Home > SuSE, openSUSE > Newbie Guide for the FTP install of SuSe 9.0 Newbie Guide for the FTP install of SuSe 9.0 Eugenia Loli 2004-01-02 SuSE, openSUSE 47 Comments Here is a step-by-step tutorial on how to install SuSE Linux 9.0 from FTP without buying the retail CDs. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 47 Comments 2004-01-02 11:46 pm Anonymous .. is indeed very cryptic. I had a minor hell getting it to work when they released it. So this guide is really something Net installers of SuSE can be helped from. Kudos to you! – Vecc 2004-01-02 11:53 pm Anonymous Nah, this is about the net install, not the install SUSE wants you to use. 2004-01-02 11:54 pm Anonymous 188.8.131.52 /pub/suse/i386/9.0/ 184.108.40.206 /pub/linux/distributions/suse/i386/9.0/ These are very fast FTP servers, if your planning on installing SUSE 9.0 2004-01-02 11:59 pm Anonymous “It’s really funny when a so-called newbie distro (SUSE) has a harder install than a so-called hard distro (Slack).” I think that is because SUSE doesn’t want too many people taking advantage of the FTP install. It would rather that people buy their CDs. 2004-01-03 12:06 am Anonymous Where’s the step where you get your 10Mbps internet connection? Installing from FTP is a pain since, unlike downloading ISOs, you can’t use your computer while it is downloading. 2004-01-03 12:11 am Anonymous Its not so bad. If you have a decent connection and fairly fast computer, itll only take 2-(2 3/4) hrs. 2004-01-03 12:18 am Anonymous I hear about the slowness of install noted above. I think the servers are just pretty overloaded when it first comes out. I wish SuSE had an option for using phone modem. Would take a while, but i was thinking of minimal install and adding packages later. Debian installer (unstable) i think has a provision for using pppd but it’s not finished yet. You could also download the whole deal and set up ur own FTP and then get several machines loaded with SuSE. As far as difficulty, i’d guess they want people to buy the isos. If you are capable of doing the net install, u already know sources for free isos anyway. 2004-01-03 12:24 am Anonymous So basically it says you can get full SuSE without buying anything? Hmm… I thought it wasn’t downloadable (except for that demo disk). Not true? Does it essentially mean that someone can do this install and later put some ISOs (or something like that) online? Does the license permit this? 2004-01-03 12:30 am Anonymous “Where’s the step where you get your 10Mbps internet connection?” Bwahahaha. I live at a giant Linux software mirror, so its faster to do the FTP install than the CD install 2004-01-03 12:31 am Anonymous As far as I know it is allowed. The only thing you cannot do is make money with it, since the YaST-license forbids it. Of course, if I am wrong, somebody please correct me. 2004-01-03 12:33 am Anonymous I installed it 3 days ago and instead of XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX you can insert at the install prompt: Linux install=ftp://ftp.suse.com/pub/suse/i386/9.0/ (Example) Pay attention use “Linux” not “linux” as in howto and you can have some difficulties with the keyboard map! 2004-01-03 12:52 am Anonymous the software that comes with the 9.0 ftp is basically the same as the regular home office one correct. Not the pro one? 2004-01-03 1:00 am Anonymous I am not sure about that. But, I know the ftp differs from the box; the box configurs plugins (flash, java & etc), while with the ftp you have to manually configure it. 2004-01-03 1:01 am Anonymous They do it this way to discourage people so they will purchase the CDs. It is an *excellent* newbie distro, but the support is also pretty bad from what I remember about it. It looks great out-of-the-box, but rpms, etc generally take forever to appear, often weeks and months after the other distros. It’s what drove me to Gentoo, but that’s my own personal thing. Alternatively, you can download the full ISOs via emule in a few days time. 2004-01-03 1:14 am Anonymous About a couple weeks ago I’ve decided to do my first ever Linux install, on Toshiba s5205-503. The disk was already partitioned, the 1st partition (NTFS) contained Windows XP, the rest was unformatted. Because I’ve heard a lot about SUSE 9.0 release and how great they support the laptops I’ve decided to give it a shot, but because I wasn’t sure whether it would work or not, I’ve decided to try with remote install