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Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

For help or questions about 64-bit version of MEPIS, this is the forum to use.
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lucky9
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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#41 Post by lucky9 » Thu Jul 24, 2014 3:52 pm

kmathern is right. A mixed PATA/SATA system can be a problem. joany has dealt with this on her PC, electing to not use GRUB on the MBR.
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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#42 Post by Silent Observer » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:19 pm

kmathern wrote:
asqwerth wrote:Silent Observer, this is probably a silly suggestion you've already tried, but instead of manually editing the menu.lst file in your Mepis 11 installation, have you tried just updating grub from Mepis?

Maybe Mepis' grub will recognise your Kubuntu partition it in a way that works for legacy grub. After the update-grub, you could then open the menu.lst file and see what's there?
That might work, but I still think specifying the Kubuntu partition with some form of persistent naming (UUID or LABEL) is a better way to do it.
The device assignments can vary from one boot to the next when using block device notation (/dev/sda1, /dev/sdb1, etc.).
I've heard this to be the case, but I've been running Mepis (32-bit, then installed 64-bit) and antiX (64-bit, in the partition that originally had 32-bit Mepis) for over a year and never seen the IDE drive come up with any block device tag other than /dev/sdb, except in the Kubuntu 14.04 Live session. Still, I agree, persistent identifiers are better in principle; I've been avoiding UUID because they're impossible for ordinary humans to remember and very difficult to type accurately. Labels, I can handle (and never knew Grub could use labels as identifiers in place of block device tags or UUID).

I've just changed one of my two Mepis entries, as well as the one for Kubuntu; I'm off to check (back shortly, however it works out -- I kept one Mepis entry unchanged, just in case I were to mistype something).

Edit: Okay, using the root=LABEL=<label> syntax launched Kubuntu directly from Grub Legacy, with the same results as the last time I launched it that way (including the "nomodeset" cheat code): a kernel panic with approximately three 80x25 text screens of scroll before the panic halted operation, and a time stamp on the last panic message of 1.19+ seconds. That same syntax got me back into Mepis without problems, and will avoid any issues (other than having to change root=(hd0,7) etc.) if I ever have the hard disks genuinely swap on me.

Unfortunately, it does nothing at all for my kernel panics.

Lacking other information, I'm tempted to wonder if there's a corrupted file, since I didn't MD5 sum check the iso the first time I downloaded it. I've got a USB now, written from a checked and verified file, so I'm going to try reinstalling Kubuntu (it installs faster than I recall Mepis or antiX doing). Nothing to lose except 10 or 20 minutes of installation time.

BTW, when did we stop using error detecting and correcting file transfer protocols? I recall back in 2400 bps days, if you could stay connected long enough for a file to go through, you could be absolutely certain it was the same as the file sent -- the battle in those days was between efficiency of different protocols, X-modem vs. Y-modem vs. Z-modem vs. J-modem (the latter significantly faster on a slow connection due to reduced redundancy; X-modem, as I recall, sent about 10% extra data on a clean line, for error checking). Now, apparently, we can get bad files even though our data rate is high enough we'd never notice 10% overhead for error correction...
Last edited by Silent Observer on Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:55 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#43 Post by Silent Observer » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:35 pm

lucky9 wrote:kmathern is right. A mixed PATA/SATA system can be a problem. joany has dealt with this on her PC, electing to not use GRUB on the MBR.
I think I avoid this problem because my BIOS allows me to explicitly specify the booting order of my hard disks (i.e. I can put CD-ROM first, then the IDE drive, then the SATA drive).
MEPIS 11 64-bit, MSI P6NGM-L motherboard, Core 2 Quad 9400 2.67 GHz, 4 GiB PC2-5300 RAM, 1 GiB nVidia GT520 on PCI Express x16.

