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2. Booting the Universal Installation CD
2.a. Hardware Requirements
Before we start, we first list what hardware requirements you need to
successfully install Gentoo on your box.
||Any PowerPC64 CPU
IBM RS/6000s, Power Macintosh G5, iMac G5, IBP pSeries and IBM OpenPower
||1.5 GB (excluding swap space)
||At least 256 MB
For a full list of supported systems, please go to
2.b. The Gentoo Universal Installation CD
Gentoo Linux can be installed using a stage3 tarball file.
Such a tarball is an archive that contains a minimal environment from
which you can successfully install Gentoo Linux onto your system.
Installations using a stage1 or stage2 tarball file are not documented in the
Gentoo Handbook - please read the Gentoo
FAQ on these matters.
Gentoo Universal Installation CD
An Installation CD is a bootable medium which contains a self-sustained Gentoo
environment. It allows you to boot Linux from the CD. During the boot process
your hardware is detected and the appropriate drivers are loaded. The Gentoo
Installation CDs are maintained by Gentoo developers.
There currently are two Installation CDs available:
The Universal Installation CD contains everything you need to install
Gentoo. It provides stage3 files for common architectures, source code
for the extra applications you need to choose from and, of course, the
installation instructions for your architecture.
The Minimal Installation CD contains only a minimal environment that allows
you to boot up and configure your network so you can connect to the
Internet. It does not contain any additional files and cannot be used
during the current installation approach.
Gentoo also provides a Package CD. This is not an Installation CD but an
additional resource that you can exploit during the installation of your Gentoo
system. It contains prebuilt packages (also known as the GRP set) that allow
you to easily and quickly install additional applications immediately after the
Gentoo installation and right before you update your Portage tree.
The use of the Package CD is covered later in this document.
2.c. Download, Burn and Boot a Gentoo Installation CD
Downloading and Burning the Installation CDs
You can download the Universal Installation CD (and, if you want to, the
Packages CD as well) from one of our mirrors. The Installation CDs are located
in the releases/ppc64/2005.1-r1/installcd directory;
the Package CDs are located in the releases/ppc64/2005.1/packagecd
Inside those directories you'll find ISO-files. Those are full CD images which
you can write on a CD-R.
After downloading the file, you can verify its integrity to see if it is
corrupted or not:
You can check its MD5 checksum and compare it with the MD5 checksum we
provide (for instance with the md5sum tool under Linux/Unix or
md5sum for Windows). How
to verify MD5 checksums with Mac OS X is described in the Gentoo PPC FAQ.
You can verify the cryptographic signature that we provide. You need to
obtain the public key we use (0x17072058) before you proceed though.
To fetch our public key using the GnuPG application, run the following command:
Code Listing 3.1: Obtaining the public key
$ gpg --keyserver subkeys.pgp.net --recv-keys 0x17072058
Now verify the signature:
Code Listing 3.2: Verify the cryptographic signature
$ gpg --verify <signature file> <downloaded iso>
To burn the downloaded ISO(s), you have to select raw-burning. How you
do this is highly program-dependent. We will discuss cdrecord and
K3B here; more information can be found in our Gentoo FAQ.
With cdrecord, you simply type cdrecord dev=/dev/hdc <downloaded iso
file> (replace /dev/hdc with your CD-RW drive's device
With K3B, select Tools > CD > Burn Image. Then
you can locate your ISO file within the 'Image to Burn' area. Finally click
Booting the Installation CD on an Apple
Place the Installation CD in the CD-ROM and reboot the system. Hold down the
'C' key at bootup. You will be greeted by a friendly welcome message and a
boot: prompt at the bottom of the screen.
You are also able to tweak some kernel options at this prompt. The following
table lists the available boot options you can add:
This option takes one of the following vendor-specific tags:
radeonfb, rivafb, atyfb, aty128 or
ofonly. You can follow this tag with the resolution and refreshrate
you want to use. For instance video=radeonfb:1280x1024@75. If you are
uncertain what to choose, ofonly will most certainly work.
