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Strange Questions

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Strange Questions

Postby burntnoodle » Wed Mar 15, 2017 1:22 am

I'm hoping someone can possibly help. Here is a quick rundown.

I sent a link of my .iso to a friend in Great Britain (I'm in the US).

As a reminder, the .iso is Debian 9 Stretch. Very minimal LXDE. It doesn't even have a browser.

There are two issues.

1. He said that the Refracta Installer showed his partitions backwards. In other words, the USB was designated as sda, and his HDD was designated as sdb. That's strange, because when I installed it, they showed the HDD as being sda and the USB was sdb. That sounds similar to how Ubuntu shows partitions. :lol:

2. He said that Wicd didn't show his Ethernet, but it did scan for wireless. He couldn't connect with his Ethernet at all. That's also strange to me, because I installed the .iso on three different computers, and it picked up the Ethernet (and wireless if available) on each one.

He doesn't know the particulars of his machine, so he couldn't tell me anything to go on. I compared my .iso's Wicd packages to a straight Debian 9 LXDE's Wicd packages, and they were the same. So I'm not sure what could be the problem.

Any ideas as to either of the two issues that could possibly help me solve this?

Note: I don't know if this matters, but I didn't copy anything to the skel folder. I just made an .iso with Refractasnapshot. I also removed the checkmark from Wicd that said (in regard to a Wired Network) "Use as default profile" before making the .iso.

I used the latest Refractasnapshot base package, and I used the latest Refracta Installer Base and GUI packages.

Thanks for any possible help.

Side Note: I understand that Refracta is based on Devuan and not Debian; therefore, there may be some differences.
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby fsmithred » Wed Mar 15, 2017 3:24 am

When you boot from usb, sometimes there's a difference between how grub and the kernel number the disks. I don't know if the source of that is the kernel, grub or the bios. If you're not careful, you can end up installing the bootloader on the usb instead of on the hard drive. (been there, done that.)

It's very odd that the ethernet didn't show up. Go into wicd Preferences (it's the arrow to the right of the Refresh button on top.) Make sure the correct interfaces are listed as defualts, usually eth0 and wlan0. Your friend can check what interfaces are found by running
Code: Select all
/sbin/ifconfig


And to show the network hardware.
Code: Select all
lspci | grep -i net


It's possible that some firmware is needed for the ethernet. If it's a new computer, a newer kernel might be needed.

Oh yeah, you said it was debian9. Instead of eth0, it may have another name. The new system names devices by their hardware location (pci address). See https://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Softwa ... faceNames/
Also, please let me know if those commands no longer work. Maybe ifconfig needs to be run as root.
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby burntnoodle » Wed Mar 15, 2017 4:25 pm

Thanks. I had actually found that page you linked to before seeing your reply.

It's definitely using different names. The article does tell how to override it, so that may be an option?

Yes, those commands still work, and root isn't needed.

Still kind of confused about the partition designations. The only time I've seen them backwards like that was when I would install plain Ubuntu from a minimal installation image.

Are you saying that even though they show the designations correctly for me, they could still be backwards on other machines? Even though it's the same .iso that was used?

Thank you.
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby fsmithred » Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:04 pm

Yes, I think the same iso or the same live-usb could get numbered differently on different machines, but I'm not certain about that. Haven't tracked it that closely, but I generally expect the designations to be switched (i.e. the booted usb as hd0 in grub).

Use the enps0blah number in the wicd settings for default interface, or change the names as described in that article. I've done the latter, because eth0 is easier to rembember and easier to type.
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby FOSSuser » Wed Mar 15, 2017 7:17 pm

Likely the installer is looking for a particular size of partition for the / partition.
(I had this problem with the AntiX graphical installer.)

Disks get their designations as they are found by the kernel at boot time, that is why they sometimes change for no apparent reason - best to use disk IDs if you need them to remain the same.

I believe you should be able to type in your network device in wicd.
(I generally use ceni, if it's available, so not certain.)
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby thwak » Wed Mar 15, 2017 9:24 pm

Disks get their designations as they are found by the kernel at boot time, that is why they sometimes change
for no apparent reason - best to use disk IDs if you need them to remain the same.
Yep, even adding a new, additional drive to an existing system can trigger changed designations.
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby burntnoodle » Thu Mar 16, 2017 1:48 am

First, thank you all for being so kind and helpful. It is very refreshing!

Second, my concern now is that IF I change the name in Wicd Preferences, a future update might nullify it. That would be fine with me, but my friends who want to try my .iso won't know what to do.

Third. systemd. Eh? Ha ha ha!

Fourth. I'm now tempted to do this all over again with a Devuan netinstall.
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby burntnoodle » Thu Mar 16, 2017 4:06 pm

burntnoodle wrote:Third. systemd. Eh? Ha ha ha!

Fourth. I'm now tempted to do this all over again with a Devuan netinstall.


GOOD GRIEF! Don't worry, this is actually great!

The bad...

I tried the Devuan netinstall. Ran into one issue. It would hang up on making the partition Ext4. I tried both graphical and text installs. Same thing with both. I had to use gparted and make the partition fat32 before I could successfully install Devuan. After that, it was smooth sailing.

The good (and amazing)...

Using Devuan, I built the same build as I did with Debian 9 Stretch. The finished .iso was over 200 MB smaller, and the ram usage was about 30 MB less on the finished product!

mwoo hah hah. MWOO HA HAAA! MWOOOO HAAA HAAAAAAAA!!!

The ugly?

For some reason, the latest Refracta Installer (?) didn't offer the pop up windows to set the location, time zone, and keyboard layout even though they did show on the installation from the Debian .iso. I checked over everything and I had it set up the same. So unless I inadvertently missed something, I'm not sure what the problem was.

I then rebuilt the image from scratch (not sure if that was needed or not). I used an older version of both the base Snapshot, base Installer, and installer GUI. Set it up, and this time it did give the pop ups for location, time zone, and keyboard layout during installation.

I will admit that I could have missed something with the latest tools, but I don't think I did?

Devuan - :)

Debian - :?

Systemd - :evil:

To fsmithred, thank you for your work. It is amazing!
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby burntnoodle » Thu Mar 16, 2017 6:27 pm

I actually timed the installation this time. From the moment I clicked the installer until it was time to boot into the new system took...

3 minutes and 23 seconds. :shock: :o :lol:

Incredible!
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Re: Strange Questions

Postby fsmithred » Fri Mar 17, 2017 11:38 am

Which devuan iso did not make ext4 on installation? Exact file name, please. (or a link to the file)

The reason refractainstaller is so much faster is because it's installing a configured system. The debian/devuan installer has to unpack and configure every package, and if it's a netinstall, it has to download the packages first.
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