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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#44 Post by Silent Observer » Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:52 pm

Okay, I went through the installation process again, starting from an MD5 checked and verified iso file, freshly written to USB. Everything worked perfectly -- except I got the same kernel panic as before when trying to launch Kubuntu. Would there be a log file in the Kubuntu partition that I could examine to see if there's a clue in the almost 1.2 seconds of initial boot messages that scroll by too fast to read?
MEPIS 11 64-bit, MSI P6NGM-L motherboard, Core 2 Quad 9400 2.67 GHz, 4 GiB PC2-5300 RAM, 1 GiB nVidia GT520 on PCI Express x16.

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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#45 Post by kmathern » Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:52 pm

Are you still getting the following type of fail message? (it's from one of the images you posted at the Kubuntu forum)
Kernel panic - not syncing: No working init found. Try passing init= option to kernel. See Linux Documentation/init.txt for guidance.
If so, I found a thread at the Ubuntu forum that looks similar to your problem: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2219493

In the 12th post in that thread (http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php? ... st13006031) the poster claims it was caused by using a LiveUSB that was created by Unetbootin {in the Kubuntu thread you said you used Unetbootin to create your LiveUSB key}.

The posters solution in the Ubuntu thread was to use "Startup Disk Creator" to create the LiveUSB instead of Unetbootin.

I've never used "Startup Disk Creator", I think it's only available for Ubuntu based installs. You might try creating the LiveUSB again using the dd command instead of Unetbootin. Then install Kubuntu 14.04 again. That, or maybe try using a LiveDVD instead of LiveUSB.

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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#46 Post by JimC » Fri Jul 25, 2014 10:24 am

Also note that Ubuntu (and official derivatives like Kubuntu) just announced 14.04.1. So, if you use that .iso instead, you should have a lot less network usage performing updates, since they can sometimes take as much bandwidth as the download of the original .iso, not even considering all of the time involved to install them (and 14.04.1 is a maintenance release with all of the latest patches/updates included).

14.04.1 announcement from earlier today:
https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubunt ... 00188.html

If you scroll down to the bottom of the main Kubuntu download site, you'll see links to the latest 14.04.1 .iso files for Kubuntu there (the .iso files at the top of the list are still 14.04 versus 14.04.1; even though it's a 14.04.1 folder name):

http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/kubuntu/relea ... 1/release/

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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#47 Post by BitJam » Fri Jul 25, 2014 2:49 pm

Silent Observer wrote:BTW, when did we stop using error detecting and correcting file transfer protocols?
TCP is an error detection/correction protocol. If it weren't then the Internet would not work. I think the problem is that the amount of data being transferred (even by one person) has increased many orders of magnitude while the strength of the error detection/correction has not kept pace. If the amount of data you transfer increases by a factor of a million then the likelihood of an uncaught error also increases by a million. And remember, there are other sources of error in addition to the transfer protocol.

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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#48 Post by joany » Fri Jul 25, 2014 6:46 pm

Silent Observer wrote:
lucky9 wrote:kmathern is right. A mixed PATA/SATA system can be a problem. joany has dealt with this on her PC, electing to not use GRUB on the MBR.
I think I avoid this problem because my BIOS allows me to explicitly specify the booting order of my hard disks (i.e. I can put CD-ROM first, then the IDE drive, then the SATA drive).
Hmm... That's very interesting. My boot order is CD-ROM, SATA (my main disk), and IDE. Maybe changing the order to CD-ROM, IDE, and SATA would fix my problem as well.

The funny thing is that even though SATA is listed first in my boot order, BIOS identifies it as hd1 and IDE as hd0. I would have thought the first disk in the boot order would be hd0, but that's not the case.

In any event, way I worked around this from the very beginning was to use the WinXP boot loader to chain load into the / partition. I accomplished this by installing the GRUB (now GRUB2) boot code on the / PBR instead of the MBR. Right now, that's the only thing I use Windows for -- to boot into Linux.
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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#49 Post by Silent Observer » Fri Jul 25, 2014 10:40 pm

kmathern wrote:In the 12th post in that thread (http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php? ... st13006031) the poster claims it was caused by using a LiveUSB that was created by Unetbootin {in the Kubuntu thread you said you used Unetbootin to create your LiveUSB key}.

