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4. Actual Experiences - Adding linux to New Computer Preloaded with Windows 98

Nancy is unfamiliar with keeping a log, so Tom prepared it for her as he unboxed and assembled her new computer. tom also knows that it is far easier to remove the computer case once and record all the model numbers, chipsets, and model types than it is to later open the case to get a single model number or to guess the information that will be later needed. During the computer service life, only 10% of the numbers collected will ever be used, but there is no easy way to predict which 10%.

The following is an extract from Nancy's log. Identidation numbers have been changed and some irrelevant data has been removed. Most of the data came from the invoice that accomapanied the computer and the specifications [Start\Run...\] Open: c:\DELL\DOCS\EDOCS.EXE [OK] that were provided on the computer.

4.1. Configuration

A hardcopy of critical portions of this information, master disks, and backup disks is kept in a white binder, located physically close to this host, labelled Nancy System Administration Log.

4.1.1. Hardware

Table 9. Hardware

DateBay or SlotContents
1999-10-21Primary Hard Disk BayHard Disk
1999-10-21Secondary Hard Disk Bayempty
1999-10-21Diskette Drive BayFloppy Disk
1999-10-21Drive Cage Top 5.25" BayCD Writer
1999-10-21Drive Cage Bottom 5.25" Bayempty
1999-10-21Drive Cage Top 3.5" Bayempty
1999-10-21Drive Cage Bottom 3.5" Bayempty
1999-10-21Dimm Socket Bank 0RAM
1999-10-21Dimm Socket Bank 1empty
1999-10-21Dirmm Socket Bank 2empty
1999-10-21Primary EIDE BusHard Disk
1999-10-21Secondary EIDE BusCD Writer
1999-10-21ISA Expansion Slotempty
1999-10-21PCI Expansion Slot 1empty
1999-10-21PCI Expansion Slot 2Modem
1999-10-21PCI Expansion Slot 3empty
1999-10-21PCI Expansion Slot 4Sound
1999-10-21PCI Expansion Slot 5empty
1999-10-21AGP PortGraphics

4.1.2. Components

Table 10. Components

Mfr Dell  
Model Dimension XPS Txxx  
Mfr Date mmddyy  
P/N 01968D Rev A04  
S/N nnnaa  
DP/N 000338D Rev A00  
DS/N xxxxx-xxx-xxxx  
FCC Class B
1999-10-21Dell Dimension XPS Txxx Reference and Troubleshooting Guide
Mfr Dell
Model MMS
P/N 8868D Rev. A01
1999-10-21Central Procssing Unit
procssor: 0  
vendor_id: GenuineIntel  
cpu family: 6 (Pentium III)  
model: 7  
model name: 00/07  
stepping: 3  
cpu MHZ: 448.971025  
cache size: 512 KB  
fdiv_bug: no  
hlt_bug: no  
sep_fug: no  
f00f_bug: no  
coma_bug: no  
fpu: yes  
fpu_exception: yes  
cpuid level: 2  
wp: yes  
flags: fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 sep mtrr pge mca
cmov pat  
bogomips: 447.28  
FCC Class B
1999-10-21System Battery
CR2032 3.0V
1999-10-21System Board
DP/N AA722396-109 Rev. A01
S/N xxxxxxxx-xxxxx-xxx-xxxx
FCC Class B
1999-10-21Hard Disk
Primary Hard Disk Bay  
Primary EIDE Bus  
FCC Class B  

Capacity 13.6 GB  
RPM 7200RPM  
LBA 26.712.000 SECTORS  
CYL 1661  

Mfr IBM Disk Storage Products KFT.  
Model DPTA-371360 IDE/ATA  
MLC F42312  
P/N 31L9151  
DP/N 0003570T-47710-9A2-31TJ  
Rev A00
1999-10-21Floppy Disk
Diskette Drive Bay
FCC Class B

