Re: [PARPORT] installing linux from HP-7200e or Zip

David Cambell (
Sat, 24 Oct 1998 21:43:36 -0400 (EDT)

> i have an old 486 with just dos loaded on it and I want to take the
> plunge into linux but I don't have a cd-rom on the machine. I have both
> a parallel zip drive and a parallel HP Surestore 7200e. The hard drive
> is only 170mb. Is it possible to install linux from the parallel zip or
> cd-rom?
Firstly what distribution are you using?
The debian install disk contains the driver for the ZIP drive (ppa)
in the boot kernel. RedHat from memory contains the same driver
as a module.

Tricky bit: The CD-ROMs are normally formated in Rockridge extension.
This means that from Linux (or most UNIX boxes) there is extra information
such as file permisions and symbolic links. This information will
be lost when copied from DOS/Win95. I know this from experience
as I have cut a few RH5.1 CDs without the correct permisions, the
install fails badly.

The only distribution that could possible work "out-of-the-box"
would be Slackware. This is one of the oldest distributions
around. Advantages is that it is small, disadvantage is that it
does not have a fancy package manager like RedHat. I don't want t
to continue this dicussion about distributions other than RedHat is
probably the best distribution for new users. Later on check out
the others (or ask your friends) and compare for yourself.

With Slackware you require two boot floppies, one of them being
the root filesystem for the install (the root filesystem for
RedHat is on the CD). You should find in the slackware mirror/CD-ROM
several directories with one to three char names. You will need
to copy the these directories to the ZIP drive. Providing you use
the correct boot disk then you should be able to mount the ZIP
disk and point the install program to it.

# mkdir /zip
# mount /dev/sda4 /mnt

Hopefully Grant should also reply to your email and shed some
light on where you can get a boot disk for RedHat which supports
the HP 7200.

David Campbell

Part-time maintainer of the ZIP drive

PS:My office network is being upgraded, have been having troubles
collecting mail from Expect to be on top of my email
in a couple of days.

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This archive was generated by hypermail 2.0b3 on Wed 30 Dec 1998 - 10:18:40 EST