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Choosing Your Installation Media

First, choose the boot media for the installation system. Next, choose the method you will use to install the base system.

To boot the installation system, you have the following choices: bootable CD-ROM, floppies, or a non-Linux boot loader.

CD-ROM booting is one of the easiest ways to install. Not all machines can boot directly from the CD-ROM so you may still need to use floppies. Booting from floppies is supported for most platforms. Floppy booting is described in section 2.4.2 on page [*].

Installing from a CD-ROM

If your system supports booting from a CD-ROM, you don't need any floppies. Put the CD-ROM into the drive, turn your computer off, and then turn it back on. You should see a Welcome screen with a boot prompt at the bottom. Now you can skip down to section 2.5.

If your computer didn't ``see'' the Debian CD-ROM, the easiest option is to make two floppies for booting (described in section 2.4.2) and then use them to start Debian. Don't worry; after Debian is finished with those two floppies, it will find your CD-ROM with no trouble.

Booting from Floppies

It's not hard at all to boot from floppies. In fact, your CD-ROM contains all the information necessary to create boot disks for you. For these instructions, you will need to get two disks. Label the first one ``Debian 2.1 Install/Rescue Disk'' and the second ``Debian 2.1 Modules/Drivers Disk.''

Creating Floppies from Disk Images

Disk images are files containing the complete contents of a floppy disk in raw form. Disk images, such as resc1440.bin, cannot simply be copied to floppy drives. A special program is used to write the image files to floppy disk in raw mode.

First, you need to get to a DOS prompt. In Windows 95 and above, you can do this by double-clicking on an MS-DOS icon or by going to Start\( \rightarrow \)Programs\( \rightarrow \)MS-DOS prompt. Then, insert your Debian GNU/Linux CD-ROM into your CD-ROM drive. First, you change to your CD-ROM drive. In most cases, this is D:.

Now, change to the directory containing the disk images.



If you get an error, double-check what you're typing. If the error persists, manually issue CD \DISTS\SLINK\MAIN\DISKS-I386, then run DIR, and then CD into the directory indicated. Note that the above commands, and some other examples below, may appear as a single line on your display even if they are wrapped here.

Now, you're ready to create the first of two disks. Start the program to write them out, rawrite2:



RaWrite 2.0 - Write disk file to 

raw floppy diskette

Rawrite2 starts and displays its welcome message. Next, it asks for the filename and diskette drive. You tell it to write resc1440.bin to a:

Enter disk image source file name: resc1440.bin

Enter target diskette drive: a:

Rawrite2 now asks you to insert a disk into the floppy drive. Do so and press Enter.

Plese insert a formatted diskette into 

drive A: and press -ENTER- :

At this point, rawrite2 will create the first of the two disks. Now, you need to repeat the process for the second disk:



RaWrite 2.0 - Write disk file to

raw floppy diskette

Enter disk image source file name: drv1440.bin

Enter target diskette drive: a:

Please insert a formatted diskette into

drive A: and press -ENTER- :

By now, your disks are created. You can now use the first one to boot.

Booting Debian

You are now ready to boot into Debian! Shut down your existing operating system, turn off your computer, and place the Install/Rescue Disk into the floppy drive. Now turn your computer back on. You should get a Welcome screen with a boot prompt at the bottom.

John Goerzen / Ossama Othman

  Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License Design by Interspire