SuSE 7.2

July 28, 2001 - SuSE 7.2 Personal

    Well, I did it. I got SuSE version 7.2. However, this time I didn't get the professional pack. I just didn't think that there was enough there to warrant the larger expense. Besides I want to try setting up the Network stuff more or less on my own. I have downloaded the missing items from their Web Site, or at least what I think is missing. We'll see as we go along here.

    The first thing that I tried to do was make sure that I have all my configuration files saved. I believe that I got them all. Side note here: kept getting a red letter message at boot up about the firewall. During my experimentation I had renamed the original firewall file in rc.config.d to have a .sav on it. Never put it back when I quit my experiments. Finally did and now I get a clean boot. Had to have everything clean before trying the new system.

    I am hoping that I can do an update and won't have to do a full setup. It is really to much to keep re-doing. There are ways to circumvent this and perhaps I should check into those first!? I more or less did but not successfully. Guess I don't know the right words to look for. At any rate, I am not patient enough to wait. Therefore, I am going to take the big plunge and try an update.

    Ok .. I was able to update my system. First note is that this version has correct loading of the task bar. I have it auto-hide and normal size. It came up in the correct place and correct size and stayed there!! The rest of the desktop looks the same. Didn't expect any real big differences. Well, it did put a new user for my logon's...sapdb. Don't know who or why??? yet.

    But .. there are problems. VMware doesn't work and my screen saver doesn't work. I have a script file which runs VMware in the background. I ran it in the foreground and got the message that "VMware was installed but not correctly configured for my running Kernel." Hmmmmm... Guess that means I have to do the setup again. But what about my already existing files?? I guess the thing to do would be to save them off and reload after I do another VMware config.

    Now the screen saver is another story. It goes into screen saver mode but does not blank the screen. It also does not recognize mouse movement. If I strike a key the screen flashes and I'm back to normal. So it is putting the system into suspended mode but not taking care of the screen. Bummer. I haven't re-booted yet so I am going to do that before I try to "fix " anything.

    Well .. the re-boot didn't fix VMware. Didn't fix the screen saver either. Matter of fact it made some changes that I was not expecting. It goes into screen saver mode and the only things that blank are the mouse cursor and the block cursor at the screen entry point. On top of that, I had not set it to ask for a password. It required one after going into screen saver mode. Guess they assumed that password protection would be enabled if you were using a screen saver. There was another little change .. now if I move the mouse it comes out of screen saver mode.

    Guess I need to get into YAST2 and check the settings and software that was selected. YAST2 came up fine with no problem.

1.)Printer settings look Ok.
2.)Sound is Ok. I got the initial jingle at sign on.
3.)Misc. They have a hardware list in here. Looks Ok.
4.)Software Loaded. Ooops they selected mesasoft. That was a display problem before. I deselected it.
   Cool. They selected the correct User/Hardware interface.
5.)Text/Utilities. Chuckle.. they have German ispell dictionary selected. Don't even have an English one!
6.)Xfree86 Driver. They have selected version 3. I thought that I was using version 4?.?.! Hmmmm.
   I checked the support DB and sure enough, there is a problem. It involves the    KDE base. There is a new kdebase.rpm file and I am getting it now.
7.)Mozilla didn't work. I had to re-install it to get a proper configuration.
   It runs BUT the icons and menus across the top are messed up.

*-*-* Whoaoaoo... *-*-* I just learned two things. Number one, I was using kernel 2.2.18 and the update put in version 2.4.4. Don't totally remember why I didn't use the 2.4 kernel other than it was more than I needed and there were some problems with other software that I was/am using. At any rate, the source for 2.2.19 was not included and there are changes/problems in using VMware with both that will require a re-compile. They say all bets are off for support if I re-compile the module myself .. but .. I have never really asked them for a lot of help anyway. A lot of this is my personal learning. So, here we go with the re-comps.
   You intend to install VMware 2.0.4 on SuSE Linux 7.2 and kernel version 2.4.4.
   You intend to use VMware with kernel version 2.2.19.

July 30, 2001

    Well, here it is Monday morning and I still don't have a proper operating system. Just once, just one time .. I would like an install to go smoothly when I follow the directions.

July 31, 2001 - SuSE 7.2 Professional

    Well, it was a bad idea. I'm sure someone else with a little more Linux knowledge and more time on their hands could pull off what I was trying. However, I don't have the time to dig into it any farther. I took the Personal version back and paid the extra for the Professional. I won't make that mistake again.

    My recovery was to set up my system as is was before. Guess I am experienced now. Only took me a couple of hours to redo my version 7.1 setup. I have some "real" work to finish before I can switch back to installing 7.2. But I will do it. What I have seen so far is very good and enlightening. I also think I want to move up to the 2.4 version. Linus got the USB working properly and I might be able to finally use my scanner in Linux.

August 03, 2001

    Ok.. this is a biggie. I couldn't log on to my P3 from the P2. I could see it in the network neighborhood but could not access it. (Similar to problem before) Now let's think. What changed? My P3 is no longer the server for one thing. For another I had to reload it when I created a fiasco with 7.2 Personal version. I removed the PlainText passwording in the registry. Then over on the P3 in smb.conf I set it to share. Also created an smbpasswd file from the passwd file. Hmmm.. Now I have a problem accessing Linux from VMware. Sometimes you just can't win!!
Ok. I had to enable password encryption in Samba. Then had to re-boot my Windows systems. I struggled over some changes before remembering that re-booting is always necessary in Windows.

    Days between . . . . I had some other words but they got lost in the crash mentioned below. Darn I had some good notes. Now they are gone. I'm on a Zip drive now!!

August 11, 2001 - DVD Disaster

    Well, I really blew it this time... Or somebody did. The Professional Version was/is a real disaster. I could not get a reliable load of SuSE Ver 7.2 on my P3. It would load various amounts of packages and then die. The first was at 508 then 525, 454 and finally 34. So I tried loading smaller amounts. I could piece meal the software in but could not get a full load. I even had it fail on the last package a number of times. (Yes, I am silly enough to keep trying.)