Mfr Sony
Model MPF920
S/N xxxxxxxx
DP/N 0003884D Rev A00
DS/N xxxxx-xxx-xxxx
1999-10-21CD Writer
Drive Cage Top "5.25" Bay  
Secondary EIDE Bus  
FCC Class B  

 R Audio Out  
 L Audio Out  
 CSEL (closed)  
 SLAVE (open)  
 MASTER (open)  
 ATAPI Cable (40-pin keyed)  
 Power Supply (IBM 4-pin)  

CDR 4x  
CDRW 4x  
Read 24x  

Mfr Sony  
M/N CRX100E  
S/N xxxxxx  
DP/N 0002064P Rev A00  
DS/N xxxxx-xxx-xxxx
Dimm Socket Bank 0
FCC Class B  

16Mx 64 MB SDRAM  

Mfr Toshiba  
M/N THMY6416H1EG-A0  
S/N xxxxxx/xxxxxxx
PCI Expansion Slot 2  
J8 -> Sound Telephone Audio Out  
FCC Class B  

See CD 3Com U.S.Robotics  
Modem CD-ROM  

USRobotics V.90/56K  
Model 0727  
Mfr 3Com  
Product 3CP3298-DEL  
SN xxxxxxxxxxxx  
DP/N 00046XVP Rev A00  
DS/N xxxxx-xxx-xxxx
Montego II  
PCI Expansion Slot 4  
CD IN -> CD Writer Audio Out  
TAO -> Modem J8  
FCC Class B  

Mfr Turtle Beach  
Model A3D 320V  
DP/N 0005931D Rev A00  
DS/N xxxxx-xxx-xxxx
AGP Port  
FCC Class B  

Mfr ATI Technologies Inc  
P/N 1024980311010171  
S/N xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.  
DP/N 0000320D Rev A00  
DS/N xxxxx-xxx-xxxx
1999-10-21Power Supply
FCC Class B
DP/N 0009228C Rev N02
DS/N xxxxx-xxx-xxxx
FCC Class B  

17" (15.3" visible)  
Color 1024x768  
See CD Displays by Dell  
Ultrascan P780 Color Monitor  

Mfr Dell Computer, Inc.  
Model UltraScan P780  
P/N 6271R  
S/N xxxxxxxxxxx
Right Analog Input -> Sound ((( )))  
FCC Class B  

Mfr Harmon/Kardon  
Right M/N HK195  
Right P/N 3862A201  
Right DP/N ZL001-98U Rev B  
Right DS/N xxxxx-xx  
Left M/N HK195  
Left DP/N ZL001-98URev B  
Left DS/N xx-xx  
Adapter M/N A41411C  
Adapter P/N HK195-01T  
Adapter Input 60Hz 22W  
Adapter Output 15VAC 1.1A
PS/2 Keyboard Connector
FCC Class B

Mfr Dell
DP/N 0004939R Rev A00
DS/N xxxxx-xxx-xxxx
MS IntelliMouse  
PS/2 Mouse Connector  
FCC Class B  

Mfr Microsoft Inc.  
Model IntelliMouse 1.1A PS/2  
S/N xxxxxxxxx  
DP/N 03235E Rev A00
-> Sound Mic In
FCC Class B

