[TriLUG] Tony loses his Windows OS and gives his first report on Suse--Taken from Lockergnome's Penguin Shell
Mon, 3 Dec 2001 11:38:08 -0500
Things couldn't have gotten much worse. I was racing to pull together all
but the reports sections of 12 issues of Penguin Shell. That task promised
to take the entire weekend prior to my departure for Japan. I had most of my
ducks in a row, with the better part of the research done. I had a good
install of Suse to report on. My train of thought was clearing nicely, and I
was ready to get rolling. I booted into Windows to pull email with
GnomeVOICE comments and got a blue screen. "Inaccessible boot device" or
some such drivel. I had some of your comments in Pine on the Linux side,
but, remember, the Linux install was fresh and piping hot. I've been
religiously keeping your mail in Outlook, knowing that my Linux installs
were going to change weekly for awhile. But no Windows.
I resorted to an old trick - scanreg /restore. No luck. Another old trick -
my Win98 boot disk with all the good old-fashioned DOS utilities. I fdisk
/mbr'd, trying to write a new boot record. Nothing. Same old blue screen.
And, worse yet, the Linux install was inacessible, too, even from a boot
floppy. I've yet to figure out what the problem was, but, in the end, it
meant a full reinstall of both OSs, a pile of lost email, the vaporizing of
documents I should have been backing up, and a night of writing lost. When
it was all said and done, my HP 882C printer was left temporarily unuseable
in Windows. Funny, it worked before. This time, the drivers wouldn't load.
The upside of the weekend was the Suse install. I'll tell you more about the
specifics of the install process tomorrow, but let it be said that, despite
a few annoyances, it went very well - both times. Let me give you a bit of
the background on Suse to start the week.
Suse began as a distributor of last week's distro, Slackware. Up until 8
years ago, Suse distributed the Slackware flavor of Linux in 40-floppy sets.
In fact, working closely with Slack's creator, Patrick Volkerding, Suse
created a German version of Slackware. Eventually, the founders of Suse
decided that it was time to create and distribute their own version of
Linux, rather than relying on and making changes to Slackware. Suse, L.L.C.
was formed in Oakland, CA in 1997, with the original team of Hubert Mantel,
Burchard Steinbild, Roland Dyroff and Thomas Fehr at the helm.
Suse, by the way, is a German acronym that stands for "Software und System
Entwicklung" - software and system development.
Suse is the largest Linux distributor in Germany and has made significant
inroads into the U.S. market by focusing on the enterprise and by creating
need-specific packages. Suse is currently the third largest commercial Linux
distributor behind RedHat and Mandrake. Suse 7.3 is distributed in both
Personal and Professional versions. The Pro version contains approximately
1300 additional packages to the Personal version, with most focused on
business solutions. The Pro version also carries an additional 30 days of
installation support, with 90 days total. Suse 7.3 Personal will set you
back a mere $49.95, while the Professional package runs $79.95. Contrary to
my initial comments regarding the availability of a free version of Suse,
you can download both version 7.3 and the Live Evaluation distribution from
Tomorrow, I'll walk you through the install process. I'll give you a clue
today. My HP works in Suse.