Slackware Server 2024 – PSU and OS Install

#computers #linux #slackware #unix #bsd #servers #hardware #software #virtualmachine #slackwareserver2024

For a moment there I was thinking this might have all been for naught. Turns out though, I just didn't have the 20 pin connector snugged in tight enough. It does run! How embarrassing, but by admitting these small snafus we can all learn to not feel stupid by simple mistakes.

There was also a brief moment where I thought the power supply wouldn't fit, and I was genuinely confused as to why, but then I remembered that I had bent the tab that the psu normally sits on backwards to try and fit the old Dell psu. There's a picture below where you can see the rectangle-shaped cutout toward the back of the case in the upper-righthand corner. That's where the tab bends forward into the case to act as a little shelf for the psu. It's really not needed, but it does help you guide the psu into place so that the mounting screws are easier to line up.

🔧 More Spare Parts

Digging around through the closet, I did find a monitor and a keyboard. Both are from the Frakenstien Dell. I also came across another PCI WiFi card, so I went ahead and threw that in as well. I know it's a different chipset from the Linksys one that I have in there right now, and I do remember Slackware being quite finicky with WiFi adapters, so I figured it couldn't hurt. Plus, it's one more adapter toward my goal of having separate adapters for each VM I want to run.

The monitor doesn't have a stand... At least I don't think that it does (EDIT: I have found the stand, but I don't know where the screws for it are). If I remember correctly both the monitor and the keyboard are from the Debian database server that I built for work some 10+ years ago. After the office shut down, those things found their way into my possession (with permission of course). The monitor is indeed a 4:3 aspect ratio, which is kind of bad ass. It's almost better than tearing apart a Chromebook and re-purposing the LCD. I think it's perfect for a machine that I have no plans of installing a graphical environment on.

There's definitely something wrong with these old hard drives though. I've been sitting here looking at the “formatting” prompt for quite some time now. I was about to just buy the drives I want on Amazon when I clicked on a Kingston SATA SSD thinking I should probably have an OS/boot drive that is as fast as is possible with this board, and Amazon reminded me that I've ordered that same item two other times. One is in the desktop that I'm on right now and using to type this post, the other is in a Macbook Pro that I bought last year as a project device to work on. I'm going to sit here and wait for this formatting prompt and see if it actually get through the process. If so, then I might be able to use it, but if it goes too long, and I'm headed to bed while it's still running, I'll probably just power down the...

HOLY SHIT! It finished... The question now though is, do I format the other partition?? I do want the use of ALL The space... I don't know if the speed is what I need though. Especially not if I need to back up data. BUT... I'm going to do it anyway. Let's format this other chunk and hopefully walk away with 1TB of usuable space. OH, yes, I found another drive... An old Seagate that I have bought for my Dad back in 2015 when we built the PC that he's still on to this day, running the same install of Ubuntu 14.04. His PC still works, doesn't get any updates, but the version of Firefox that is on the machine handles most of the web just fine. It's an incredible miracle. The Seagate drive on the other hand is not working at all and must be thrown in the trash.

Alright, time to select the packages that I want to use.

Most everything is deselected... I may need to install other packages later, but honestly, it's just going to be headless, so there's not a lot that is needed. The networking stack of packages should have SSH and NFS in it... Setting up Qemu or Xen will be a project for after the machine is already talking to the other computers on my network. My hope is that it will see at least one of the nics and I can get comfortable with connecting to wireless access points from command line. That's actually something that I never do in Linux. I mostly use desktop distros, or distros that have a solid out of the box desktop experience, and a lot of the time, using your wireless adapter and picking what WiFi signal you want to connect to is just a matter of clicking on it and entering the password. We'll see.

It is installing...

It's stuck on Rust right now though... I blame Primeagen.

After all that I couldn't get it to connect via WiFi. It does recognize both wireless nics, however, the wpa_supplicant program was having issues finding a library file that it needs. So I've gone back to the install, since I have the space, I've decided to just do a full install. Which means it will have a bunch of crap on it that I won't ever use, but it's easier than trying to do an expert install.

The entire experience really has me just remembering all the other times I spent fucking around with Slackware never getting it to do exactly what I wanted it to do. I mean, Arch may be easier to deal with at this point. But honestly, I'm heavily leaning toward FeedBSD.

Installation is complete though.

What's Next?

Configuring the box. My goal is to make sure that it's connected to my network and I can SSH in. Once I can do that, then I can unplug the monitor and keyboard and just leave it on.

I am writing this in the future, I can tell you that Slackware remains a pain in my ass and I've considered buying some red spray paint so that I don't have FreeBSD installed on a machine in a green case.