4.1.3. BIOS

Table 11. BIOS

1999-10-21Setup ProcedureRestart When Dell splash screen appears, [del] Dell Dimension XPS T450 Setup
1999-10-21Main\BIOS VersionA05
1999-10-21Main\Processor TypePentium(R) III
1999-10-21Main\processor Speed450 MHz
1999-10-21Main\Cache RAM512KB
1999-10-21Main\Service Tagzzzzz
1999-10-21Main\System memory128 MB
1999-10-21Main\L2 Cache ECC SupportAuto
1999-10-21Advanced\Peripheral Configuration\Plug & Play O/SNo
1999-10-21Advanced\Peripheral Configuration\Reset Configuration DataNo
1999-10-21Advanced\Peripheral Configuration\NumLockAuto
1999-10-21Advanced\Peripheral Configuration\Serial Port AAuto
1999-10-21Advanced\Peripheral Configuration\Parallel PortAuto
1999-10-21Advanced\Peripheral Configuration\ModeECP
1999-10-21Advanced\Peripheral Configuration\Legacy USB SupportEnabled
1999-10-21Advanced\IDE Configuration\IDE ControllerBoth
1999-10-21Advanced\IDE Configuration\Primary IDE MasterIBM-DPTA-371360-(PM)
1999-10-21Advanced\IDE Configuration\Primary IDE SlaveNone
1999-10-21Advanced\IDE Configuration\Secondary IDE MasterCD-RW CRX100E- (SM)
1999-10-21Advanced\IDE Configuration\Secondary IDE SlaveNone
1999-10-21Advanced\Diskette Options\Diskette ControllerEnabled
1999-10-21Advanced\Diskette Options\Diskette A1.44/1.25 MB 3.5"
1999-10-21Advanced\Diskette Options\Diskette Write ProtectSpace Available
1999-10-21Advanced\DMI Event Logging\Event log validityValid
1999-10-21Advanced\DMI Event Logging\View DMI event logNo unread events
1999-10-21Advanced\DMI Event Logging\Clear all DMI event logsNo
1999-10-21Advanced\DMI Event Logging\DMI event loggingEnabled
1999-10-21Advanced\DMI Event Logging\Mark DMI events as readNo unread events
1999-10-21Advanced\Video Configuration\ISA Palette SnoopingDisabled
1999-10-21Advanced\Video Configuration\AGP Aperature Size64MB
1999-10-21Advanced\Video Configuration\Default Primary Video AdapterAGP
1999-10-21Advanced\Resource Configuration\C800-CBFFAvailable
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\CC00-CFFFAvailable
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\4000-43FFAvailable
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\4400-47FFAvailable
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\4800-4BFFAvailable
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\4C00-4FFFAvailable
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\IRQ 3Available
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\IRQ 4Available
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\IRQ 5Reserved
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\IRQ 7Available
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\IRQ 10Available
1999-10-21Advanced\Recource Configuration\IRQ 11Available
1999-10-21Power\Power ManagementEnabled
1999-10-21Power\Inactivity TimerOff
1999-10-21Power\Hard DriveEnabled
1999-10-21Power\VESA Video Power DownStandby
1999-10-21Boot\Boot-time Diagnostic ScreenDisabled
1999-10-21Boot\QuickBoot ModeDisabled
1999-10-21Boot\First Boot DeviceRemovable Devices
1999-10-21Boot\Second Boot Device (obsolete)Hard Disk
1999-10-21Boot\Second Boot DeviceATAPI CD-ROM Driv
1999-10-21Boot\Third Boot Device (obsolete)ATAPI CD-ROM Driv
1999-10-21Boot\Third Boot DeviceHard Disk
1999-10-21Boot\Fourth Boot DeviceNetwork Drive
1999-10-21Boot\Hard Drive\1IBM-DPTA-371360-(PM)
1999-10-21Boot\Hard Drive\2Bootable Add-In Card
1999-10-21Boot\Removable Devices\1Legacy Floppy Drive

4.1.4. Firmware

Table 12. Firmware

1999-10-21Partition Table
tomsrtbt-1.6.335 (linux-2.0.35)  
fdisk> p  
 Disk /dev/hda: 255 heads, 63 sectors, 1024 cylinders  
 Units = cylinders of 16085 * 512 bytes  

 Drive     Boot Start   End    Blocks  Id  System  
 /dev/hda1  *       1  1662  13349983+ 0c  Win95 FAT32

