Elyssa Installer Problem

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Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby garda on Thu Sep 04, 2008 2:33 pm

I tried to install Elyssa on a friend's AMD box today but couldn't get the installer running. The live CD booted rather smoothly, I could even run a few programs, but the installer took an eternity to start. I only saw the DVD-ROM drive LED blinking and some normal noise coming from the drive, but never saw the installer GUI pop up. I waited about 10 minutes before deciding to give up and took another shot, and then another, but always with no luck.

The disc was the same one I had used to install Mint on my Intel PC (which ran and installed flawlessly on my machine), I even burnt a new disc from the same ISO which had passed md5sum check.

I've searched the forum, and found a topic asking for solution to a similar problem but there's no helpful answer. Here's the URL to the topic:

http://www.linuxmint.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=46&t=16442&p=100260&hilit=installer+won%27t+start#p100260

Could someone please help?
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby Husse on Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:10 am

There is still a small chance that the CD is not OK
Did you check the md5sum and burned as slow as possible?
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby garda on Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:04 am

Husse wrote:There is still a small chance that the CD is not OK
Did you check the md5sum and burned as slow as possible?


Yes, I did. The md5sum check turned out OK, and I burned the second disc at 4x (it's the lowest speed supported by the disc).

Both the first and second discs run fine. I mean, I've used them to install Mint 5 on a few machines without a single glitch on most. When booted on some AMD machines, however, both seem to either run a little slowly or the installer simply wouldn't run at all. By 'some', I mean four AMD-based machines and only on one of them does the installer refuse to run.

All other applications on the live CD runs normally. Some other workarounds that I've tried include booting off the live CD with extra options strings (as instructed in the Wiki) and I've also tried swapping the optical drive of the problem PC's, all to no avail. Another thing I forgot to mention was the CPU is an Athlon XP 1800+ Palomino on top of an ABIT KR7A-133 (VIA KT-266A chipset) motherboard and nothing's overclocked.

I Hope those additional details could help.
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby kirsch92 on Fri Sep 05, 2008 11:56 am

I know this probably isn't very helpful, but I have noticed over the years that some drives just don't like some disks.
I've even had factory music CD's that don't work right in one drive, but do in another.

Even though you swapped out drives, have you tried a different brand of media?
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby Husse on Sat Sep 06, 2008 10:46 am

Yes media can be a problem (all sorts of them :))
Here's a page that discusses problem with the 266A chipset
http://usuario.cicese.mx/~mirsev/Linux/ ... linux.html
This is the only one with problem, am I right?
I don't think you should try the guys solution as it is for a 2.4 kernel, but it clearly indicates that there is a hardware problem
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby garda on Sat Sep 06, 2008 3:25 pm

kirsch92 wrote:I know this probably isn't very helpful

Don't say that. Being a newbie in Linux, I appreciate any sorts of hint. :)
kirsch92 wrote:Even though you swapped out drives, have you tried a different brand of media?

Yes, I did. The first disc was a cheapo CD-R media but the second one was one of those 'costly' Maxell CD-R's. Thanks for your reply.
Husse wrote:This is the only one with problem, am I right?

You're right. This is the only AMD machine on which the installer won't run. On the other three AMD machines I dealt with, the live CD ran a little slowly, although installation completed succesfully.

Thank you for the information, Husse. You've been a great help since the very first day I made the switch to Linux. :D

Still it's a little sad to know that I can't install Elyssa on the AthlonXP machine, though.
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby Husse on Sat Sep 06, 2008 4:32 pm

I've put this in my unsolved list and when there's a little more time I'll look into it
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby kirsch92 on Sun Sep 07, 2008 4:57 pm

My machine is an Athlon XP, Barton 2500+, with a VIA chipset, though its a KT400 and I have no problems with any debian based os's.
My problem is Mandriva, PCLOS and their kind. They always fail at install, who know why, LIVE CD's work just fine.
On the upside, it shortens my list of choices of OS's to a manageable level. :D

Have you tried Ubuntu, to see if it fails at install as well?
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby Husse on Sun Sep 07, 2008 6:25 pm

I think the problems you two have shows the importance of "the right kernel version for you" :)
And of course the kernel has to be a compromise - net everyone can be satisfied
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby garda on Sun Sep 07, 2008 8:36 pm

kirsch92 wrote:Have you tried Ubuntu...?

No, I haven't tried that one. The fact that I'd have to put more effort into installing some basic components (e.g. codecs) just turns me off, not mention I'm bound to a low-speed connection. Hence, I don't think I'll go down that route, at least not now. I have, nonetheless, slapped in Zenwalk 5.2 onto the computer. But that doesn't mean I'm adequately happy with it, for several reasons.

Thanks for the suggestion anyway. :)

Husse wrote:net everyone can be satisfied

Apparently so. :(
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby kirsch92 on Tue Sep 09, 2008 2:32 am

The reason I suggested Ubuntu is to see if maybe it behaved the same way as Mint does on that machine. That may help you narrow the problem down. I would assume if Mint isn't installing, neither would Ubuntu Hardy. Of course a low speed connection changes things. May be best to try and come back when Mint 6 comes out.
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby garda on Thu Sep 25, 2008 8:15 am

Alright, I think I've found a cure to this disease. It's been a couple of days now, but I wasn't into rushing out posting something I was not even sure about thus I decided to take the time to make sure that this workaround really did do the trick. And to be clear, this problem PC has now been happily running Linux Mint 5 Main Rev. 1 since a couple of days ago.

First of all, I must state that I had no idea as to what I was doing. It just came to my mind in a blitz. This may sound rather odd to you, but it did do the trick. I simply swapped the RAM module prior to booting off the live CD; it originally had a modest (i.e. not very popular) brand DDR266 module in the slot which incorporated Infineon chips. I took it out of the slot, and put mine in. The replacement module I used was a Transcend JetRAM DDR400 stick which used Hynix chips. Both of them were of the same capacity (1GB).

I then booted off the live CD, ran the installer (whilst keeping my fingers crossed) :lol: and presto! It completed succesfully. :D I was then greeted by mintAssistant upon first start of the installation. Having toyed around with it for about half an hour, I turned the computer off to put the old stick back in the slot (and took mine out), and see what would happen next. This led me to another surprise: Mint started up flawlessly with the old stick in the slot, as though it had liked the stick in the first place! How weirder could it possibly be? Less than an hour and a few tinkering with some applications later, I officially stated that the PC had been officially Mint-ized.

To make sure that the RAM module really was the culprit, I then tried to run the installer again, with the old stick in the slot. The result was predictable: it wouldn't run. In conclusion, using the old (DDR266, Infineon chips) module kept the installer from running, although the OS itself would run normally with it once installed. I never thought that the installer could be overly sensitive to even the smallest details.

I'm aware that not everybody has spare components lying around the house, but I thought I'd just share the story here anyway.

Edit: I had also upgraded the BIOS to the latest version available at ABIT's site before attempting this silly last resort.

Regards,

Garda.
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Re: Elyssa Installer Problem

Postby Husse on Fri Sep 26, 2008 6:27 am

This illustrates the difficulties in solving a problem remotely. On location I would have done a lot I really can't recommend in the forum as it's read by people of all levels of knowledge
And yes memory can be very kinky
I would suggest a memory test for both modules
And please be very careful not to give electrostatic shocks to the components
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