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1.  System Logger

Some tools are missing from the stage3 archive because several packages provide the same functionality. It is now up to you to choose which ones you want to install.

The first tool you need to decide on has to provide logging facilities for your system. Unix and Linux have an excellent history of logging capabilities -- if you want you can log everything that happens on your system in logfiles. This happens through the system logger.

Gentoo offers several system loggers to choose from. There are sysklogd, which is the traditional set of system logging daemons, syslog-ng, an advanced system logger, and metalog which is a highly-configurable system logger. Others might be available through Portage as well - our number of available packages increases on a daily basis.

If you plan on using sysklogd or syslog-ng you might want to install logrotate afterwards as those system loggers don't provide any rotation mechanism for the log files.

To install the system logger of your choice, emerge it and have it added to the default runlevel using rc-update. The following example installs syslog-ng. Of course substitute with your system logger:

Code Listing 1.1: Installing a system logger

# emerge syslog-ng
# rc-update add syslog-ng default

1.  Optional: Cron Daemon

Next is the cron daemon. Although it is optional and not required for your system, it is wise to install one. But what is a cron daemon? A cron daemon executes scheduled commands. It is very handy if you need to execute some command regularly (for instance daily, weekly or monthly).

Gentoo offers several possible cron daemons, including bcron, dcron, fcron and cronie. Installing one of them is similar to installing a system logger. However, dcron and fcron require an extra configuration command, namely crontab /etc/crontab. If you don't know what to choose, use cronie.

Code Listing 1.1: Installing a cron daemon

# emerge cronie
# rc-update add cronie default
(Only if you have chosen dcron or fcron) # crontab /etc/crontab

1.  Optional: File Indexing

If you want to index your system's files so you are able to quickly locate them using the locate tool, you need to install sys-apps/mlocate.

Code Listing 1.1: Installing mlocate

# emerge mlocate

1.  Optional: Remote Access

If you need to access your system remotely after installation, don't forget to add sshd to the default runlevel:

Code Listing 1.1: Adding sshd to the default runlevel

# rc-update add sshd default

If you need serial console access (which is possible in case of remote servers), you might need to uncomment the serial console section in /etc/inittab if it has not been done already automatically.

Code Listing 1.1: Editing /etc/inittab

# nano -w /etc/inittab

The following excerpt shows the uncommented section:

Code Listing 1.1: Uncommenting serial consoles in inittab

# SERIAL CONSOLES
s0:12345:respawn:/sbin/agetty 9600 ttyS0 vt100
s1:12345:respawn:/sbin/agetty 9600 ttyS1 vt100

1.  File System Tools

Depending on what file systems you are using, you need to install the necessary file system utilities (for checking the filesystem integrity, creating additional file systems etc.). Please note that tools for managing ext2, ext3 or ext4 filesystems (e2fsprogs) are already installed as a part of the system.

The following table lists the tools you need to install if you use a certain file system:

File System Tool Install Command
XFS xfsprogs emerge xfsprogs
ReiserFS reiserfsprogs emerge reiserfsprogs
JFS jfsutils emerge jfsutils

Optional: RAID utilities for IBM hardware

If you are using SCSI RAID on a POWER5-based system, you should consider installing the iprutils which will allow you to work with the RAID disk array, get status on the disks in the arrays, and update microcode among other functions.

Code Listing 1.1: Installing iprutils

# emerge iprutils

1.  Networking Tools

If you don't require any additional networking-related tools (such as ppp or a dhcp client) continue with (Configuring the Bootloader).

Optional: Installing a DHCP Client

If you require Gentoo to automatically obtain an IP address for your network interface(s), you need to install dhcpcd (or any other DHCP client -- see (Modular Networking) for a list of available DHCP clients). If you don't do this now, you might not be able to connect to the internet after the installation.

Code Listing 1.1: Installing dhcpcd

# emerge dhcpcd

Optional: Installing a PPPoE Client

If you need ppp to connect to the net, you need to install it.

Code Listing 1.1: Installing ppp

# emerge ppp

Now continue with (Configuring the Bootloader).

Page updated December 16, 2013

Summary: In this chapter we help you choose and install some important tools.

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