No CD Linux installation

As promised in the last post, this post is just to describe my experience with the no CD install for openSUSE 10.3.

The reference that I used was from suse wiki and can be found here. Although, there exist yet another page which is general for any distro.

The suse wiki link was fairly accurate except that I had some hard time to figure out the real-no-CD-but-USB-disk way.

To iterate the steps I had followed:

  1. Download miniboot.iso from suse’s official site or some of it mirror. For openSUSE, I downloaded it from here. Just choose Network install as the Installation medium and then click on Mini CD.
  2. Note down the installation repository in the download page vis-a-vis this and this.
  3. Download the latest version of syslinux from
  4. Then follow the steps detailed in ‘Install without CD/DVD……’ section of the suse wiki link. I shall copy them verbatim here as well just for reference. I won’t be updating them according to my experience (E: means the USB drive…translate according to your env):
    1. Extract miniboot.iso to E: with WinRar such that E:\boot exists
    2. Move E:\boot\x86_64\loader\* to E:\ (The directory x86_64 might be something like i586)
    3. Delete E:\isolinux.bin
    4. Rename E:\isolinux.cfg to E:\syslinux.cfg
    5. Extract syslinux-
    6. CD to c:\syslinux\syslinux
    7. Run syslinux E:(What had worked for me was syslinux -m -e E:).
  5. Boot from the USB stick.
  6. I don’t remember the initial instructions on booting up but they were pretty easy to follow.
  7. The only special thing that you need to do is select Network as the installation media and configure the above-noted repositories. The repository type is HTTP. You would need to type in the IP address of the server and the remaining part of the URL (from ‘/distribution’ to the last ‘/’) as directory.
    • To find the IP just switch to another terminal (press Alt+F2), you should have a shell. Type in ping Find the IP in ‘[]’. Get back to install screen by Alt+F1.
    • You might have to configure the network manually if DHCP is not configured properly on your network.
  8. From then on the installation is like the normal installation, just a little more time consuming as all the packages were travelling over the wire.
  9. Be sure to not to include your USB disk in the partitioning info. For me it confused the GRUB and I had to manually edit grub’s config to boot up the system.

Hope that would be helpful and spreads the word.

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One Response to No CD Linux installation

  1. In the syslinux steps, you might have to go into win32 or unix folder before executing syslinux. For unix/linux, the USB drive would be /dev/sd where can be a, b, etc.

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