Installing to the Hard Disk

From DSL Wiki

This page in other languages: Deutsch, Español, Français

Steps of installing DSL to a harddisk are as follows:

1) Boot up the DSL livecd. If your computer does not support booting from CDROM drive, then download the boot floppy image from the DSL website and get the RAWRITE32.exe program and create a boot floppy disk. Then use the boot floppy + liveCD to start up DSL.

2) Open up an xterminal window (click on the A:Terminal icon or right-click on the desktop and choose a terminal) and type:

        sudo -s
        cfdisk /dev/hda

Assuming that you are ready to blow away all of your existing data storage (you might want to back up any special drivers and other important stuff in case you want to re-install the original OS), create 2 new partitions:

  • hda1 Linux Swap Type 82 Size (at least 128mb)
  • hda2 Linux Type 83 Size (the rest of the disk space, I recommend at least 2gb). Flag this partition as bootable.

Before you leave cfdisk, write the changes to the partition table with the Write option. If your hard disk is really big, try leaving some unpartitioned space for future use.

  • Your DSL installation will go to partition hda2.
  • Your DSL swap partition will be hda1.

3) Next, you will need to reboot your system, again with the DSL livecd ...

4) Then type:

        sudo -s
        swapoff -a    swapoff is a critical step, make sure you do it.
        mkswap /dev/hda1
        swapon /dev/hda1  [If you get "device or resource busy" here, ignore it.]

5) Then follow the hd install script. The FAQ is at Your system will need to reboot again. Remove the CD, and this time boot to the hard drive and continue following the instructions.

Note: There have been many reported problems with networking disappearing after installing DSL 3.2.

Note: If you are attempting to install to a hard drive from within VMWare, you need to define your hard drive as an IDE, NOT the recommended SCSI.

Installing DSL to a Harddisk (another way)

1) Boot from the DSL LiveCD

2) At the boot prompt type "install"

3) Select option #1 to create a boot floppy (the installation script would only finish without errors if the boot floppy was available, even when installing from CD)

4) Select option #10 to partition your hard disk as described above.

5) Run the hard drive install option (with the boot floppy inserted)

6) The install will ask if you want to use Lilo or Grub as a boot loader after it finishes copying the DSL files.

Hard Drive Installation Walkthroughs

You can read about the experience of others at these walkthrough pages. If you have information on a hard drive installation please add it to the wiki with Category 'Specific Systems', and consider adding a link to the appropriate installation page (hard drive, usb, frugal, etc.)