How to Lose a Day and Most of the Following Night

Recently it came time to once again take a look at finding a use for some old computers. Several pentium II, pentium III, and better machines were gathering dust. They are worth more to me than anyone is willing to pay, so I keep them in hopes of finding a use for them.

Last week I decided to set them up with Debian Etch, Apache2, Mysql, PHP5, and WordPress.

That was the start of an unexpected learning curve. I have been working with computers since the mid 1970’s. I thought I knew what I was doing.

The first problem was getting networking to work with Debian Etch. Every Linux installation I had previously done activated networking on boot. Once installed Debian Etch requires a user to activate networking after boot by selecting it on the GUI. This meant I would not be able to go with a headless, power-on to boot and activate system if I settled for the default installation.

Turns out the problem is due to a new bit of software called Network Manager. Intentions were good but results were bad. I would welcome anything that really does make networking easier but Network Manager just adds an additional level of un-needed and (in my case) unwanted complexity.

I un-installed the problematic Network Manager and returned my computer to sane operation. It now enables networking on boot without need for user intervention.

Explore posts in the same categories: computer stuff

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