    Then I made my biggest mistake. I tried to give SuSE the benefit of the doubt. I thought that maybe by some chance my DVD in the P3 had decided to go bad at the same time I was loading this new version. Besides, I was able to load version 7.0 on my P2 before when I could not load it on the P3. So, I tried it on the P2. Yep, it loaded up just fine. Never died. Then I did a re-boot. All hell broke loose. I spent days trying to get my P2 back into working order. I wanted to save some files that I did not have a back up for. One of them was this document. I had made notes about my problems and stupidly did not back them up before trying the new SuSE on my P2... Where I was documenting, of course. This, along with some other crashes led me to disaster recovery seeking. I have had enough times of crashing and loosing data that I decided something had to be done. After all was said and done I spent another $179.00 for EasyRecovery by Ontrack. I recommend them for Windows and DOS recoveries. They will let you "try out" their software so to speak. The trial version will only let you find your missing data. You don't get to recover it till you pay some money. Which is only fair.

    After many restarts and switches between YAST1 and YAST2 I was finally able to get a running version 7.2 of SuSE on my P3. Well, sorta running. I still like SuSE. However, this is the worst version I have had to fight with. When the desktop is presented it doesn't have both of my CD's and none of my Windows drives. I looked in the fstab and only the CD-ROM was there. The DVD was not. Also none of the Windows drives were listed. .. .. well now, I'm going to see if I've learned anything over the past few months. I'm gona try to make this a workable system. No I'm not ... I need to get back to real work and leave this for later .. or .. never. To many things that didn't work. This was a release to soon as far as I'm concerned. Perforce didn't get loaded and started properly. They made lots of improvements on the graphics and it all looks pretty but the operation sure missed out. Maybe version 7.3 will be better.

SuSE 7.2 Personal Version
  • Updated my 7.1 version without crashing or dying.
  • It could not handle VMware properly.
  • Lacked Networking. Thought what I had or could get would work. (Didn't - my fault)
  • Due to lack of time I could not continue with this version.
SuSE 7.2 Professional Version.
  • Failed right off in the Update at package 508.
  • Tried to do a full install. Failed at 525.
  • Again with a full load and failed at 454.
  • Another time and it failed at 34.
  • Numerous other attempts with YAST1 & YAST2. Half way successful but not good.
  • Perforce failed to load and start properly.
I'm a die hard. Trying again. I thought that I had tried the individual CD's in one of my previous attempts but those notes are gone. That's why I was taking them. My memory is not the greatest sometimes. So I have done a re-load of version 7.1 with Development, Networking, Media and KDE 2. I have it working and it has both of my CD's and shows the Windows HD's.
It wants to update 539 packages. (I'm using YAST2)
  • Need to do an update with YOU for my nVidia card.
  • Ok Update started. Now it says 658 packages.???
  • Made it to the Preparing to re-boot. Clicked on re-boot.
  • OK. It re-booted and is asking for CD 2.... continuing.
  • Well made it past 508... and it is asking for CD 3.... continuing.
  • Made it past 525.
  • Up to 634 and asking for CD 4... continuing.
  • At 651 asks for CD 5... it finished loading all packages.
  • Clicked on OK and it is finishing installation.
  • Installation file looked ok except at the "Processing index files of all man pages..."
    got 10 "fopen: no such file or directory" messages.
  • Hooray!!! It quit installation and came up with a graphical login. Has that extra user like Personal Version had.
  • Good again. I logged in as myself and the desktop came up with both CD's and all of the Windows drives. Task bar was also in the correct position.
  • Now for the acid test. Can I shutdown and restart???
  • YES!!!! I have what I expected from SuSE. Must be something wrong with their DVD versions.
Now I can get things setup again. We're not out of the woods yet. Still haven't tried my VMware or the networking but at least I have a working version 7.2. Wonder if I will have to load 7.1 and then update with the CD's if I screw things up and have to reload this again. Hope not. I'll just try to keep things cool. (Most of all I haven't wasted my $75.00 ) Right now it is late at night and I need to get some sleep.

August 13, 2001

    Well, it was late the last time I was on here and I thought that things were good. Unfortunately, they are not. Once again they have changed locations of the devices. However, in the update it did not correct the fstab. I sorta found this out during the above adventures but I was hoping that the update would take care of things. Not so.

    Ok it is not as bad as it looked. Appears that the only devices that are confused are the DVD and the CD-ROM. Now my CD is a re-writable one. They have:

          cdrom -> /media/cdrom
          I moved /dvd and /cdrecorder into /media
          Then I created a link to each in the root.
          cdrecorder -> /media/cdrecorder
          dvd -> /media/dvd
          Over in /dev it looks like they are going
          to the correct devices.
          The fstab also appears to be correct .. now.
Alright!! I can mount and read both the CD-ROM and the DVD. Looks like I have a working system again. Course I still need to get VMware and my intranet going. But later...I'm going to bed.

August 15, 2001

    Allllrighty.... I got the VMware that was shipped with the 7.2 package to load up and work just fine. I am even able to use my old disk files. So I am back in business. My local intranet is also working and all machines can access the outside world. I read in the support database that I might have to re-compile my kernel, but I didn't. This is out of the box... via the CD's that is, and not the DVD.

    I also used Y.O.U. to get everything up-to-date. Looks and works great so far.

August 17, 2001 - Team Member

    Now I have a big decision. I got a reply from the SuSE team on my troubles and they would like some more information. Now the only way I can get that info is to go through this whole mess again. Now I have it all setup. Hmmmm... In order to be a member of the team I should reload it. Now in order to really duplicate it I need to re-load my 7.1 first and then try the update from the DVD. When it fails I need to look at two other consoles for messages. This is done by using CTL-ALT-F3 and CTL-ALT-F4.

