktop then I wouldn't recommend it as much, for a desktop then FreeBSD is betteer. OpenBSD is a bit too hardcore and is much better being a firewall/router/gateway type appliance, as a server.

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If you are planning to use OpenBSD as a desktop then I wouldn't recommend it as much, for a desktop then FreeBSD is betteer. OpenBSD is a bit too hardcore and is much better being a firewall/router/gateway type appliance, as a server.

What about DesktopBSD? ^^

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There is DesktopBSD and PCBSD, which are fine for people who don't want to use Windows and arn't very technical. FreeBSD takes a bit more work but I think is a better OS. It has has been around for a long time and its rock solid.

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I agree, FreeBSD is nice, but DesktopBSD makes using BSD that much easier on the desktop (DesktopBSD is based on FreeBSD btw), although DesktopBSD 1 has been realeased, it still feels more like RC4, still got a couple of bugs in it.

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To be honest my only reason for installing BSD is because I have no idea what it does, what its for or what I can make it do. More of a learning tool than a production enviroment. Thanks for everyones input though, i'll give it a whirl and see what i screw up first.

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I love FreeBSD and am glad to see that others are getting interested. I am still fairly new to the OS (only been using it a couple of years) but have found that the FreeBSD Handbook and FreeBSD-Questions mailing list are both very helpful (much more so than anything OpenBSD offers.

As for your dilemma with not being able to afford new blank CDs, get some CD-RWs. I purchased 2 packs a couple of years ago (for about $15) and have been using those CD-RWs ever since. They're great if you're using something that you may not be interested in having after a while (like installer ISOs).

Ben

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