first, and if I like it – go ahead and purchase the PRO version. So I’ve pocked around and found fairly fast server. Downloaded and burned bootstrap ISO image and started installation. The first suprprise was that the install procedure couldn’t identify my network card, just couldn’t find it. So I had to manually pick up the appropriate module. Fortunately — because I did have WinXP installed – I rebooted XP, went to the hardware browser and learned that I have Intel Pro/100. Back to the SUSE. After I’ve loaded the proper driver, and plugged all the necessary network parameters, it has found the server, downloaded files, and started installation. At some point it has started identifying different devices and loading the drivers, every time I have to confirm the action or say DO NOT. When it has identified that I have USB interfaces it has prompted me for OK to load USB. I’ve clicked on OK, and next I’ve lost my mouse (which is a touch pad type). I’ve tried to navigate with keyboard to continue installation, but clearly the whole installation GUI is designed with mouse in mind. So I couldn’t finish installation. Next I repeated the same procedure again, but this time when it has prompted me to load USB drivers, I said “NO”. Doesn’t matter, still I’ve lost my mouse and couldn’t finish the installation. At this point I’ve decided I’m pretty much done with SUSE. Certainly they have very nice installation GUI, but if something goes wrong, you’re screwed up. There should be an option of some low-level keyboard-navigation based installation procedure. Quickly the rest of the story. Next I’ve decided to try Mandrake. I’ve downloaded ISO images, went through installation without any problems. On booting LInux, it got stucked while ‘testing for new hardware’. After trying several times, I gave up on Mandrake as well. Finally, I’ve decided to try Red Hat 9.0 which is available from our school download server. That was interesting one. The installation GUI was UGLY AS A HELL, but I did manage to navigate through it. At some point when it started formatting partition, I’ve selected the option of checking for bad sectors – MY MISTAKE! it has reported that my hard drive has lots of bad sectors, and it doesn’t recommend to continue installation – and aborted the whole procedure. Well, I said, I KNOW BETTER (since it’s a brand new harddrive I got, and installed WinXP on it already), repeated procedure, this time skipped the option of checking the bad sectors. Eventually, I’ve finished the installation, it rebooted and – low and behold – came up. Fully and completely. The next thing I did was installed NVIDIA driver, and added NTFS support. That’s pretty much it. Or, incidently, I did try KNOPPIX, and it came up just fine, but I guess I’m going to stick around with RH 9.0 for the time being, and may be next spring try Fedora Core 2 (with 2.6). My conclusion so far: slick procedures and hyped distributions is something I’m going to stay away from, for the time being. 2004-01-03 1:41 am Anonymous I too had to load the NIC module (there is a menu option that allows one to determine the NIC without leaving the install, I forget what it was called but it essentially does a “cat /proc/pci”). Also, I find http://rpm.pbone.net/ pretty good for getting 9.x RPMs (use the Advanced search capability). YaST really is great. Used to be a RH user but 7.2 was the last good release IMHO, then I went to Mandrake (9.1) but I think I finally settled on SuSE – it just works! Yes, RPM is in my blood at this point I guess although I still long for a Debian distro to impress me (MEPIS is almost there I think). Cheers 2004-01-03 2:06 am Anonymous Well i’m not real familiar with the details of the GPL and the SuSE license. I know having YAST in there complicates things. You can get isos using filemirrors.com or searching Asian ftp sites. From reading a post on an SuSE mailing list, it seems that i can buy SuSE Pro and then install, make copies of the CDs, and give my original set away to someone. Assuming it’s used for home, and non-commercial purposes. For commercial and possibly educational (school) purposes i think u need to buy additional sets. You can also install on multiple home machines, which obviously you technically can’t with an MS license. Anyway that’s my understanding of SuSE’s official response to the questions on the list. Whether it’s legal to serve them up, i don’t know. Apparently people don’t