Feedback from new user - Install problems

Help with issues regarding installation of Debian

Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby spechter » 2017-09-08 12:18

Not whinging, just communicating my new user experience moving over from Arch, if anyone is listening.

1) I had a warning about non-free LAN drivers during install. It clearly told me what to do, but didn't clearly explain the consequences of not doing it. It's strange that it spent 24 hours downloading software (clearly using my LAN chipset?), only to fail near the end. A retry with zero software packages selected saw it complete instantly, but then panic on the first boot with the missing driver.

1 day wasted.

2) Would be really nice to be able to easily select the size of the root partition. Hard-coded 30GB seems riskily small when some software packages (like Android Dev), are multiple GB, per version. I tried the manual mode, but couldn't find any way to make the swap partition then.

3) I really wish that someone would make a solid distro that just a) Installs easily to a MINIMAL graphical desktop, with absolutely no unnecessary stuff installed, and b) A simple way to install what you want so that you can be finding your feet in the desktop while the optional-extras download. I'd be onto that Distro like a flash. 24 hours to install stuff that I mostly don't want... Talk about wasting time and cluttering my system...

OK, it sounds a lot like whinging doesn't it. Guilty as charged I suppose...

One more try (Downloading the full non-free installer), then Mint it is...
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby RU55EL » 2017-09-08 13:08

You don't seem very happy with Debian. Here are some links that you may find useful:

Debian installation manual

Mint Download

Ubuntu Download

[edit] BunsenLabs install [/edit]
Last edited by RU55EL on 2017-09-08 21:37, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2017-09-08 17:04

spechter wrote:if anyone is listening.

No.

The mailing lists are actually read by the Debian developers but these are the Debian User Forums, sorry if you find the name confusing.

non-free LAN drivers during install

[...]

1 day wasted.

The Debian project has principles to which it adheres [1] and these are considered more important than pandering to entitled idiots who can't be bothered reading the readily available and extensive documentation and instead choose to come here and whine like a spoilt brat.

Would be really nice to be able to easily select the size of the root partition

Prepare the partitions beforehand then.

Mint it is...

Bye :D
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby stevepusser » 2017-09-08 18:53

What, you don't suggest the easier install of Bunsen Labs? Image
The MX Linux repositories: Backports galore! If we don't have something, just ask and we'll try--we like challenges. New packages: AzPainter 2.1.0, Pale Moon 27.5.0, Liquorix kernel 4.12-10, mpv 0.27.0, Kodi 17.3, 0ad 0.0.22, Mesa 13.0.6
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby bryanmc » 2017-09-08 19:27

24 hours to download 4 gigs? Is your ethernet card hooked to a 2400 bps modem?
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby debiman » 2017-09-09 06:57

spechter wrote:I had a warning about non-free LAN drivers during install.

what for a wired connection? that is extremely rare hardware and i bet most of your subsequent problems somehow stem from that.

Would be really nice to be able to easily select the size of the root partition. Hard-coded 30GB seems riskily small
this is NOT hardcoded at all.


I really wish that someone would make a solid distro that just a) Installs easily to a MINIMAL graphical desktop, with absolutely no unnecessary stuff installed
iirc debian installer offers either a full-blown gnome desktop (used to be kde, so be happy :twisted: ), or no desktop.
sorry that your desired middle ground is not present.
but hundreds of derivate distros are waiting to fulfil your needs!

A simple way to install what you want so that you can be finding your feet in the desktop while the optional-extras download. I'd be onto that Distro like a flash.

ok, now you're really just whinging.

but most important, if you really want to bring up the point of your problematic network hardware, you have to reach the actual devs. as HoaS said.
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby spechter » 2017-09-09 10:47

I appreciate the mixture of flames and constructive feedback. Not unexpected of course.

My main point for posting though - If everyone who had problems just never posted, and just moved on (Which is almost the reality actually), then how would the distro ever get better.

I didn't think my NIC hardware was that rare. It's integrated on an ASUS AMD motherboard. Driver stated=rtl8168d-2.fw
My point was not about the inclusion principles.
My point was that it let me progress, spent a LOT of time forging on, only to panic at first boot. (And in fact, it managed to download apps, though slowly, which is very strange given the non-free driver supposedly required for my NIC)

I get about 100Mb down on a good day, so maybe I picked a bad mirror - It seemed to maybe stall badly between each individual package, with the ETA bouncing around wildly? But again, it seems to be very hard for new users to pick a good mirror with no locations or ping times... It looks like my ISP stopped mirroring Debian after version 7. Bummer.

debiman - I know my way around partitioning. If you can find a way to alter the 30GB root partition size in the installer, please educate me. As I mentioned, selecting the manual option in the installer seemed to have no way to make the swap partition - Each manually created partition forced a selection of filesystem type, and swap was not a choice.

I have spent a lot of time browsing distrowatch. Haven't yet found a high-quality distro with the philosophy of a bare-minimum desktop install with simple optional installs. Which flabbergasts me, but must point to my head not being screwed on right.
Have been using Arch for a couple of years, but felt like exploring some potentially greener grass.

Final point - If the developers pay no heed to the User Forum, then I will DEFINITELY be moving on I'd say! If any distro doesn't exist for its users, I don't know why it exists...

Cheers. And thanks again.
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby MALsPa » 2017-09-09 11:25

spechter wrote:Final point - If the developers pay no heed to the User Forum, then I will DEFINITELY be moving on I'd say! If any distro doesn't exist for its users, I don't know why it exists...

Yeah, I agree with this point -- it makes no sense (to me) for Debian developers to "pay no heed" to these forums, especially because if a user goes to the official Support page (https://www.debian.org/support), the following links are found (don't most new Debian users head straight for the forums?):
http://www.debianhelp.org/
http://forums.debian.net/

spechter wrote:3) I really wish that someone would make a solid distro that just a) Installs easily to a MINIMAL graphical desktop, with absolutely no unnecessary stuff installed, and b) A simple way to install what you want so that you can be finding your feet in the desktop while the optional-extras download. I'd be onto that Distro like a flash.

I, too, would love to find something like this.
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby bryanmc » 2017-09-09 12:21

spechter wrote: I know my way around partitioning. If you can find a way to alter the 30GB root partition size in the installer, please educate me.


Simply select manual partitioning instead of automatic.
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby bryanmc » 2017-09-09 14:19

MALsPa wrote:it makes no sense (to me) for Debian developers to "pay no heed" to these forums, especially because if a user goes to the official Support page (https://www.debian.org/support), the following links are found (don't most new Debian users head straight for the forums?):
http://www.debianhelp.org/
http://forums.debian.net/



"debianHELP and Debian User Forums are web portals on which you can discuss Debian-related topics, submit questions about Debian, and have them answered by other users."

Perhaps you missed the bolded part? The devs are on the mailing lists. Easily 75% of the questions / issues posted here are resolved with a search or reading the documentation. Why would the devs need to be active here?
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby spechter » 2017-09-10 01:39

bryanmc wrote:Simply select manual partitioning instead of automatic.


Please read my two posts again. In summary - Tried that, couldn't see a way to make swap.

It's possible I missed something, but I looked pretty hard. Would appreciate confirmed facts as a rebuttal, not theory.
Maybe something is actually broken?
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby GarryRicketson » 2017-09-10 01:57

These kind of things happen when new users do not bother to read anything, especially the documentation.
If one is not technically qualified to install a OS, Debian or any other it is best to either have a qualified technician install , go to wal mart, and buy a PC with the most popular OS pre-installed, or take the time to carefully read all of the available documentation.
https://debian-handbook.info/browse/stable/sect.installation-steps.html
spechter »Would appreciate confirmed facts as a rebuttal, not theory.

From :https://debian-handbook.info/browse/stable/sect.installation-steps.html
The first screen displays the available disks, their partitions, and any possible free space that has not yet been partitioned. You can select each displayed element; pressing the Enter key then gives a list of possible actions.
You can erase all partitions on a disk by selecting it.
When selecting free space on a disk, you can manually create a new partition. You can also do this with guided partitioning, which is an interesting solution for a disk that already contains another operating system, but which you may wish to partition for Linux in a standard manner. See Section 4.2.13.1, “Guided partitioning” for more details on guided partitioning.
----- read it all ---- snip ------
When choosing a partition, you can indicate the manner in which you are going to use it:

format it and include it in the file tree by choosing a mount point;
use it as a swap partition;
make it into a “physical volume for encryption” (to protect the confidentiality of data on certain partitions, see below);
make it a “physical volume for LVM” (this concept is discussed in greater detail later in this chapter);
use it as a RAID device (see later in this chapter);
you can also choose not to use it, and therefore leave it unchanged.

I have never had any problem creating a swap partition when installing Debian,
for example on the server:
Code: Select all
 8:0    0   149G  0 disk
������sda1   8:1    0   145G  0 part /
������sda2   8:2    0     1K  0 part
������sda5   8:5    0     4G  0 part [SWAP]
 

There is plenty of other documentation available on partitioning, if one does a search.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby MALsPa » 2017-09-10 04:09

bryanmc wrote:"debianHELP and Debian User Forums are web portals on which you can discuss Debian-related topics, submit questions about Debian, and have them answered by other users."

Perhaps you missed the bolded part? The devs are on the mailing lists. Easily 75% of the questions / issues posted here are resolved with a search or reading the documentation. Why would the devs need to be active here?

(Sigh.) I know this isn't the way things are done here, but I think it's helpful to users when a distro's devs are active (and respond to users' concerns) at the user forums. We do see this happening with other distros. It never really seems like a positive thing to me when there's a disconnect between the devs and the user forums. Just my observation after having run quite a few different distros over the years.

Anyway, this isn't something that I lose any sleep over; I get by fine by referring to the documentation, and don't generally come to the forums to post questions. I don't have much difficulty getting Debian installed and set up here. And I'm not "moving on" and dumping Debian for another distro; Debian's worked fine for me for years. So, whatever, carry on.
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby debiman » 2017-09-10 10:12

^ fwiw, i think debian got through the last 20 years because devs concentrate on what's really important.
after that they still might pop in here and see what the average user/troll (i'm not excluding myself here) says, but since they are already providing me with the most solid linux distro out there, for free, it would be a more than a little impolite to implicate that that's a must.

spechter wrote:I appreciate the mixture of flames and constructive feedback.
that's a first!
thanks.

I didn't think my NIC hardware was that rare. It's integrated on an ASUS AMD motherboard. Driver stated=rtl8168d-2.fw
My point was not about the inclusion principles.
My point was that it let me progress, spent a LOT of time forging on, only to panic at first boot. (And in fact, it managed to download apps, though slowly, which is very strange given the non-free driver supposedly required for my NIC)
ok.
i see: non-free firmware? right? i think it's unusual for ethernet cards.
anyhow, if you're serious about this you should start providing hard info (command output etc.) instead of fueling the rant.
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Re: Feedback from new user - Install problems

Postby bryanmc » 2017-09-10 12:11

MALsPa wrote:I don't have much difficulty getting Debian installed and set up here. And I'm not "moving on" and dumping Debian for another distro; Debian's worked fine for me for years. So, whatever, carry on.


I never suggested you move on, wrong guy. You say you have run Debian for years and don't have any trouble installing it, yet you don't know how to set up the swap partition? I suppose some folks are so advanced that the really simple beginner stuff confounds them... :?

Anyway, good luck in your quest.
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