    Ok it is Friday, I'll have all week-end to do it and I "won't" try it on this machine! This is where I will be documenting. In addition I have a machine to use for my work that I have to get done before Monday. So while I am waiting for the other events to take place on the P3 machine I can work on this P2 machine. First I will make sure that I have all the files that are important backed up.

Now in order to have this the way it was, or close to it I need to make the same selections. This includes:
Default with Office
Kernel 2.2.18
KDE2 packages
Commercial Software:
Select Single:
a - unchanged
ap - dumped:
alien, apmd, bonnie, cdcons, cdda2wav, cdrdao, dds2tar, ed, fbset, filters, gstransf, jed, joe, joev, mc, mg, pbm2I7k, pico, raidtools, screen, unrar
ap - added:
unarj, wdiff, sitar, statserial, mmv, makedev, iodbcadm
aplx - unchanged
beo - unchanged
d - dumped: bwbasic, g77, gpc, linclude, lx_sus24, nasm - added: lx_sus22
doc - unchanged
emacs - unchanged
emu - unchanged
fun - dumped: tuxeyes - added: xpinguin, xteddy
gnm - unchanged
gra - unchanged
ham - unchanged
kde2 - unchanged
kde - unchanged
kpa - unchanged
n - dumped:
amanda, appindex, archie, authldap, bitchx, bulkmail, calamaris, ckermit, deliver, diald, faxprint, fetchmail, fetchmailconf, gettyps, gkermit, hylafax, i4l, i4lfirm, inetcfg, irda, jakarta, junkbuster, majorcoo, marsnwe, mdomo, mserver, netatalk, nn, pine, radiusclient, radiusd-cistron, slip, slrn, squid2, strn, suck, tin, tleds, trn, vacation, w3m, w3mir, wpm, wvdial, xplog, xrn, yaps
perl - unchanged
sec - added: gfcc
sgm - unchanged
snd - added: xmix
spl - dumped: igerman
tcl - unchanged
tex - unchanged
x - unchanged
x3d - dumped: mesasoft, mesadev
xap - dumped: calctool, coolmail, xawtv - added: LinNeighborhood, vnc
xdev - unchanged
xsrv - unchanged
xv - unchanged
xwm - unchanged
yast - unchanged
Custom LILO - to boot disk MBR
Filled in name, userid and passwords. Says 1938 MB of software is to be installed.
Started install at 1:35pm - at 2:00pm it wants to re-boot. Ok I clicked yes.
Now we have the Video setup. XFree86 4 module: nv - I selected 1280 x 960, 65K colors.
NO 3D. Need different drivers for that.
Clicked on test and made the adjustments, then clicked on next.
It goes about finishing.
It finishes and I am presented with System component configuration. First item is the printer which I don't connect to this machine anymore. I have a color printer and none of the Linux/Unix drivers will handle color for it. So I moved it to the P2.

    Next item is the sound card. I have a Sound Blaster card and it detected it just fine. The sound card settings were saved.

    Next the Network. I have two cards and it see them both. At this time I am only using one of them. I'm not using this PC as a router anymore. I purchased a small router box with which to connect all 3 PC's to the Cable network. It recognized both cards and I was able to setup my system. Then I clicked on finish and it came up to the graphical logon screen. Now I can finish my personalizations. Time 2:23pm.

    Ok this was a from scratch install, so to speak. The partitions were re-formatted and the software was loaded. Now this fresh install and when it came up it had both my CD-ROM and my DVD for selection on the DeskTop. In addition it also had the 3 Win98 drives for selection. I copied in my .alias, .function, .xinitrc and the .vmware. No to re-boot and see if it comes ups alright. It did.

    Networking is ok as far as connecting to the Internet. My inside network is another story. I'm not going to worry about that yet.

    Configured VMware and installed my software. All is working ok. Now I need to setup Samba and fstab. This should be enough to prove and/or show the point. Now I am going to try to update to SuSE version 7.2 by using the DVD.

    Re-booted with the DVD in drive. It came up with some selections and I chose install. This caused a lot of action and then I got a selection box. I chose update. It made some checks and then gave the option to create backups. I said OK. Now I get a choice on which type of update. I want the one with add new features. Clicked next and it evaluated. Got a message box stating that says something is interfering or missing. That's cool. One or the other. Version 7.1 didn't complain??? Must be a selection from the new version. It says that unixODBC interferes with iodbcadm, libiodbc and libiodbc-devel. The question is do I want to install unixODBC which will cause a problem. NO. Now I'm told that I should install it anyway cause it is needed by other packages..?? Go figure!! Ok so I said yes. There were five other items that I had to manually decide on. autofs, koffice, koffice-devel, kradio and kstocks. I don't want the radio or stocks.

    So now, I clicked on next and it said that it was going to update 680 packages and the base was included. It rebuilds the RPM DB. It also increased the update count to 699. 5:15pm. 5:37Pm or earlier it appears to have "died". 306 packages were updated and it appears that the last one was koffice. Got 25% of that, 43% of the update was done and 33% of the disk has been used. I can move the mouse cursor around.

    Now to try those keys for them ... Did CTRL+ALT+F3 .. nothing happened except now I can't move the mouse cursor. Just for completeness I tried CTRL+ALT+F4 .. nothing. The Keyboard is dead as it was in the past. This requires a PowerDown reset. (don't have a reset button). This attempt was with YAST2. I am going to restart it and try YAST1... still using the DVD.