do this cause u don’t know if the purposes of the downloader are commercial or not. I also see lindows for download a lot. Apparently there is a download version minus some of the proprietary stuff and it is legal. There’s also a linux site that offers the isos mail order. Given the low cost, i think u could attribute the money to handling and shipping and burning charges, which is legal. If u like the distro though, and use it a lot, it’s best to support SuSE if you can. I bought 8.1, and will buy 9. They include support and a big manual, and it’s a great deal ($36 at amazon) for newbies. I personally try to follow the license rules, however i’m not going to spend 30 min googling to find the exact ramifications of the license, written in english instead of legalese. Vendors should have a faq on their site, clearly specifying legit use, and illegal use. 2004-01-03 2:27 am Anonymous If you have the hard-disk space, I think you should fire up your favorite FTP program and just download the entire FTP directory to your hard-drive and then do a local install via FTP/NFS (if installing to another computer) or straight from the hard-drive (if installing to the same computer.) It only took me 1 attempt at installing SUSE 9.0 via FTP to realize this time saving step. Lord only knows what happened but the installer died on me part way through the installation on my first try. I realized that if this kept happening I would never get it installed. So I downloaded the entire FTP directory to another computer and then setup an NFS share for it and installed it on this machine. (Which proved to be a waste of time because personally I think SUSE 9 sucks, but hey – that’s just my opinion and I’m entitled to it.) But if you are wanting to play around with SUSE, there’s a good chance you’re going to end up installing it more than once. (You know how it is. You play around so much and get things messed up and just want to start over from scratch.) And you’re not going to want to sit through ANOTHER 4 hour FTP install over the Net. So do yourself a favor, download the entire FTP directory over night some time and then you can install and re-install to your heart’s content. 2004-01-03 2:50 am Anonymous The first suprprise was that the install procedure couldn’t identify my network card, just couldn’t find it. So I had to manually pick up the appropriate module. Fortunately — because I did have WinXP installed – I rebooted XP, went to the hardware browser and learned that I have Intel Pro/100. I thought that was odd about SUSE as well. Picking my NIC from a list wasn’t a big deal because I know what it is, but when every other distro is capable of picking it up without intervention, I have to wonder why SUSE doesn’t? Maybe that feature is reserved for their paid version? At some point it has started identifying different devices and loading the drivers, every time I have to confirm the action or say DO NOT. When it has identified that I have USB interfaces it has prompted me for OK to load USB. I’ve clicked on OK, and next I’ve lost my mouse (which is a touch pad type). I’ve tried to navigate with keyboard to continue installation, but clearly the whole installation GUI is designed with mouse in mind. So I couldn’t finish installation. Next I repeated the same procedure again, but this time when it has prompted me to load USB drivers, I said “NO”. Doesn’t matter, still I’ve lost my mouse and couldn’t finish the installation. At this point I’ve decided I’m pretty much done with SUSE. Certainly they have very nice installation GUI, but if something goes wrong, you’re screwed up. There should be an option of some low-level keyboard-navigation based installation procedure. I had that problem with SUSE as well. (I have a Logitech MX700 Optical Wireless) But by using a combination of keys, TAB, Space bar, up/down arrow, and Enter – I was able to continue through the installation, reselect my mouse and get it working for the rest of the GUI Install. However – for me personally the effort wasn’t worth it. I don’t think SUSE is as good as Fedora (or RedHat), and I definitely don’t think it’s as good as Mandrake. But that’s just my opinion. Others will disagree. Quickly the rest of the story. Next I’ve decided to try Mandrake. I’ve downloaded ISO images, went through installation without any problems. On booting LInux, it got stucked while ‘testing for new hardware’. After trying several times, I gave up on Mandrake as well. That’s unfortunate that you had that problem with Mandrake. I really like Mandrake a lot. Here’s a bit of information that might help you if you care to try it again. When the install screen comes up, press F1 to get more options. “noauto: in some rare cases, your PC may appear to freeze or lock up during the hardware detection phase. If that happens, adding the word noauto as a parameter will tell the installation program to bypass hardware detection. With that option DrakX will not scan for hardware. Hence you will need to manually specify hardware parameters later in the installation process.” 