Sunday, July 24, 2005

Inaugural Address

When I started using GNU/Linux it didn't take long to realize it's best to keep a record of all changes I make to my OS. So I created this blog. If I do something that breaks my installation, it may enable me to undo the damage. Since I just reformatted my hard drive and effectively started from scratch, this seems like a particularly opportune time. Let's take inventory.
  • Microprocessor: Intel® Pentium® 4 3.00GHz
  • Memory: 1GB PC3200 400MHz DDR SDRAM*
  • Chipset: Intel 865G
  • Hard Drive: Western Digital® Caviar® WD800BB 80GB 7200 RPM
  • Optical Device: Samsung CDRW/DVD SM-348B
  • Removable Media: 3.5" Floppy Drive
  • Audio: Integrated AC '97 Audio
  • Video: 64MB NVIDIATM GeForce4® MX 440 AGP 8x*
  • Monitor: Dell 1703FP
  • Network Interface: Intel 82540EM Gigabit Ethernet
* Not original hardware

Now let's check out the partition table.

1540131deDell Utility
52289172 31688212+fW95 Ext'd (LBA)
5228914331455238+bW95 FAT32
9144917223291182Linux swap / Solaris

I've always assumed the Dell Utility partition has the potential to perform some important function, so I never mess with it when I reformat. All the other partitions are fresh. Windows XP requires a large (40.0GB) NTFS partition. The OS is relatively compact, but Windows applications tend to be space hogs. I booted from the Windows CD (F12 at the BIOS splash screen) and created and formatted the necessary partition. Then I ran Windows to install drivers and essential applications. I also used the Disk Management utility to create an extended partition with one 30.0GB FAT32 logical drive and roughly 4.5GB of unpartitioned space. It was time to install Ubuntu Linux 5.04, my weapon of choice. I booted from the Ubuntu CD and ran the installer with the default options. Surprise! The installer seems to have detected all the hardware without my help. That's quite a relief.

In our next episode, I will attempt to get this battle station fully armed and operational.

No comments: