Woo hoo!

Tony Karakashian tonyk at monstertruck.cc
Fri Jun 9 21:58:31 PDT 2000

Well, just finished tonight, and had my first successful boot.  Some errors
related to modules, but that's got to do with the fact that I started with a
Mandrake install.  They like to append "-2.2.14-MDK" to every damn thing.
So, of course, it's looking for modules.conf-2.2.14-MDK...easy enough to
fix, it's just too late to do it now. :)

Gerard, just wanted to say thanks.  You've done an excellent and
well-written job.  A little background on myself:  I'm a Windows guru.
(Yup, it IS a possible calling in life. :) Flames aside, I happen to love
Windows.  It's crashed about as often as any Linux install has, and I've got
7 servers that are up over 2 years now.  My W2K workstation here is up
pretty much 24x7, and I honestly don't remember the last time it's been
rebooted.  Of course, I don't use Dells or Gateways, so since I don't use
crappy hardware, I don't have problems. :)

But, I like to play.  A while back, I picked up a copy of Linux, and to date
when I started, the kernel version was .98plsomethingoranother.  Anyway, at
the time I said, "Wow, this IS fast....but there's nothing I can do with
it..."  So, it went on the shelf.  Over the years, I've followed the
progress, and have run at least one Linux box at least once a year since.
Each time I think, "Wow, this is getting closer....but now it's getting
slower".  So, it goes back on the shelf again.  But, that's changed now.
Thanks to you Gerard, I can now make a distro that isn't bloated to the
gills like a Redhat or Mandrake, but will do all I can make it do.  (The
main reason I started this undertaking is play with routing, but couldn't
get enough useful stuff of a main-line distro to fit on the 400M drive I
allocated for it...)

Is it there enough yet that I can use it full time?  Not until USB support
is there 100%, but it's very, very close.  And having my own distro brings
it a lot closer.

Now, since you're working on a final copy of the book, I'd like to offer
some suggestions:

1.  Take input from everyone, but ultimately do what you want.  It's your
book.  I'm going to use what I ended up with as a base image for multiple
projects.  That router I'm working on is the first one, but I'm also going
to replace that MDK install with this, so I'll need X, but I haven't decided
on XFree or AcceleratedX. You've left that choice up to me, where it
belongs. Where you ended, IMHO, is perfect.  I've learned to fish, so you
don't need to offer tuna salad. :)

2.  A little change to the layout...Make the installing software sections
chapters, and give each package it's own page.  Combine Appendix A with each
install, so one knows at a glance what they're installing, and why.  You
could then have a PPC section at the bottom for any changes those folks need
to make, without having to dedicate a whole section to it.  (BTW, a little
more description than, "This is the groff package, it installs the groff
utilities ;)

3.  A little explanation as to the meaning of "--prefix=/usr" and why you
use it on some packages, and not others.

4.  Some sample answers and suggestions for the perl config.  I'm not a
programmer, and some of that stuff was over my head.  I let it use the hints
defaults, but I'dve liked to known what I was defaulting.

5.  A slight change to the download section:  Group all the gnu stuff, and
do it alphabetically.

6.  An explanation on how to get it to it's own drive.  As you might recall,
I started this project on a seperate hard drive, but had problems booting.
I switched it to a partition on the primary, and also switched to book
2.3.4.  Now, I need to get it to that other drive.  I know I can't just
"cp -r *".  I'm sure there's a switch or two that needs to be in there.

7.  Someone on the list gave a find command that would strip all the
binaries on the drive of debug symbols.  Add that so's to clean up some
space when done.

All the above aren't critisms, just slight issues I had with it.  I, like
I'm sure most here, used this primarily as a learning experience, and would
like to take away even more.

Thanks again,


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