The posters solution in the Ubuntu thread was to use "Startup Disk Creator" to create the LiveUSB instead of Unetbootin.

I've never used "Startup Disk Creator", I think it's only available for Ubuntu based installs. You might try creating the LiveUSB again using the dd command instead of Unetbootin. Then install Kubuntu 14.04 again. That, or maybe try using a LiveDVD instead of LiveUSB.
That's not a very useful solution for those installing Ubuntu derivative distros for the first, time, since we won't have Startup Disk Creator available (and one of the two front panel USB ports on my main machine doesn't work, while the one that has two good front panel USB ports is a 32-bit only processor -- so I'd have to rewrite the USB to 32-bit, boot it on the second machine, then use the Live startup disk creator to create a USB in the second port to even try that solution). I can't use a Live DVD; I don't have a DVD-ROM, never mind a writer, on this machine. It'd be almost a weekend project to borrow the drive out of one of the other computers in the house that have DVD+-RW drives, even if Mepis would recognize it immediately and no tweaking were needed (possible, but contrary to my experience).

How do I use dd to create a USB? Just bitwise copy the iso file, then syslinux the USB partition (or just mark it bootable in the partitioning software)? The installer creators generally do more than that, don't they?
JimC wrote:So, if you use that .iso instead, you should have a lot less network usage performing updates, since they can sometimes take as much bandwidth as the download of the original .iso, not even considering all of the time involved to install them (and 14.04.1 is a maintenance release with all of the latest patches/updates included).
My install, including downloading "non-free" software (Flash, etc.) and updating during install, took less time than installing Mepis 64-bit from the DVD-size iso on USB (though Kubuntu is closer in size to the 1.5 GB Mepis iso). I've got pretty fast Internet service at home (sold as 30 Mb/s symmetrical, and it lives up to it on speed tests -- fiber to the house). The advantage of the 14.04.1 is they might (hopefully) have fixed a minor bug in the installer...
joany wrote:
Silent Observer wrote:
lucky9 wrote:kmathern is right. A mixed PATA/SATA system can be a problem. joany has dealt with this on her PC, electing to not use GRUB on the MBR.
I think I avoid this problem because my BIOS allows me to explicitly specify the booting order of my hard disks (i.e. I can put CD-ROM first, then the IDE drive, then the SATA drive).
Hmm... That's very interesting. My boot order is CD-ROM, SATA (my main disk), and IDE. Maybe changing the order to CD-ROM, IDE, and SATA would fix my problem as well.

The funny thing is that even though SATA is listed first in my boot order, BIOS identifies it as hd1 and IDE as hd0. I would have thought the first disk in the boot order would be hd0, but that's not the case.

In any event, way I worked around this from the very beginning was to use the WinXP boot loader to chain load into the / partition. I accomplished this by installing the GRUB (now GRUB2) boot code on the / PBR instead of the MBR. Right now, that's the only thing I use Windows for -- to boot into Linux.
I think what happens on my system is, with IDE set to primary boot device, the SATA drive "wakes up" first during start, so gets assigned sda, but the IDE is hd0 (I had thought, because it was first boot device, but given your results, possibly because BIOS can read or detect IDE at an earlier point in the start than SATA?). However, this has been rock-solid consistent, every boot since I first installed Mepis 11 32-bit (about the time I joined this forum, though I lost my multi-boot when I had to repair the Windows MBR and took a while to get back to fixing Grub to make Mepis run again) -- except when I start the Kubuntu Live USB, which sees the IDE as sda and the SATA as sdb. I just have to manually change all the hd0 and hd1 references in menu.lst every time I run update-grub (so I don't run update-grub any more, or comment/delete the stanzas it produces other than using information in them to correct problems in the hand edited ones).
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Re: Looking for a successor to MEPIS 11

#50 Post by zeeone » Fri Jul 25, 2014 11:56 pm

Research, Research, Research, Before You Walk The Plank.
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