2004-01-03 4:50 am Anonymous If it were legal to just redistribute ISO’s of Suse everyone would be doing it and mirroring it. Ever wonder why there are a billion mirrors for Fedora,Mandrake,Debian, Slackware etc and None for Suse excpet for some “Asain” ftp mirrors? Wonder why they won’t touch it with a ten foot pole? Its because of YAST and Suse’s rediculous licensing issues. Companies like Red Hat and Mandrake have created some really nice GUI admin and Install tools and Always give them back under the GPL to the community. Personally I think if your new to Linux you should stay clear of distros like Suse, Lindows, Xandro etc. Try Fedora and Mandrake first. If your going to bother to ditch Microsoft and their Proprietary Windows might as well do it right. These distros are as good if not better than Suse et al and are Truely Free and totally Open Source. That might not mean too much to you, but long term its REALLY important. Being Truely Free and Open is what got Linux and its ever improving Desktops where they are today. Having the core of say Gnome of KDE proprietary would have just held these products back and prevented them from becoming what they are today. More importantly having parts of them closed and proprietary would Not allow them to move forward. If for example a key developer of Gnome came up with some ubber cool addon for Gnome that made it great and then was hit by a bus. Boom, there goes Gnome’s neat feature because it can’t be maintained or built into future versions of Gnome. If your set on cutting a check to Lindows you might as well buy Windows XP. At least that way you’ll get a decent stable proprietary desktop. Going with one of these semi-proprietary Linux distros is just trading one master for another. Your just buying into closed technology which may or may not even have a future. Like I said, long term it just makes NO sense. All proprietary software is Not evil and when it comes down to it, you need to use what gets the job done. But don’t shortchange how important Truely Free and Open Source software is to the world. Using and prompting this type of software is what got Linux where it is today and its what leading to a better software for us all now and in the Future. 2004-01-03 4:58 am Anonymous Rsync a mirror to one of your machines then do an FTP install off of it. I do this with both Mandrake and SuSE and the installs go faster than regular CD-based installs. 2004-01-03 5:56 am Anonymous “Quickly the rest of the story. Next I’ve decided to try Mandrake. I’ve downloaded ISO images, went through installation without any problems. On booting LInux, it got stucked while ‘testing for new hardware’. After trying several times, I gave up on Mandrake as well.” I had the same problem when attempting to install Mandrake. Thats why I think Mandrake sucks big time. To many bugs and too unstable. Still thats just my opinion others may disagree. Well, after one decent release in their last five (9.0), its actually getting closer to being a general consensus. I have to wonder why Mandrake dont test their releases as good as Suse and others. That’s unfortunate that you had that problem with Suse. I really like Suse a lot. Adding the boot option “noauto” works in Suse too. Keep trying, Suse is a much better distro for a laptop than Mandrake. 