    Ok it went through the restart and I got to the question on the type of installation. I'm going to select the update. I selected the root partition and it said that it was not cleanly unmounted and is doing a check. Same for the /opt partition. Same for /boot. When finished with that it checks the packages and then says that some were not installed during the last session. (No kidding) At any rate, I am going to say yes install them. Did some back up and then claimed that 45 packages were going to be updated. Doesn't seem like enough but we'll see how it goes. Alrighty, it died on number 34, perl. I will try the special keys. There is no cursor cause we are in text mode. CTRL+ALT+F3 got the following results:

        Remount of / success
        Winsize (25 by 82)!
        lxrc_init:466 text_mode_ig = 0
        lxrc_init:467 yast2_update_ig = 0
        lxrc_init:468 auto_ig = 0
        lxrc_init:469 yast_version_ig = 0
        lxrc_init:470 guru_ig = 0
        CPU: 6, Memory: 425910272, New kernel
        /dev/hda: Maxtor 5T040H4
        /dev/hdd: SAMSUNG DVD-ROM SD-608
        Executing: "insmod nvram "
        Using /modules/nvram.o
        Executing: "insmod 8390 "
        Using /modules/8390.o
        set_font:675 has_fb = 1
        Executing: "setfont lat1-16.psfu -m none"
        Executing: "setfont lat1-16.psfu -m none"
        Executing: "setfont lat1-16.psfu -m none"
        Executing: "setfont lat1-16.psfu -m none"
        Executing: "setfont lat1-16.psfu -m none"
        set_font:696 err = 0
        lxrc_init:564 color_ig = 1
        Executing: "loadkeys"
        Loading /kbd/keysmps/
        Setting up localhost...done
        starting "/sbin/YaST"
Now trying CTRL+ALT+F4:
        hdd: lost interrupt
That's all it said but it was scrolling and putting out line after line of the above. Could have been some other messages at the top.
Going to try CTRL+ALT+DEL to restart and use the manual again. This time if it hangs I will try the CTRL+ALT+F4 first. Ok CTRL+ALT+DEL worked for the reset. Ok it is going through the same disk checking again. Said there were 44 to update. This time it finished but it had an error.
"   Can't get PREIN for /var/adm/mount/suse/a1/lilo.rpm (1)"
It was updating rc.config when this happened.

I let the installation continue and it did all the operations. When it finally came to rest it was at a command line prompt in the fancy install Windows. I tried to sign on as root and it had problems. Couldn't find a lot of items. Doesn't surprise me, the package counts don't add up. So I am going to do a flat out new install from the DVD and when it dies I will use the CTRL+ALT+F4 first.

    Ok I started it again doing a from scratch install. Formatting the partitions. I am selecting default with no office so it will hurry up and fail I can get on with this. Installing 388 packages. Failed at 291, Netscape. Using CTRL+ALT+F4.


        cdrom: open failed.
        Nonvolatile memory driver v1.1
        cdrom: open failed
        Aug 17 18:42:32 (none) syslogd 1.3-3: restart.
        Adding swap: 136040k swap-space (prority-1)
        Adding swap: 136040k swap-space (prority-2)
        hdd: lost interrupt
        hdd: lost interrupt
        hdd: lost interrupt
Ok... enough of this. I am going to put my 7.1 in and then do the update with the CD's instead of the DVD. Now I "can use" the 7.1 DVD... all the way for a full load. Which is just what I did. Now I can use the CD's to update my system to 7.2.

    Even though it works, the CD update goes kinda strange. It says that it is only updating 47 packages. Then it comes back and says a bunch didn't get loaded. Starts of with CD 2 and then just puts out the name of CD 3, 4, 5, 6 and says it is done. Ok so we continue on and it comes back and wants the other CD's. We get those loaded and finally I have a 7.2 system... again.

August 18, 2001

    Well, the day is started off using Y.O.U. to get the latest updates for SuSE 7.2. Had minor problem here. I was watching progress from afar and when I looked over it appeared that the dialogs were trying to change, but they were taking a long time. What it really was, the machine had went into suspension. I had the screen saver on which doesn't work correctly till it is updated with one of the patches that I am now loading.

    Ok. We are back in operation. Now need to get my Network back. I do believe that one of the items necessary is a re-boot on the systems. Windows always needs a re-boot.

    Well, it appears that I need a re-boot. Now I can not get my networking to work. I can see them in the neighborhood but can not access them. Correction, I can see them via the Windows Neighborhood but NOT the Linux Neighborhood. I still can not access the files on either one. This is getting to be a pain in the @#$. Ok now .. I setup plain text passwords and share. It works!! Done for now. Guess that I have a lot more to learn about this networking. Need to concentrate on the security part.

September 21, 2001 - KDE 2.2

    Been a long break. Had to work so I can pay for this. The main changes during this time period were only updates to KDE 2.2. That was around the end of August. They still haven't fixed the screen saver portion. I'm using Xscreensaver. It is really better in one area. It rotates through the various screen patterns that you have selected. I'll have to check if the KDE version does this or not. Don't remember seeing that capability. Ok .. I read the menu. It has a random feature that will cycle through the savers that you have on file.

    However, there is another new version of KDE 2.2 as of Sept 16th. I'm going to bring it down and install it to see if they have fixed the screen saver. Haven't seen any updates to SuSE lately. No, that's a lie. They do have a couple of updates for WindowMaker but I don't use that one. And the have a version of shlibs5 to bring down cause some commercial packages require it.

    I guess I should say why I have been so interested in getting this confounded screen saver. Mainly to save my screens. Makes sense don't it? I have the other so why pushing to hard for the KDE version?? One big factor. If I have the screen saver setup in KDE, it will activate no matter what mode I'm in..(except for VMware). I get interrupted a lot, either for home activities or just to keep my wife happy. Hmmm...guess those are both the same. Or I want to watch a NASCAR race while I'm working. Besides ... I just want it to work!!

    Oh coolness!!! It works!! I'll probably have to get the updates to kde22 7.1 now. I'm using 7.1 at work.

September 29, 2001 - Oracle 2

    #*#* Special Note: #*#* On installation after installing SuSE 7.3 there are a couple of more quirks.
First one is: You need to install bindutil from SuSE 7.2.
Second one is: During the DB install when it gets to the point where it is doing some links it will complain. Ignore these errors .. 6 or 7 of them. You can let it try to create a DB or not. Either way one will not be created.
Third one: After exiting the DB installer, install the patch. You need to untar it in the oracle home dir and then execute the setup script. This will among other things complete those operations that I told you to ignore.
(The patch is from Oracle. glibc-2.1.3-stubs.tar.gz - go to   There are more 7.3 specific notes further down.