Partition has different physical/logical endings  
phys = (1022, 254, 63)  logical = (1661, 254, 63)
1999-10-22Partition Table
Windows98 Startup Disk +fips.exe  
A:\> fips  
(Ignore warning about physical != logical length)  
Save current partition info: yes  
(saved as rootboot.000)  
New partition start: 501  

tomsrtbt-1.6.335 (linux-2.0.35)  
bash>/bin/fdisk -v  
fips Version 2.8  
fdisk> p  
Disk /dev/hda: 255 heads, 63 sectors, 1661 cylinders  
Units = cylinders of 16085 * 512 bytes  

  Drive  Boot  Start  End    Blocks   Id  System  
/dev/hda1 *        1   501   402451+  0c  Win95 FAT32 (LBA)  
/dev/hda2        502  1002   402482   83  Linux Native  
/dev/hda3       1003  1011    72292   82  Linux Swap  
/dev/hda4       1012  1661  5221125   83  Linux Native
1999-10-21Windows Operating System

Language English (United States)  
Keyboard United States 101  
First and Middle Jo'an K.  
Last Name Meier  
Country Code United States of America  
Area Code 336  
Access Code No  
Touch Tone Yes  
Time Zone (GMT-05:00) United States Eastern  
Daylight Savings Time Automatic  
Mfr Microsoft  
Model Windows98 2nd Ed  
Product Key G74XD-KMV7J-XJC3X-PYBG6-DHPP6  
S/N xxxxxxxxxx  
DP/N 08001T Rev. A00
1999-11-03linux Operating System

reboot CDROM1  
linuxrc v0.91 (kernel 2.2.10)  

linuxrc> ... language ... English  
... display ...? Color display  
... keyboard ... English (US)  
Main menu  
  System Information  
    Harddisks / CD-ROMS  
      (Hard Disk and CD-ROM found)  
      (no bugs)  
  Start Installation / System  
    Start Installation  
      Source: CD-ROM  

Yast v1. 01  
 Install Linux from scratch  
   ... format ... yes  
  [PARTITION HARDDRIVES/Do not Partition]  
   /dev/hda1     no    vfat /WinC Win95 FAT32  
   /dev/hda2 ... check ext2 /     Linux  
   /dev/hda4     no    vfat /WinD Win95 FAT32  
   Create/Change Configuration  
   Xserver = svga (otherwise unrecognized)  
  [SELECT KERNEL/Standard (E)IDE Kernel]
1999-11-05Root password
In sealed envelope in hardcopy log.
1999-11-05X11 mouse
bash> yast 
[System Administration/X86 Configuration/SaX] 
  Vendor: Microsoft 
  Name: Intellimouse PS/2 
  Port: PS/2 
  Buttons: 3 
   Protocol: IMPS/2 
   Device: /dev/psaux 
1999-11-05X11 keyboard
bash> yast 
[System Administration/X86 Configuration/SaX] 
  Model: Dell 101-key PC 
  Language: U.S. English 
1999-11-05X11 Graphics Card
bash> yast 
[System Administration/X86 Configuration/SaX] 
  Vendor: ATI 
  Model: XPERT98 
   Server: XF86_mach64 
   Memory: 8192k 
   DAC: 207 

Hardware Clock set to local time
Hostname: xxxxxxx

No network card
Modem will be used  

[SENDMAIL CONFIGRUATION/... temporary connection ...]
1999-11-05Boot Manager

Windows /dev/hda1  
SuSE /dev/hda2 /boot/vmlinuz
1999-10-21Partition 1 Filesystem
1999-11-02Partition 2 Filesystem
omsrtbt-1.6.335 (linux-2.0.35)
bash> /bin/mke2fs -c /dev/hda2
bash> /bin/e2fsck /dev/hda2
1999-11-02Partition 3 Filesystem
tomsrtbt-1.6.335 (linux-2.0.35)
bash> /bin/mkswap -c /dev/hda3
1999-10-21Partition 4 Filesystem

[[My Computer]] {(D:)} [Format ...] [Format type\Full] [Start] 


ScanDisk reported no errors in a thorough test.

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