Aug 27, 2011

Complete Slackware Netbook Install Guide.

Slackware Netbook Install Guide For this guide I used a HP Mini 210HD Netbook, However this should apply to the majority of the netbooks out on the market right now. I’m assuming you know how to do a console based linux install & know how to partition a drive using fdisk/cfdisk. If not then you may want to read the man pages, Once you boot up the Slackware install type;
man fdisk
man cfdisk
However, I will give some guidance at my suggested partitioning scheme for netbooks.
The installation system was a HP Mini 210HD with the following specs;
Intel Atom N450 (Dualcore x64)
2GB of system RAM
160GB Sata HDD
Intel audio/video (Works out of the box)
Broadcom STA Wireless Chip (Requires configuration)
Synaptics Touchpad (Requires configuration)
Begin by getting a Slackware x86 (CD1) ISO from http://slackware.com/getslack – After that, Head on over to http://unetbootin.sourceforge.net/ and download unetbootin so you can burn the ISO to a USB Stick or a SD Card (The burning process is self explanatory)
Once you have a USB Stick or SD Card with Slackware (CD 1) on it you’re going to reboot your system. Once you’re prompted with the Slackware boot screen, Press TAB to give boot options. Once you’re greeted with the  boot option screen, Append;
-noudev
To the kernel of your choice, I use SMP for my Multiprocessor CPU (You may want to do the same if you run the Atom N450 CPU to take advantage of the second core)
After the boot process is complete you will be greeted with a login prompt, Login as root. Now you want to begin partitioning your drive, Start by typing in;
cfdisk /dev/sda
And then choose your drive layout, My suggested layout for Netbooks is 10gb for / & the rest for /home. I personally run a swapless install, However if you run resource intensive application your going to want swap. And remember to set / bootable!
Then begin the Slackware install by typing;
setup
Then proceed to “ADDSWAP” if you have a swap partition or “TARGET” if your running a swapless install. When installing Slackware on a Netbook I like to choose ReiserFS, ReiserFS is light on system resources and is pretty quick/responsive on my system.
Once your done partitioning your drive, Select Network install (You will need a LAN connection for this, Wireless setup will be after the complete system is installed) and pick the nearest mirror to you (You can find them at http://slackware.com/getslack).
For package series, I use;
a The A (base) package series.
ap The AP (applications) package series.
d The D (development) package series.
e The E (GNU Emacs) package series.
f The F (FAQ/Documentation) package series.
k The K (kernel source) package series.
l The L (libraries) package series.
n The N (networking) package series.
x The X (X Window System) package series.
xap The XAP (X applications) package series.
After that, Select Full for the prompting mode screen. And your system will begin installation. Once that is complete, Continue on through the install. I usually disregard the USB Boot disk and move onto the LILO install. Do a simple lilo install, Unless you need anything special added. Select yes to load the gpm mouse service. Continue on to the network configuration and fill out your network information and select DHCP. Now continue onto Startup Services, For my startup services I only use;
rc.syslog
rc.messagebus
rc.inetd
rc.hald
Then setup your time zone, Select your preferred window manager (I prefer XFCE, It’s lightweight and provides some nice eye candy). Then select your root password. The installation is now complete, Exit back into the console and type;
reboot
When you reboot, Leave your installation media in (USB Drive or SD Card) and startup the Slackware installation again like before with appending;
-noudev
To your kernel choice. And then login as root and type in;
mount /dev/sda1 /mnt
vi /mnt/etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf
and add to blacklist;
blacklist ssb
blacklist b43
Save the file and reboot the computer without the (USB Drive or SD Card in) After the system boots up, You should be greeted with a login console. Login as root and then type;
adduser
And then setup your new user information (only use root for system maintenance) After you are done with that, You need to log out of root and login as your user, So type in;
exit
And then log in as your normal user. After your logged in as normal user type in
startx
After xorg starts up may start to notice that your touchpad is acting all funky and the buttons don’t work. This is a easy fix, Start by opening up a terminal window and typing in;
su (and then enter your root password)
echo options psmouse proto=exps > /etc/modprobe.d/psmouse.conf
reboot
After you have rebooted your system, log back in again as your normal user. Now we need to get your wireless up and running. The following is for a Broadcom chip, However you should take the same approach for other chipset using the command below, But with your chipsets driver. For the Broadcom STA chipset head on over to; http://www.broadcom.com/support/802.11/linux_sta.php and download the x86 driver, Once you have it downloaded open up a terminal and;
su
tar -zxvf hybrid-portsrc_x86-32_v5.60.246.6.tar.gz
make clean
make
modprobe lib80211
insmod wl.ko
cp wl.ko /lib/modules/2.6.33.4-smp/kernel/drivers/net/wireless
depmod -a
echo modprobe wl >> /etc/rc.local
Now you need to connect to a wireless network, Keep that terminal window open and now type;
ifconfig eth1 down
iwconfig eth1 essid <essid>
iwconfig eth1 key <key>
ifconfig eth1 up
To speed up the process of connecting to a wireless network you can use my wireless bash script below, Open up a console and type in;
jed home-wifi.sh
And this will open jed, Then you want to type into jed;
#!/bin/bash
insmod /lib/modules/2.6.33.4/kernel/drivers/net/wireless/wl.ko
ifconfig eth1 down
iwconfig eth1 essid <your network name>
iwconfig eth1 key <your network key>
ifconfig eth1 up
dhclient eth1
# end
Now save the file and type;
su
chmod u+x home-wifi.sh
cp home-wifi.sh /usr/bin
Now when you want to connect to your wireless connection all you have to do is;
su home-wifi.sh
You should now have a fully functional Slackware installation. Happy Slacking!