Back to old notes:
Lots and lots been happening. During the past fiascoes I never did get Oracle reloaded. I am going to attempt that now. Hopefully, taking more notes this time!! I am going to get Oracle working but I am also going to get CISAM going too. I still believe that CISAM is faster than relational databases on most of the operations that I am involved with. However, a lot of the corporations that I need/want to work for are strong on the relational.

    Ok I did review my meager notes above and I checked out the items that are supposed to be loaded. I had to load up the Perl-GD. (from the 'Perl' package) Had the other one in there. (the plain gd from the 'd' package)

    Also consulted the SuSE Web site to see if there was anything special. In addition to the unset LANG they are also recommending unset LC_TYPE and RC_TYPE. Here is a real strange one .. you must have your NUMLOCK key off or the install buttons don't work!!

    Instead of repeating everything that they said ... I have included a copy of the pages of interest from SuSE.

    Oracle 8.1.7     Oracle 8x Common

    Hmmm. Started this so long ago I don't know whether or not I have the OPS option in the Oracle version 8.1.7 that I downloaded. I don't really think so cause I had to look it up. It is "Oracle Parallel Server". It is an option and right now I don't think that I want it.

    According to the Readme in the patch, it doesn't get applied until after the the install. The reason for the patch is because of library differences. glibc-2.1.3 vs glibc-2.2

    Oh but alas .. there is now an Oracle 9i that probably won't need the patch. Need to read more on the web and see if I'm correct. It will mean a big download .. again. Ok .. I read the docs. They developed the Oracle Linux version using SuSE 7.1. There was a kernel update and it just so happens that the update is in 7.2. So I guess that I am gona have a big down load. Even on cable this takes a long time. ... Well.. I don't have to worry about that. I don't have enough memory to install 9i. Always a day late and a dollar short!! Continuing on with 8.1.7.

    Now I have this book. "Oracle8i for Linux Starter kit". It came with 8.1.6 and I upgraded to 8.1.7. Now I have only been really successful in getting this installed and usable once. Due to time and other problems I haven't accomplished that again. This time I have time.

Oracle Setup:

    First there are some preliminary steps. You must set up an Oracle user and various environment variables. They are all listed in the book. I'm sure that they are also somewhere in the Oracle docs. Once these are setup then you can start the loading of Oracle from the CD. I am signed on as oracle and I have the CD-ROM mounted. Now, theoretically, all I have to do is run ./runinstaller. I placed an unset LANG in a profile.local so that I won't have to worry about it. The other two mentioned are not set in my version of all this.

    Important items during the install: (SuSE has tried to be helpful in creating the oracle user. However, what was created was not correct for the exercises in the book. I removed their user oracle. They also created the dba group. I left it and used it. Also notice that opt is used rather than usr.)

        Operating system:
        	groupadd sysdba
        	groupadd sysoper
        	groupadd oinstall
        	userdel -r oracle
        	useradd oracle -d /opt/oracle -g oinstall -G sysdba,sysoper,dba -m
        	passwd oracle
        	chmod 755 /opt/oracle
        	cd /opt
        	mkdir oraInventory
        	chown oracle.oinstall oraInventory
        Environment: (At this point it is primarily for the Oracle user.)
        	export DISPLAY=localhost:0.0;
        	export ORACLE_BASE=/opt/oraInventory;
        	export ORACLE_HOME=/opt/oracle;
        	export ORACLE_SID=oralin;
        	export PATH=$PATH:$ORACLE_HOME/bin:$ORACLE_HOME/buildtools/bin;
        	export TNS_ADMIN=$ORACLE_HOME/network/admin;
        	export ORA_NLS33=$ORACLE_HOME/ocommon/nls/admin/data;
        	export CLASSPATH=.:$ORACLE_HOME/jdbc/lib/;
        	export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=$ORACLE_HOME/lib;
Make sure you have a /usr/local/java directory.

    Sign on as user oracle if you are not there already.

    Got the latest updates as they suggested. Now I need to do it. I fired it off and answered the questions as it was installing. It got to a point where it was creating a database which, according to the instructions from the patch file, I was not supposed to allow it. Well, it was in progress so I let it go. However, it came up and said it was having trouble. I clicked on abort and it abandoned the DB creation. I will create it after the patch is installed... like they wanted.

    Well, guess what?? It didn't work. Got the same errors. Now the last time I tried this I had to set all the dirs involved to 755. I'll check and do that now. Hmmm they all have 755 or higher. Ok let's try one more time.... How 'bout that??!! It worked. These computers can be so #@%* frustrating at times...!

Database creation completed.
        Database Information:
          global database name:  oralin.trcomputing
          database system identifier (SID):  oralin
          SYS account password:  change_on_install
          SYSTEM account password:  manager
trcomputing is my own domain on my personal computer. Naturally you will have to use one of your own.
   The database is created using dbassist from the bin dir of /usr/oracle.


