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Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text - Linux Setup, Configuration & Administration

[email]alextotallynerd.com[/email] (Alex) writes: ]Hi. ]I'm installing Red Hat 8.0 on a system with an older CGA video card ]and amber Hercules monitor, and I've been running into some huge ]issues. ]First, the installer, even in Text mode, didn't display properly. It ]used what looked like ANSI, but my monitor used the same color for ]background and forground. My work around was to move my VGA monitor ]and card to the system for install. Install went flawlessly. I ]didn't install any GUI apps or X. ]Next, I put the CGA card back in and rebooted. Hung when GRUB tried ]to start. ...

  1. #1

    Default Re: Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text

    [email]alextotallynerd.com[/email] (Alex) writes:

    ]Hi.

    ]I'm installing Red Hat 8.0 on a system with an older CGA video card
    ]and amber Hercules monitor, and I've been running into some huge
    ]issues.

    ]First, the installer, even in Text mode, didn't display properly. It
    ]used what looked like ANSI, but my monitor used the same color for
    ]background and forground. My work around was to move my VGA monitor
    ]and card to the system for install. Install went flawlessly. I
    ]didn't install any GUI apps or X.

    ]Next, I put the CGA card back in and rebooted. Hung when GRUB tried
    ]to start. Connected my VGA monitor and card back-up and remembered
    ]that GRUB launches a GUI screen to choose kernel. Quick editing of
    ]the grub.conf fixed this -- made it start in TEXT mode.

    ]Now, things are working okay when the CGA card and Hercules monitor
    ]are connected, but the curser is always blinking in the middle of the
    ]screen. This makes using Pine, Pico, and other apps almost impossible
    ]since I can't tell where I'm at. Even at login, curser is in middle
    ]of screen. Typed characters appear where they should, but you have no
    ]idea where the curser is actually at.

    ]One clue is when I login to console, I get the error: putfont:
    ]PIO_FONT: Invalid argument

    ]I didn't get this when the VGA monitor was connected. I just want
    ]plain ASCII, no ANSI, no color, nothing. How can I do this? Also,
    ]why doesn't Red Hat make it easier for folks with older systems to
    ]install RH? Linix's strong suit is that it works on older systems...
    ]and this system is more then enough power for what I need to do. Yet
    ]they've made it very difficult to get it even installed.

    ]Thanks for any suggestions -

    ]Alex.

    ]BTW, please don't reply with UPGRADE YOUR SYSTEM. The hardware will
    ]work for what I need... but Red Hat seems to have the MS syndrome when
    ]it comes to older hardware.

    Not redhat. This is in linux itself. I am not at all sure that there is
    a CGA driver. I really would just go out and buy a $5 vga card for it.
    Yes, it may be possible to find a cga driver. but the time and effort
    are going to more than $5

    Bill Unruh Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text

    In comp.os.linux.redhat Bill Mar <bmariglou.com> wrote:
    > On 16 Aug 2003 11:55:32 -0700, Alex
    > <alextotallynerd.com> wrote:
    >> Now, things are working okay when the CGA card and Hercules monitor
    >> are connected, but the curser is always blinking in the middle of the
    [...]
    > Slackware or Debian may be better for running with older hardware, but
    > come on now -- CGA??
    Years ago it used to be possible, I had a '386 that I used as a server
    with a CGI card and an amber monitor. It's been a long time, if I
    remember, I was using Slackware 2.x at the time...


    --
    Jim Buchanan [email]jbuchanabuchanan1.net[/email] [email]jbuchana[/email]
    =================== [url]http://www.buchanan1.net/[/url] ==========================
    "Sing me a song, you're a singer, Do me a wrong, you're a bringer of evil.
    The devil is never a maker, the less that you give, you're a taker."
    -Ronnie James Dio
    ================= Visit: [url]http://www.thehungersite.com[/url] ==================
    jbuchana@buchanan1.net Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text

    Ok man, when all else fails because video is an issue, don't use
    video! Use the old serial cable method. Grab yourself a null modem
    cable, connect the machine to another machine through the serial
    ports, and install that way.

    On the machine connected via null modem cable:
    Fire up Hyperterminal or Minicom. Set your port settings to 9600,
    8n1, no hardware or software flow control.

    On the machine being installed:
    Stick in the cd's like normal, and when the install screen pops up,
    type the command line...
    linux text console=/dev/ttyS0,9600
    (Note: if you plugged the serial cable into the second port, it's
    ttyS1)

    From that point on, do the install from the machine running
    hyperterminal or minicom. It'll look and act just a tad bit funky,
    but it'll work. The screen redraws get sloppy, but it's pretty
    painless.

    We use cluster nodes without any video whatsoever, so I'm always using
    the serial ports as my console.

    [email]alextotallynerd.com[/email] (Alex) wrote in message news:<2ba4b4eb.0308161055.73f6361cposting.google. com>...
    > Hi.
    <SNIPPED>
    > Thanks for any suggestions -
    >
    > Alex.
    >
    > BTW, please don't reply with UPGRADE YOUR SYSTEM. The hardware will
    > work for what I need... but Red Hat seems to have the MS syndrome when
    > it comes to older hardware.
    Phil Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text

