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Ticondriud
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 8:00 pm    Post subject: Need Installation Process Clarity Reply with quote

So I'm back on Gentoo after a long while, and it seems that everything Linux has changed in the intervening years. I think I was using kernel 2.6 last. So now I'm trying to install on a rather new laptop. I chose to use systemd, as it seems that's where everything is going now, and I need to use UEFI, I don't have an option to turn it off in the BIOS. I'm also using GPT, not MBR. And I can't figure out what happened to KDE. All I see is gnome.

My problem is that the Handbook is no longer the tool it was. It used to be that one could follow it blindly, step by step, and get a working Gentoo install. Even with some variances in the setup, the Handbook had branching to handle those issues. Where the heck are the branches for systemd and UEFI?? I just read through a threadnought on here where some poor guy was just trying to make UEFI work and he was being led through a nightmare of configuration settings to get a basic component of a modern OS to work.

Can *anyone* just explain what to do INSTEAD OF what the handbook says to do for these things? The few "guides" I've found assume you're working on a completed installation, which is insane, as there's no way to get to that point without doing it in the first place! As it is, I'm typing this post from inside the browser supplied with the LiveDVD, because I have no other way of doing so.
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saboya
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How is the handbook insufficient for a proper bootloader config?

https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Handbook:AMD64/Installation/Bootloader
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Jaglover
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never thought of Handbook as a comprehensive detailed guide, it's more like reference, people using it are supposed to have some Linux experience ... no?
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The problem is that there are so many different choices and configurations around, and Gentoo is trying to cater to every single possibility making it tough to write the documentation. And yes with all the options available, it seems like the steep learning curve got steeper for Gentoo at least until machines become uniform once more (i.e. all the MBR machines are in the trash... that will be a sad day).

I think a few more questions that need to be answered before getting a solid guide:

- Do you want to use grub2 or not?
- Are you using initramfs (genkernel) or not. If not, you have to choose your kernel options carefully; if you do, the suggestion is to use grub2 as there have been reports that some UEFI have bugs and the kernel won't load initramfs. I suspect as a once again fresh user to go ahead and use grub2, later you can either get rid of it if you desire.
- If you want to dual boot, this will add another can of worms. Assuming you don't want to dual boot...

So this is still going to be very spotty as details will be time consuming to write, but look for them in the guide, I hope I didn't omit any steps though for me it's gotten to be a reactionary point when installing:

1. Boot your install media. Make sure that media boots into UEFI mode as you will not be able to update the UEFI bootloader if you have no access to UEFI. Some images use the classic El-Torito boot and this is insufficient, it must be UEFI boot.
2. Partition your hard/solidstate disk as per the guide, you want to make sure you use "parted" so you can make a GPT label.
Make a ESP on the disk (must be FAT16/FAT32/VFAT) as well as a root and swap partition if desired. Mount partitions as a subdirectory as you would like to see them (mount /dev/sda(root) /gentoo; mount /dev/sda(esp) /gentoo/boot)
3. Untarring: Since you want systemd, use the systemd stage3 image
4. chroot into the image /gentoo and change your root password.
5. Tell portage to use the UEFI version of GRUB2 and then emerge grub2. This tells portage to use the UEFI grub2, but you still need to emerge it:
# echo 'GRUB_PLATFORMS="efi-64"' >> /etc/portage/make.conf
6. Install grub to you ESP and tell UEFI bootloader to load GRUB from the ESP
# grub-install --target=x86_64-efi --efi-directory=/boot
7. Edit /etc/default/grub and look for GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX="init=/usr/lib/systemd/systemd" and uncomment that line
8. Install your kernel, initramfs to /boot, don't forget to install modules.
9. Use grub-mkconfig to generate your new grub config file and put it in /boot/grub/grub.cfg
At this point you should be able to boot into your disk with systemd.

BTW I don't use KDE, but I think "kde plasma" or something like that is the current incarnation of KDE.
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Ticondriud
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eccerr0r wrote:


I think a few more questions that need to be answered before getting a solid guide:

- Do you want to use grub2 or not? YES
- Are you using initramfs (genkernel) or not. NO I'm aware of the issues, I never used genkernel in the past either.
- If you want to dual boot, this will add another can of worms. NO

So this is still going to be very spotty as details will be time consuming to write, but look for them in the guide, I hope I didn't omit any steps though for me it's gotten to be a reactionary point when installing:

1. Boot your install media. Make sure that media boots into UEFI mode as you will not be able to update the UEFI bootloader if you have no access to UEFI. Some images use the classic El-Torito boot and this is insufficient, it must be UEFI boot. I download the latest LiveDVD, I assumed it booted UEFI as my laptop didn't complain about it like it did the minimal install ISO.