The following were/are primarily for my SuSE 7.3


  • Create a database. (only choice if this is first time)
  • Typical or Custom. (I chose typical)
  • You are given choice of copying from the CD or creating a new one. (I chose create a new one.)
  • You are given the choice of database types: I chose Multipurpose.
    Other choices: OnLine Transaction Processing and Data Warehousing.
  • Now you are asked for the number of users. If you selected OLTP and now select more than 20 users, Oracle multi-threaded server will be enabled.
  • Next is the options you want to use. I chose the defaults.
  • Next you are asked for a DB name. Remember that name you tried to used during DB installation? It didn't get created so you can use it now.
  • Now we get to a create now or later. I have had trouble here before. This is where it says it can't save the script and some other files. This is where I set the areas concerning the DB to 755 permisions. Ok I'm going to try it first. I'm going to do the create and not save the script. You are warned that it will take some time. That's ok as long as it creates one.
  • Well it failed on the first operation. Couldn't find orapwd.
  • Since it took me back to create or save script I decided to save the script. It lets you select the dir and name to save it in and I picked /opt/oracle/ But it came back and told me it was gona save it as /opt/oracle/assistants/dbca/ ... so why did they ask in the first place??
  • Hmmmm. Didn't save it and it complained about orapwd again. Appears to be something concerning the oracle working directory.
  • Well the reason it couldn't fine orapwd is: It is named orapwdO for some reason. I also saw a bunch of other file in the /opt/oracle/bin dir that had a 'O' on the end. Some but not all have a counter part without the 'O'. Well, I'm gona take a chance and link the 'O' names to ones without so then I will have both.
  • Well, it got further but had a problem with the DB not being open. I aborted. However, some of the previous DB got created cause during the create is said the files existed. I said delete them. Which is what I will do no my next try after I find out what went wrong this time.
  • Ran it again and this time I had it save the script. That way I don't have to go through all those questions again and again. Or at least I think it will work that way.
  • Well it is getting segmentation faults when it tries to execute svrmngrl. Now I didn't link this one. It already had a counter part. Wonder if I should anyway?? Hmmmm.. I'm gona.
  • This time in the start of dbassist I was given the option to delete.. I did.
  • Well that was worse, so I am putting svrmgrl back the way it was. In fact I put them all back the way they were except orapwd.
  • Nope but it got farther. Failed on the listener. So I will link lsnrctlO to lsnrctl.
  • Allllrighty... the only two I had to change were orapwd and listener.

    Now then, the database has been created and loaded... But .. it is not running. In fact the only way you can even try to do anything is if you sign on as the oracle user. I tried to use sqlplus from my area and it didn't recognize the command. Now, signed on as oracle it at least understands the sqlplus command. However, I received a message stating that "Oracle was not available". A CTL-D will get you out of sqlplus at this point and back to the command line. Normally in sqlplus you would enter EXIT or QUIT to exit.

September 30, 2001

    Note for 7.3: In this one sqlplus was/is sqlplusO. I did the link to get sqlplus.
Ok now, we need to start the DB. First sign on as the oracle user and then enter sqlplus. At the "Enter user-name:" enter sys/oracle as sysdba. This will get you into an SQL session. Now if you setup everything as mentioned above, just enter:
   STARTUP OPEN PFILE=$ORACLE_HOME/dbs/initoralin.ora;
Well, I guess that everything wasn't done correctly for 7.3. It didn't create the control files. I'll have to investigate that now. Well part of the reason was .. evidently some things got started cause I found a lot of oracle stuff running. Killed it all and just for good measure did a re-boot.

Running dbassist again. During this run I got a question that I'll swear I didn't get before. Wants me to select the mode in which I want the server to run. Choices are: Dedicated Server mode and Shared Server mode. Because I am the only user I am specifying Dedicated.
Another new screen: After the options select screen it asked for the DB name and SID. It has done this before, but this time it told me what the name of the initialization file will be. Hmmmmm.
Well, now .. another new screen. This one is talking about the control files and giving their names!!
But yet another new screen: This one is letting me review the system table space and allowing me to make any neccessary changes. I'm making none. This screen has tabs to various pieces of info.
Must be creating a DB this time. I got another new screen. This one lists the redo log files.
Another one. Talks about the Checkpoint.
Another one. Talks about the SGA.
I think I must have made a wrong selection somewhere.. but maybe not. Another screen: this one lists the trace files.
Finally the 'Create database now?'.... But if failed on 'interMedia' again. But I got a new message. It was telling me that it couldn't open the DB. Now it is saying 'Oracle not available.' So I aborted the creation again. However, this last one has shown me a lot.
Ok. I'm gona save the script again and run it separately. I get more messages and info when I run it.
Well, I got a segmentation fault on svrmrgl. This is one that has both types. Just for grins I am gona save the one and link the other.
Well, that made a difference. Before It zipped thru the creation the they had said was gona take a few minutes. I thought it was fast cause of my new P4 machine. Not the case. Just didn't have the correct execution files. I stopped the process cause it looked like it was hung up in 'Add Advanced Rep'. Also wanted to try to time the operation. That was a mistake. Now I have the DB all screwed up!! Shut everything down and re-booted. I was able to delete the old DB.
Oky-Doky. It finished and took about an hour + or - 10 to 15 minutes. I got to doing something else and didn't see when it finished.

    Now then we should have a DB running. If not repeat the step up above.

    If you did everything correctly you will have a DB up and running. In order to shut it down, you again must be in sqlplus and enter:
You can use NORMAL, IMMEDIATE, TRANSACTIONAL or ABORT as an argument to SHUTDOWN command if so desired. Normal is the default.
There is one more part in starting Oracle. The TNS. You need to start the listener. It does not automatically start with Oracle. This command is executed from the command line. This command is:
   lsnrctl START
STOP and STATUS are two more args that you can use for this.

MultiThreaded Server:

    Well, as usual I did what the book said and it didn't work. This was the section on enabling MTS which is MultiThreaded Server. I will investigate that more later. Could be because the book is designed for 8.1.6 and I am using 8.1.7 but I really doubt it. (Think I didn't have enough users and didn't specify the DB creation correctly on the last install. On this one I noticed the different modes.)

October 01, 2001

    Now as for the startup, you can set parameters that will cause Oracle to start running at system startup. However, I don't really want that. I do, however, want it to shutdown automatically. So I altered the script so that it won't start it but will stop it. There is a file in /etc called oratab that contains a line $ORACLE_SID:$ORACLE_HOME:(Y|N). It really doesn't look like that. The values are naturally translated into what you are using on your system. The final value on that line states whether you want automatic startup or not. I believe that it has to be yes even if you only want auto shutdown like I do. By the way, you can have more than one DB running and if you want autostart on all, they all have to be listed in oratab. (oracle table)

    The script to execute is called dbora. You will be basically signing on as Oracle and starting the DB and TNS operations. Info is in the book. Once this script is written you will have to create the appropriate symbolic links in the /etc/rc.d directory.