    Bill Mar <bmariglou.com> wrote in message news:<p4r211-58v.ln1don.localnet>...
    > On 16 Aug 2003 11:55:32 -0700, Alex
    > <alextotallynerd.com> wrote:
    > > Now, things are working okay when the CGA card and Hercules monitor
    > > are connected, but the curser is always blinking in the middle of the
    > > screen. This makes using Pine, Pico, and other apps almost impossible
    > > since I can't tell where I'm at. Even at login, curser is in middle
    > > of screen. Typed characters appear where they should, but you have no
    > > idea where the curser is actually at.
    > >
    > The cursor in the middle of the screen is your mouse cursor. Uninstall
    > gpm if you don't have a mouse.
    Tried uninstalling it... no go. But thanks for the suggestion.
    Free'd up some disk space :)
    > > BTW, please don't reply with UPGRADE YOUR SYSTEM. The hardware will
    > > work for what I need... but Red Hat seems to have the MS syndrome when
    > > it comes to older hardware.
    >
    > Slackware or Debian may be better for running with older hardware, but
    > come on now -- CGA??
    I always get funny looks or comments when I mention using older
    computer parts to do modern day tasks. People don't look at folks
    funny when they drive an old car or use old tools to do woodwork. For
    my needs in this system, the good'ol Hercules monitor will do for now.
    Yeah I could buy a used VGA monitor and VGA card for probably $20 at
    a local compu-chopshop, but why bother. Heck, if I could get my old
    Trash-80 on the Internet, I'd still be using it :)

    Take care...

    Alex.
    Alex Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text

    On Sat, 16 Aug 2003 21:41:14 -0700, Phil wrote:
    > Ok man, when all else fails because video is an issue, don't use
    > video! Use the old serial cable method. Grab yourself a null modem
    > cable, connect the machine to another machine through the serial
    > ports, and install that way.
    >
    > On the machine connected via null modem cable:
    > Fire up Hyperterminal or Minicom. Set your port settings to 9600,
    > 8n1, no hardware or software flow control.
    >
    > On the machine being installed:
    > Stick in the cd's like normal, and when the install screen pops up,
    > type the command line...
    > linux text console=/dev/ttyS0,9600
    > (Note: if you plugged the serial cable into the second port, it's
    > ttyS1)
    >
    > From that point on, do the install from the machine running
    > hyperterminal or minicom. It'll look and act just a tad bit funky,
    > but it'll work. The screen redraws get sloppy, but it's pretty
    > painless.
    >
    > We use cluster nodes without any video whatsoever, so I'm always using
    > the serial ports as my console.
    >
    Once installed, how does one enable connection through the serial port? I
    have a RH8 system right next to my main computer, but I am using ssh to
    connect to it. This works most of the time. except it does not work when
    I upgrade the kernel and the network drivers require reinstall...
    CL [dnoyeB] Gilbert Guest

  6. #6

    Default Re: Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text

    Ugh...
    Dammit, just use a very old version that has full suppor for CGA. I am
    still using my old 386 as a router for a friend's network, and it has
    slackware 2 installed. The specs are the same, cga with hercules card
    (I still use the monitor since it's not of great use anyway). I didn't
    install a mouse (and of course, I didn't install X)
    Lazar Alexandru Guest

  7. #7

    Default Re: Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text

    CL [dnoyeB] Gilbert wrote:
    > thank you. that seems a bit more than I need though. I dont actually
    > need kernel install with serial console.
    The GRUB config file I mentioned is not for installing a Linux kernel
    via the serial port. It simply redirects the Linux kernel's boot
    messages to the serial port or to the display console (CRT), as selected
    by the user. Of course, if a Linux box never has a display console
    attached to it, the console-specific settings can be entirely removed
    from the GRUB config file. IOW, you can write the GRUB config file so
    that the Linux kernel always sends its boot messages to the serial port
    and nowhere else. Likewise, you can reconfigure the /etc/inittab file so
    that the serial port has the only getty. (I mean, if the Linux box has
    no console interface -- i.e., keyboard, mouse, or display -- it doesn't
    make much sense to have console-based getty's running!)

    --
    Jim

    To reply by email, remove "link" and change "now.here" to "yahoo"
    jfischer_link5809{at}now.here.com


    Jim Fischer Guest

  8. #8

    Default Re: Installing Red Hat with TRUE ASCII text

    [email]alextotallynerd.com[/email] (Alex) wrote in
    news:2ba4b4eb.0308170411.7300352dposting.google.c om:
    > Bill Mar <bmariglou.com> wrote in message
    > news:<p4r211-58v.ln1don.localnet>...
    >> On 16 Aug 2003 11:55:32 -0700, Alex
    >> <alextotallynerd.com> wrote:
    >> ...
    >> > BTW, please don't reply with UPGRADE YOUR SYSTEM. The hardware
    >> > will work for what I need... but Red Hat seems to have the M$
    >> > syndrome when it comes to older hardware.
    >> Slackware or Debian may be better for running with older hardware,
    >> but come on now -- CGA??
    > I always get funny looks or comments when I mention using older
    > computer parts to do modern day tasks. People don't look at folks
    > funny when they drive an old car or use old tools to do woodwork. For
    > my needs in this system, the good'ol Hercules monitor will do for now.
    > Yeah I could buy a used VGA monitor and VGA card for probably $20 at
    > a local compu-chopshop, but why bother. Heck, if I could get my old
    > Trash-80 on the Internet, I'd still be using it :)
    > Take care...
    > Alex.
    What's wrong with using it, as long as it works? "Modern" computers
    are overcomplicated (I call it the "yuppie syndrome"). My 100MHz 486 would
    not run RedHat 7 so I had to use Slackware. I would rather use RedHat, if
    only because of relative familiarity. I also get weird looks from people
    when I tell them I want to build gadgets for my TI99/4A. Also, I have a
    favorite video game that I cannot play anymore because it's hard-coded for
    CGA.

    Sue.
    Sue D. Nimh Guest

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