2. Partition your hard/solidstate disk as per the guide, you want to make sure you use "parted" so you can make a GPT label. I use gparted, and the drive is GPT, completely formatted fresh. I have 4 partitions, boot, efi, swap, and root. ext2, FAT32, swp, and EXT4 respectively.

Make a ESP on the disk (must be FAT16/FAT32/VFAT) as well as a root and swap partition if desired. Mount partitions as a subdirectory as you would like to see them (mount /dev/sda(root) /gentoo; mount /dev/sda(esp) /gentoo/boot) Yes, but what do I do with it?

3. Untarring: Since you want systemd, use the systemd stage3 image There was a stage3 tarball with it? You don't just select the profile and emerge -e world?

4. chroot into the image /gentoo and change your root password. Yep

Not this far along yet. But I did just compile my kernel.
5. Tell portage to use the UEFI version of GRUB2 and then emerge grub2. This tells portage to use the UEFI grub2, but you still need to emerge it:
# echo 'GRUB_PLATFORMS="efi-64"' >> /etc/portage/make.conf

6. Install grub to you ESP and tell UEFI bootloader to load GRUB from the ESP
# grub-install --target=x86_64-efi --efi-directory=/boot
7. Edit /etc/default/grub and look for GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX="init=/usr/lib/systemd/systemd" and uncomment that line

8. Install your kernel, initramfs to /boot, don't forget to install modules. I don't use Genkernel

9. Use grub-mkconfig to generate your new grub config file and put it in /boot/grub/grub.cfg
At this point you should be able to boot into your disk with systemd.

BTW I don't use KDE, but I think "kde plasma" or something like that is the current incarnation of KDE. Oh good, I guessed correctly then


Also, what are profiles? eselect profiles list I picked one, but I have no idea what they do. Gentoo didn't have them before.
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John R. Graham
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Regarding profiles, the explanation is in the Handbook: Choosing the right profile. The explanation isn't hugely detailed, but it's enough to give you the idea.

- John
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Ticondriud
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 12:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

John R. Graham wrote:
Regarding profiles, the explanation is in the Handbook: Choosing the right profile. The explanation isn't hugely detailed, but it's enough to give you the idea.

- John


I see. I get that it sets things and does things for me...but that's what the MacOS does...and Windows. Is this why we don't have stage 1 tarballs anymore? I remember we had a framebuffer tool for selecting USE flags, but I don't remember what it was, nor does the handbook reference it anymore. It's so tedious going over the whole list and adding them to make.conf one at a time.
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Jaglover
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 12:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

app-portage/ufed
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Proinsias
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Might be of interest:
https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Sakaki%27s_EFI_Install_Guide
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Ticondriud
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 12:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jaglover wrote:
app-portage/ufed


I love you. Thank you so much. (goes to recheck his USE flags)
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eccerr0r
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's a lot of bad blood about systemd and even the devs frown on it, but it is there:

https://gentoo.org/downloads/

At the way bottom of the page, you can see there's a stage3 that's for systemd, below even "x32" which is a very weird configuration as well. Search for "stage archives" and look at the bottom of this list (amd64) just above the CD/DVD media section. This will save some effort in getting systemd going.
-> http://distfiles.gentoo.org/releases/amd64/autobuilds/20170908/systemd/stage3-amd64-systemd-20170908.tar.bz2 at the time of writing this post, this link will self destruct when the autobuilder runs again.

So... as of now:

ESP - don't do anything with it, except mkfs.fat or build a FAT filesystem (16, 32, vfat; but not exfat). When you install GRUB it will install on your ESP.

Looks like next step you'll be installing grub which will be the tricky part - and needed to get your system to boot from its own mass storage media.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Generally, you shouldn't need to be do that. Don't spend significant time pre-selecting USE flags. Pick a Portage profile consistent with how you want to use the system and trust that profile to get the USE flags close to what you will need. Install the packages you want. If you need some specific USE flag for a feature, enable it.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, when selecting a profile, make sure you use one with the features you need. This doubly goes for systemd which will make sure you get the USE flags automagically right for polkit and not install consolekit.

It's not required you use the systemd stage3, you can always convert. This is not the same as some of the others like libc to uclibc which I'm not even sure if it's possible to convert "hot" unlike systemd<->openrc.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 2:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ticondriud wrote:
John R. Graham wrote:
Regarding profiles, the explanation is in the Handbook: Choosing the right profile. The explanation isn't hugely detailed, but it's enough to give you the idea.

- John


I see. I get that it sets things and does things for me...but that's what the MacOS does...and Windows. Is this why we don't have stage 1 tarballs anymore? I remember we had a framebuffer tool for selecting USE flags, but I don't remember what it was, nor does the handbook reference it anymore. It's so tedious going over the whole list and adding them to make.conf one at a time.