October 01, 2001

    Well, as usual I am changing what I did. The above was good for learning but I am using the files that came in orarun8i.rpm for SuSE. There are really only some minor changes.
One of the changes is in /etc/profile.d that will set the Oracle environment vars at boot time. Not sure if I like their startup but for now I will use it. I commented out the startup anyway. All I want is the auto shutdown. (dbora vs oracle script). linked as K10oracle and S40oracle in /etc/rc.d/rc2.d and /etc/rc.d/rc3.d
Another change was to put /usr/local/bin/oraenv in .bashrc. This will set up the environment and ask which SID you want to use. (I'm using oralin.)

    Ok. The DB is installed. Now in continuing, the book wants you to use this user scott. Well, I want to be myself. So I jumped ahead and found out how to create a user. Then when I couldn't do anything I had to jump further and find out how to grant myself privileges. I believe that I can now finish the lessons as myself. If not I'll have to find out why ... which is what I am doing anyway.

    Well, I have a problem right off the bat. The first thing to do was run a script that is specific to this chapter (chap 4). I did that and then decided that I wanted to be me. So I was in and out of the DB while I was figuring out how to make myself a user. I tried to do a select on the DB for the orders and it said it was not there. Think that I was supposed to stay in till the lesson was finished. I don't think that the SQL script did a commit. Hmmm. Bad guess they did do some commits... but the main thing was that I had to stay in. The commits that they made must not have been what I thought. At any rate I can list the items in the order table after running the chap04.sql script again.

October 03, 2001

    I went through the exercises for chapter 4 and played around with the SQL. Got out of the DB, shutdown the 'puter and went to bed. I fire it up today and the tables for chapter 4 are not there. Now I need to find out why.

October 04, 2001 - Toad & Tora

    Spent a lot of time yesterday investigating the above and getting some other tools. I now have a tool similar to Toad on Windows. It is called Tora. I also got some scripts that will help show items when all you have is sql.
I had a bit of a problem installing Tora. It kept complaining about needing 4 libs. Two of them were associated with the client and the other two were just Linux libs. I looked and they were there... but rpm install couldn't find them. I just did a --nodeps and the package installed AND worked. Go figure.

    Now in all of this I did find that the tables from the chap04 exercises are still there. I just have to bring them in the correct way. Ok, ok. Guess that I don't know as much as I thought I did. At any rate, the script for chap04 created a USER named PRATICE04 with a PASSWORD of password!! I was trying to look at it all wrong. Well, it was something learned ... and on my own. The other good thing about this is, I can now access the practice04 tables from Toad in Windows. Coolness . I now have a functioning DB system.

    Alrighty now. I have created a database, a user chuck, roundaboutly a user practice04 and some tables via practice04. Now I need to find out how to give chuck access to those tables. I believe that I will have to be system and grant the accesses. Hmmmm. Well, I granted access to chuck but I had to be practice04 in order to do it. Or at least so it seemed. Possibly could have been cause I didn't specify "practice04.orders". I'll test/check it again during chap05. Also found that there is a set command. Used it to make the display 132 columns wide so the output would quit wrapping and getting hard to read. (set linesize 132)

    Now in exercise 5.6, they have you enter a new item in the parts list. I did this and looked at the DB via Toad in Windows. The new part didn't show. Didn't think it would cause I had not performed a commit. I went back to Linux SQL and performed the commit. I could then bring it up in Toad in Windows.

October 05, 2001

    Allllrighty now. I just switched over to the new VMware ver 3.0. The installation/upgrade went real smooth. In fact I don't see any real difference at this point. Hope there are some improvements. I was having some problems accessing my floppy disk and I kept getting this message "Failed to grab KB and mouse input from the X server" when I minimized VMware. Hmmmm just checked. That is still happening. However, it appears the the floppy is working ok now. At least at first grins.

October 10, 2001 - CD Read/Write

    Ok let's try that setup for writing to the CD's. I got the latest cdrecord and xcdroast. The later is a GUI for the former. I got the latest of both. Mainly cause xcdroast insisted that I get the latest version of cdrecord. Had to compile and install cdrecord. Also had to compile xcdroast. This required another package, imlib-devl, to be loaded from my SuSE CD's.

    Ok, got them compiled and installed in /opt/schily. When I fired up xcdroast it complained that I needed SCSI support. I thought that it was there already. Either I didn't say yes to the right install option or/and SuSE doesn't install it by default. That would be kinda senseless, but I've seen lots of software senselessly installed!!

    Made changes to modules.conf and lilo.conf according to the HOW-to. Also had to change boot.local. ... Well, so far I am not successful. Why is this so damn hard??? Probably cause I don't really understand what I am doing!!


  • In fstab I made only one device for the CD. The cdrecorder.
  • In /dev I removed cdrom. Only have cdrecorder linked to scd0.
  • added in lilo.conf - append hdc=ide-scsi mas_scsi_luns=1
  • performed: /sbin/modprobe ide-scsi
  • added /sbin/modprobe ide-scsi to /etc/init.d/boot.local
  • linked cdrecorder to /dev/scd0
  • ... it works ... at least for reading.
  • need to do something about an sg0 ???
I spent some time tracking down why I was getting this group of messages in my xconsole window everytime I did a cdrecord -scanbus command. What it turns out to be is: the scanbus is checking ALL possible scsi devices. In this case I have ide-scsi setup. During the original install I enabled parallel port ide operations. One set of these is the pgx group (where x is 0,1,2,3). These are the ATAPI generic devices. I don't have anything connected to them so I will see the message complaints about them. I was using my parallel port zipdrive on this machine. I have since taken it off and connected it to my other PC. I now access it through my network. paride_protocol is for the Paralle Port IDE. The messages produced are NOT errors in my current setup for the CD-RW. (Got another ZIP and problem gone.)