2004-01-03 6:04 am Anonymous The first linux distro I tried was RedHat 5.0 and then 5.1. I actually bought 5.1 since it contained support for my spanking new Viper330 with a whopping 4MB of memory 🙂 Lasted with the distro for about 2 weeks. Linux installation has never been a problem for me, I’ve been installing and uninstalling distros ever since that RH5.0 but always switching back to the crashing Win98SE and later XP because of the limited feature set of Linux. It was either instant messenging, speed of the browser or something else that made linux unbearable for me. Until SUSE 9.0 that is. Sure it wasn’t perfect from the start, had to update kopete with an unofficial build using rpm -U, and DVD:s skipped until I fixed it with hdparam, and mpeg4 didn’t play until I updated those packages, but NOW IT WORKS. I use Mozilla for browsing and it’s fast. Kopete supports msn and icq, I’m able to play vcd:s and DVD:s , I configured my hotkeys with xmodmap and it is nicer to use than XP ever was. The last piece of program that almost drew me back to windows was decent filesharing. Sure dcgui-qt works, but it sucks rocks compared to DC++. I’m able to use DC++ on wine, and though it crashes occasionally, I can live with that. SUSE 9.0 is the first distro I feel is almost good enough, and with some tweaking here and there, it IS READY FOR THE DESKTOP (IMHO). Ok, so I’m a geek and I know my way around the commandline, know how to use grep and before I switched to Linux I had cygwin installed on XP (BTW: Cygwin absolutely rules), but what about a non-geek you ask? A week ago I installed SUSE 9.0 on my gf computer (no mouse during install btw) and she’s been using it ever since. The computer is faster in linux than on windows since she doesn’t have to run extra firewall or anti-vir software, and after updating her via gaim to kopete (she liked kopete’s interface more than gaim’s. “Prettier” she said) all has been well. She has booted to Windows only to notice that windows is slow and crashes a lot. Now she’s happily using linux exlusively. When linux is/was ready for you is a highly personal experience that varies depending on your skills, hardware and dumb luck. Just as version 0.9.6 was the tippingpoint with Mozilla for me, SUSE 9.0 was the tippingpoint with linux. Happy new year! 2004-01-03 6:58 am Anonymous “Try Fedora and Mandrake first”. “These distros are as good if not better than Suse et al and are Truely Free and totally Open Source”. Fine, dont use mozilla or realplayer, only watch mpegs, and never attempt to watch dvd’s. Forget crossover office and the commercial users they have allowed to migrate to Linux. If this mentality was the norm, Linux would be dead in the water. Are you aware that the Linux kernal developers use a closed source compiler? You are not seriously claiming Fedora is better than SUSE are you? In time it will be a get better but it still has a long way to go. As for Mandrake, well lets see if they are still around in 12 months time. There will always be closed source software and I fully support software developers to earn a good living from their work. For open source to flourish it must co-exist with commercial software. SUSE is acting resposibly and intelligently. They are going from strength to strength while Redhat has thrown in the towel on the desktop and Mandrake is in administration. Any commercial entity that attempts to give its work away for free will suffer the same fate. Linux (open source)stands to benefit greatly from corporate investment. Sticking your head in the sand will not change this. The more successful open source companies become, the more they are able (and want) to contribute to open source. You can read about SUSE’s huge ongoing contribution to open source (kde especially) on their website. And what do they want in return for this? The right to protect their distribution and their buisness from being exploited by people out to make a quick buck at their expense. Is that you? If not, you are not affected by the YaST license. Dont believe me?, read it. Sometimes I wish the FSF would take their Hurd and precious Gnu tools and continue their crusade while leaving Linux development to continue in an environment governed by common sense. 2004-01-03 7:19 am Anonymous “Are you aware that the Linux kernal developers use a closed source compiler?” [sarcasm] damn that closed source gcc license [/sarcasm] “Sometimes I wish the FSF would take their Hurd and precious Gnu tools and continue their crusade while leaving Linux development to continue in an environment governed by common sense.” Common sense and an unusable system. 