Disables level 3 cache on some powerbooks (needed for at least the 17'')
Enables verbose booting, spawns an initrd shell that can be used to debug
the Installation CD
Wait X seconds before continuing; this can be needed by some very old SCSI
CD-ROMs which don't speed up the CD quick enough
Boot from a different device
At this prompt, hit enter, and a complete Gentoo Linux environment will be
loaded from the CD. Continue with And When You're
Booting the Installation CD on an IBM pSeries
For pSeries boxes, sometimes the cds might not autoboot. You might have
to set up your cdrom as a bootable device in the multi-boot menu. (F1 at
startup) The other option is to jump into OF and do it from there:
1) Boot into OF (this is 8 from the serial cons or F8 from a graphics
cons, start hitting the key when you see the keyboard mouse etc etc
2) run the command 0> boot cdrom:1,yaboot
3) stand back and enjoy!
And When You're Booted...
You will be greeted by a root ("#") prompt on the current console. You can also
switch to other consoles by pressing Alt-fn-F2, Alt-fn-F3 and Alt-fn-F4. Get
back to the one you started on by pressing Alt-fn-F1.
If you are installing Gentoo on a system with a non-US keyboard, use
loadkeys to load the keymap for your keyboard. To list the available
keymaps, execute ls /usr/share/keymaps/i386.
Code Listing 3.3: Listing available keymaps
# ls /usr/share/keymaps/i386
Now load the keymap of your choice:
Code Listing 3.4: Loading a keymap
# loadkeys be-latin1
Now continue with Extra Hardware Configuration.
Extra Hardware Configuration
When the Installation CD boots, it tries to detect all your hardware devices and
loads the appropriate kernel modules to support your hardware. In the
vast majority of cases, it does a very good job. However, in some cases it may
not auto-load the kernel
modules you need. If the PCI auto-detection missed some of your system's
hardware, you will have to load the appropriate kernel modules manually.
In the next example we try to load the 8139too module (support for
certain kinds of network interfaces):
Code Listing 3.5: Loading kernel modules
# modprobe 8139too
Optional: Tweaking Hard Disk Performance
If you are an advanced user, you might want to tweak the IDE hard disk
performance using hdparm. With the -tT options you can
test the performance of your disk (execute it several times to get a
more precise impression):
Code Listing 3.6: Testing disk performance
# hdparm -tT /dev/hda
To tweak, you can use any of the following examples (or experiment
yourself) which use /dev/hda as disk (substitute with your
Code Listing 3.7: Tweaking hard disk performance
# hdparm -d 1 /dev/hda
# hdparm -d 1 -A 1 -m 16 -u 1 -a 64 /dev/hda
Optional: User Accounts
If you plan on giving other people access to your installation
environment or you want to chat using irssi without root privileges (for
security reasons), you need to create the necessary user accounts and change
the root password.
To change the root password, use the passwd utility:
Code Listing 3.8: Changing the root password
To create a user account, we first enter their credentials, followed by
its password. We use useradd and passwd for these tasks.
In the next example, we create a user called "john".
Code Listing 3.9: Creating a user account
# useradd -m -G users john
# passwd john
You can change your user id from root to the newly created user by using
Code Listing 3.10: Changing user id
# su - john
Optional: Viewing Documentation while Installing
If you want to view the Gentoo Handbook during the installation, make sure you
have created a user account (see Optional: User
Accounts). Then press Alt-F2 to go to a new terminal and log in.
If you want to view the documentation on the CD you can immediately run
links2 to read it:
Code Listing 3.11: Viewing the on-CD documentation
# links2 /mnt/cdrom/docs/handbook/html/index.html
However, it is preferred that you use the online Gentoo Handbook as it will be
more recent than the one provided on the CD.
Code Listing 3.12: Viewing the Online Documentation
# links2 http://www.gentoo.org/doc/en/handbook/handbook-ppc64.xml
You can go back to your original terminal by pressing Alt-F1.
Optional: Starting the SSH Daemon
If you want to allow other users to access your computer during the
Gentoo installation (perhaps because those users are going to help you
install Gentoo, or even do it for you), you need to create a user
account for them and perhaps even provide them with your root password
(only do that if you fully trust that user).
To fire up the SSH daemon, execute the following command:
Code Listing 3.13: Starting the SSH daemon
# /etc/init.d/sshd start
To be able to use sshd, you first need to set up your networking. Continue with
the chapter on Configuring your Network.
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