    Ok I got cdrecord and xcdroast to work but I haven't written to a CD yet. Unfortunately, xcdroast doesn't handle multi-sessions. I found this other one .. CD-Rchive. It claims to do the multi-sessions. Why is this important?? Because with multi-sessions you can write some data to a disk today and then write some more tomorrow. Without multi-sessions you have to write it all at once. I spent a little time getting it installed. Had to figure out his script so I could setup the correct values. Finally got it installed and I called up the interface. So far looks good, but I will test it tomorrow. It's late and I'm going to bed.

    Side note first. It took a little bit of time for me to figure this out cause of the way the problem was stated in the error message.
  checking for QT... error: (libraries) (Qt2 > beta 2.1) not found. please check on correct.
(Now those are not the exact words but I'm not gona screw it up just to get the correct ones. It's close.) Well I had the correct libraries installed. It wasn't clear at first on how he was checking the version. I had to set some vars and one of them was $QTDIR. This was /usr/lib/qt on my system. Dirs qt2 and qt3 were also there. I thought that they were linked but it also looked like he was looping through all the dirs checking for a 2. I finally changed /usr/lib/qt to /usr/lib/qt2 and then it installed with no problem. .. Something wrong with my thinking. I need to read these error messages and interpret them a different way.

Remote Printer Access

    Ok now I'm trying to get my Linux system to access the printer over on the PII. I moved it over to that PC cause my wife uses it and it was simpler to set things up over there. However, it is a Win98 machine. I am going to have to go thru Samba to print. Now according to the books and my feeble memory, it shouldn't be all that hard... shouldn't be.
Note: This all changed in 7.3 ... naturally.

    The following was "borrowed" from FreeBSD . Take a look at their docs for more info.

8.7.4 Filters

    The last two important printcap capabilities concern print filters, if (input filter) and of (output filter) If defined, incoming print jobs are run through the filters that these entries point to for further processing.
Filters are the reason that the UNIX print spooling system is so much more powerful than any other commercial server operating system. Under FreeBSD, incoming print jobs are acted on by any filters specified in the /etc/printcap no matter where they originate. Incoming print jobs from remote Windows, Mac, NT, OS/2 or other clients can be intercepted and manipulated by any program specified as a filter. Want a PostScript Printer? There's a filter that adds PostScript capability to a non-PostScript printer. Want to make a cheap Epson MX 80 dot-matrix emulate an expensive Okidata Microline dot-matrix for some archaic mainframe application? Write a filter that will rewrite the print codes to do it. Want custom-built banner pages? Use a filter. Many UNIX /etc/printcap filters on many Internet sites can do a variety of interesting and unique things. Someone may have already written a filter that does what you want! Types of filters
Three types of filters can be defined in the /etc/printcap file. In this book all filter examples are for Input filters. Input Filters
Input filters are specified by the if capability. Every job that comes into the spool is acted on by any filter specified in the if entry for that spool. Virtually all filters that an administrator would use are specified here. These filters can be either shell scripts, or compiled programs. Fixed Filters
Fixed filters are specified by separate capabilities, such as cf, df, and gf. Mostly, these exist for historical reasons. Originally, the idea of LPD was that incoming jobs would be submitted with the type fields set to trigger whatever filter was desired. However, type codes are confusing and annoying to the user, who has to remember which option is needed to trigger which type. It is much easier to set up multiple queues with different names, and this is what most sites do these days. For example, originally a DVI fixed filter might be specified in a spool for lp, triggered by the -d option passed to lpr. Jobs without this option aren't acted on by the DVI filter. However, the same thing can be done by creating a queue named lp that doesn't have a DVI filter, and a queue named lpdvi which has the DVI filter specified in the if capability. Users just need to remember which queue to print to, instead of what option needed for this or that program. Output Filters
These are specified by the of capability. Output filters are much more complicated than input filters and are hardly ever used in normal circumstances. They also generally require a compiled program somewhere, either directly specified or wrapped in a shell script, since they have to do their own signal-handling.

    Now, here comes the problem. My printer is a Win printer. It is really designed to print from Windows only. Most of the functionality comes from Windows. A network printer is compareable to a local printer. The only difference is in the way it receives its data. The process of formatting the data is supposed to be done by the origniating PC... not the receiver. In this case all of the ways that they have for printing from Linux to Windows won't work. They have the filter listed as "smbprint" which does absolutely no translating of the text (except for CR/LF). Guess what I need to do is write my own filter. If I can before someone else does.

October 22, 2001

    Well, further investigations shows that I am not totaly correct in my previous findings on the printer. I was able to send some text to the printer with the smbprint but it was not clean.

  1. printers share in smb.conf file
  2. printcap file
  3. created /dev/hplp
  4. in smbprint file made TRANS=1
  5. NO worky!!!!!
  6. Removed everything concerning printers from my system!!
Hmmm. I can print to the remote printer. All that I went thru to do this doesn't make a whole lot of sense. However, on the other hand it does. I was trying to use info from various places and they didn't seem to know a heck of a lot more than me. What it finally boiled down to was using SuSE's stuff that I didn't know about. (Didn't read all that I should!!) They had included a samba_print script that I didn't know about until after I had done all the investigations.
Final Results:
  1. Printers share in smb.conf
  2. printcap file
  3. samba_print file
  4. apsfilter for hpdj
  5. My own filter which sends first thru apsfilter and then into samba_print.
  6. Used LPRng to get the LPD
My File
            /var/lib/apsfilter/apsfilter - $1 $2 $3 $4 $5 $6 $7 $8| \
            /usr/bin/samba_print $1 $2 $3 $4 $5 $6 $7 $8
In the printcap file, I had to replace each if line such that it would point to YAST1 was used to setup a Remote Printer thru Samba and then changes made to get it to work.

November 05, 2001

    Want to more or less start over in all this... to see how much I have learned. And to see how good these notes are. Will take some time but right now I have a bunch. So I'm gona go for it .. uhh after the storm that is brewing!!

New SuSE 7.3 Install


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