2004-01-03 8:05 am Anonymous I like Fedora/Redhat and Suse pretty equally. I do need to agree with downloading the FTP directory to another server and installing across local network. That is the only way to go, outside of buying and installing from DVD. I bought Suse 8.0, and haven’t regretted it yet. Haven’t bought 9 yet, mainly because I can’t get 9 to run from ftp install. I think ANY linux is a good starting point for newbs. To me, its all about what you like, not what the others like. 2004-01-03 8:27 am Anonymous SuSE 9.0 FTP includes almost everything of 9.0 Pro minus some commercial/closed applications (e.g. Java, MainActor, RealPlayer). AFAIK you can also buy a SuSE 9.0 Personal for an easy installation, add the FTP directory as source after installation and install the parts which makes the difference between Personal and Professional (e.g. devel headers, server and tools, IDEs like Eclipse). 2004-01-03 10:18 am Anonymous It’s true that the usb modules does not worked perfectly. When I did my installation, as soon as I load one of the usb module (can’t remember which), the pc will hang. However, the installation *IS CLEARLY* designed with keyboard-only-users in mind, because I was using a USB mouse. Without all the usb modules loaded, I was mouseless during the installation. 2004-01-03 10:27 am Anonymous It takes the same time and you can still use your system while downloading. Afterwards, keep it on DVD or HD. Here is a sample command for mirroring from a German server, so don’t do this from overseas, pick a different one instead. It will exclude the /src sub-directory which you don’t need + which will safe you a couple of GB: wget –no-parent -mvX http://ftp.leo.org/pub/suse/i386/9.0/suse/src/ http://ftp.leo.org/pub/suse/i386/9.0/ (this is one command, I don’t know whether it fits in one line after posting it) This will be about 4 GB. You need not download in one piece, it will pick it up where you stopped. You will have the ISO for the Miniboot-CD + boot-floppies in the boot-subdirectory for installation already. 2004-01-03 1:32 pm Anonymous Not a compiler, sorry. I meant to refer to the proprietary source management system, BitKeeper, that is Torvalds’ (and many other kernel hackers) tool of choice in maintaining the Linux development tree. 2004-01-03 2:25 pm Anonymous If Im going to pass for a hard install then I’ll choose GENTOO that is better and faster than SUSE. 2004-01-03 2:59 pm Anonymous Yes, your Gentoo will be definately faster — and if you were to really tell the difference, you would be my hero… 2004-01-03 3:05 pm Anonymous If Im going to pass for a hard install then I’ll choose GENTOO that is better and faster than SUSE. Well don’t forget, those nanoseconds that you save during bootup will take something like 10,000 years to equal the time lost during your 48 hour installation marathon. 2004-01-03 3:37 pm Anonymous “Try Fedora and Mandrake first”. “These distros are as good if not better than Suse et al and are Truely Free and totally Open Source”. Fine, dont use mozilla or realplayer, only watch mpegs, and never attempt to watch dvd’s. Um, both Fedora and Mandrake have Mozilla. 2004-01-03 3:50 pm Anonymous luca, if you’re right about that blankety blank blank Linux versus linux thing, that is sooo irritating – I must’ve tried following those ftp directions 10 times before giving up and using manual ftp install and the ip. To quote readme.ftp: linux install=ftp://ftp_server/directory not: Linux install=ftp://ftp_server/directory I’ll be giving your version a try in a bit, thanks for sharing – hope it works. The ftp install other than the site selection was pretty much identical to the CD install especially once the YAST starts up. SUSE could learn from OpenBSD though, you should be able to select multiple mirrors and the install software should be able to recover in the event of timeouts. Overall, I thought the article was good and useful, wish I had it the day I did the install… will 2004-01-03 5:36 pm Anonymous Does anyone know which netowrk module is needed to use the NTL modem plugged in via USB? 2004-01-03 6:04 pm Anonymous I used to connect to it via the ethernet port and set my machine to DHCP. It worked fine to me when I had NTL last year. 2004-01-03 6:06 pm Anonymous I can’t do that at the moment unfortunatly as my NIC (along with the rest of the bits for my new computer) is in the post somewhere 2004-01-03 6:18 pm Anonymous Not to be an ass, but if the FTP install is too inconvenient, buy the boxed set. The DVD install option is particularly nice. As for SUSE support, I’ve only needed it once: an unusual little problem of my own creation back at 8.2. I received a courteous and comprehensive email within three hours. It