I find it amusing that this thread is about the Handbook not being newbie-friendly enough and yet you're asking about stage 1 tarballs.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 6:15 am    Post subject: Re: Need Installation Process Clarity Reply with quote

Ticondriud wrote:
... I just read through a threadnought on here where some poor guy was just trying to make UEFI work and he was being led through a nightmare of configuration settings to get a basic component of a modern OS to work. ...

For UEFI, see the wiki articles listed in that wiki category: https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Category:UEFI. Forget about grub ( so you don't need a BIOS boot partition ) and use rEFInd instead.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 6:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

saboya wrote:
How is the handbook insufficient for a proper bootloader config?

https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Handbook:AMD64/Installation/Bootloader

Some points are listed here: https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Handbook_Talk:AMD64/Full/Installation#improve_suggested_partitions_and_use_of_grub-install
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the problem is that the handbook is no longer a story, rather it's now a choose your own adventure (then again, it always has been!)

Some people just want to read story and fill in the details as needed.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

eccerr0r wrote:
I think the problem is that the handbook is no longer a story, rather it's now a choose your own adventure (then again, it always has been!)

Some people just want to read story and fill in the details as needed.


I have a feeling most people on these forums preferred the books where you chose what the character did next.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The problem is with "Choose your own adventure" is that the outcome must still be the same: character must still win at the end.

But the choices taken along the way are not clear to the novice which path will lead to the desired goal. For the experienced installer, it's much more clear.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eccerr0r wrote:
The problem is with "Choose your own adventure" is that the outcome must still be the same: character must still win at the end.

But the choices taken along the way are not clear to the novice which path will lead to the desired goal. For the experienced installer, it's much more clear.
After my first install, I much preferred the Quickstart guide. A single page with just the pertinent details. Then again, I was a proponent of an installer, regardless if it could work for every possible architecture.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 5:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pjp,

Gentoo has an installer. Go to the bathroom and look in the mirror ... :)
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

saboya wrote:
Ticondriud wrote:
John R. Graham wrote:
Regarding profiles, the explanation is in the Handbook: Choosing the right profile. The explanation isn't hugely detailed, but it's enough to give you the idea.

- John


I see. I get that it sets things and does things for me...but that's what the MacOS does...and Windows. Is this why we don't have stage 1 tarballs anymore? I remember we had a framebuffer tool for selecting USE flags, but I don't remember what it was, nor does the handbook reference it anymore. It's so tedious going over the whole list and adding them to make.conf one at a time.

I find it amusing that this thread is about the Handbook not being newbie-friendly enough and yet you're asking about stage 1 tarballs.


Stage 1 -2 -3 made sense to me. Compiling the entire bootstrap and toolchain to the arch, optimizations, and USE flags in order made sense to me. The way I saw it was Bootstrap, Toolchain, System, Kernel, Bootloader, X11, KDE. Pretty much done. Now I find the Handbook jumps back and forth a lot and gives cursory explanations for new technologies.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 9:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Stage3 install was always simpler than the Stage1 install. What's more, it was always possible (easy, even) to achieve the exact same customization and optimization with a Stage3 install. The one advantage that the Stage1 install had is that it applied that optimization earlier in the process, saving some compile time. I believe the decision to eliminate the documentation of the Stage1 and Stage2 methods was driven by a desire to simplify the Handbook (thus reducing the maintenance and support load) plus the dramatic increase in CPU speed over the ensuing decade which effectively elimiated even the small advantage that the Stage1 method had.

Also, as far as I know, the Handbook has never covered the installation of X or KDE in detail. We do have pretty good guides in the Gentoo Wiki for those, though.

- John
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 9:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd like to add that the Gentoo install via the handbook is a perfectly simple copy/paste with minimal thought or understanding if you don't go chasing any of the extras mentioned in the handbook. Considerations like systemd or openRC can be decided on at a latter date once the system boots. There is no need to rush anything.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are still a lot of if then else branches in the handbook now... if you use EFI then this, else you're using MBR, then do that.

I was completely wondering the whole grub2 vs no grub2 (i.e. efibootmgr direct kernel boot). I would have thought it would be easier to just make everyone use grub2 since MBR users need grub2 anyway, and let the advanced users use direct kernel boot as an aside on a different page.

Perhaps even offering the systemd stage3 was a mistake too, since it can be converted later. I'm not sure why this is now offered as a stage3 option, other than to possibly attract people who actually want it? It adds another pre-install if-then-else, but I can see that it does save time for those who ultimately want systemd anyway.
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