would be nice to see a more active user support base, but I suspect that will happen as the distro becomes more popular in the States. There *are* some things I’d like to see from SUSE: improved Gnome support (9.0 ships with 2.2 — why?), the 2.6 kernel, and KDE 3.2 when it’s ready. My guess is SUSE 10 will ship with a new version of Ximian as the default, and the other updates will be available soon. I see that Ximian has just released XD2 for SUSE 9. Guess that shouldn’t be a surprise. My experience with SUSE has been excellent. I suspect SUSE’s new relationship to Novell will only help. 2004-01-03 6:24 pm Anonymous Ximian is still busy to catch up with GNOME 2.4 so don’t be surprised if the next SUSE (IMO 9.1 and not 10) will include a Ximian GNOME based on GNOME 2.4 when GNOME 2.6 is already current. 2004-01-03 6:58 pm Anonymous Not to be an ass, but if the FTP install is too inconvenient, buy the boxed set. The DVD install option is particularly nice. That’s all good if you actually like SUSE. But I wanted to “try before I buy”… and thank God I did because I would have been real unhappy having paid for a distribution that in the end I didn’t like well enough to use. But I agree with the DVD install option comment. After playing with the Mandrake 9.2 download version for a few weeks I decided to buy the DVD from the Mandrake Store. Having all the data on 1 disc is great regardless what your distro of choice may be. 2004-01-03 8:48 pm Anonymous this is a good artical if i ever want to play with suse again i may just have to dig it back up. however i dont think thats going to happen. suse is seems to really gear itself at being a migration linux while the only distro i turn any “newbie” onto anymore is knoppix. best linux hardware auto detection there is right now. sence nobody seems to have mentioned it… just my 2 cents – we all have our spare change 2004-01-03 8:49 pm Anonymous Well.. liking or not liking a distro is all fine and stuff for various subjective reasons. — But where do you currently get Transgaming packages and Cross Over Office packages bought + installed via a simple “click + run” for 1/4 of the normal price other than Suse 9..?! You guess it — nowhere except SuSE. It’s real cool. People have been asking for ages that Linux become as easy as 1-2-3 in order to succed and here you have have it. Suse will be big in no time for its quality and its lately signed strategic partnerships — If you are no uber-geek and get around everything for yourself due to your knowlegde, SuSE will be the way to go. 2004-01-03 9:00 pm Anonymous Well don’t forget, those nanoseconds that you save during bootup will take something like 10,000 years to equal the time lost during your 48 hour installation marathon. Actually “merge” will save lots of time, more than SUSE, I won’t have to break my brain for installations. GENTOO > SUSE period. 2004-01-03 11:24 pm Anonymous IIRC it does matter, SUSE offer 7GB to download where as Mandrake only offer about 3GB and Red Hat (Fedora) only offer about 4GB. If you have the hard drive space & bandwidth, I would definitely recommend downloading the whole tree. Also downloading the whole tree for the updates makes updating a much nicer experience. BTW installing the boxed version is much nicer than installing the FTP version as you get a bit of extra software (i.e. all the proprietary stuff)). 2004-01-03 11:27 pm Anonymous I forgot to mention, although SUSE offer 7GB to download, if you do the typical install it will require much less than that (it probably won’t download much more than 1GB). 2004-01-05 9:21 am Anonymous I just bought a new Fujitsu Siemens AMILO D Notebook and a Suse 9.0 Pro. I had absolutly no problems to install it with a dual boot for WinDoze XP (my 10Go concession to Open Source because of Fruity Loops and Acid). I want to underline that everything works fine and I had no conflict or misdetection of the peripherals (even the onboard modem has been detected, and the ATI Radeon 9000 works fine with 3D acceleration). The complete install took 1h25 for the entire 5 Cds including Advanced Servers, dev tools and sources, and had no problems. This distro is just great, reliable, complete and fast. And thanks to Siemens Germany who provides a support for Linux Users (notebooks are listed with the compatibility with Suse Distro, listed model by model). A new reason to switch to Linux for home users (except music ) Regards.