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Unable to install any Linux distro

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September 3, 2010 4:22:41 PM

Hey everyone.

I am unable to install any Linux distribution on my Dell Dimension E520. I was able to boot into the live environments of OpenSUSE 11.1 and Lubuntu 9.10 (whatever the latest one is) after disabling all kernel options, but after they go through the installation process they simply blank out and restart the computer in an endless loop.

Google has yielded no results. What could be causing this?

Thanks in advance.
September 3, 2010 11:29:46 PM

Well...once you install the OS nativly on your hard drive, you need to remove your CD in case the system auto-boots into bootable optical media.
September 4, 2010 4:14:00 AM

Thank you for that, but I did just as I always have. I've been messing with Live CDs for over 3 years now. Good to at least have all angles covered.

Have you any other ideas of why this may be occurring?
Related resources
a b 5 Linux
September 4, 2010 6:25:15 AM

I've seen a lot of posts suggesting that you need to add the kernel parameter

aic7xxx=no_probe

when installing on many Dells. Could be worth a try. (Most distributions will give you the option to press a Fn key when booting the install disk to add extra options.)
a b 5 Linux
September 4, 2010 1:47:43 PM

BIOS Updates applied? Might be worth taking a look at the BIOS settings and seeing if anything looks odd.
September 4, 2010 1:58:25 PM

It might be a problem with the actual CD...if you changed the type of discs you use, it can affect installation processes. For example on my OLD laptop, I have to use DVD+R...I can't use DVD-R because it screws up on the install. Now, weather the DVD is either a + or -, isn't the only variable, the company who makes it can also affect it and there can be plenty of other factors. Try different CD, DVDs.
a b 5 Linux
September 4, 2010 2:01:50 PM

Ooohhh.. I like that. Just strange enough that it sounds Dell.
a b 5 Linux
September 4, 2010 2:31:51 PM

audiovoodoo said:
Ooohhh.. I like that. Just strange enough that it sounds Dell.

Well, at least we haven't got and "Maintenance Mode" errors yet!
a b 5 Linux
September 5, 2010 7:18:56 PM

Another thought having skimmed that thread is that the grub version supplied with 10.10 (now beta download) might not hurt matters. That patching 10.04 fixed it implies that would now be standard in the latest builds.
September 10, 2010 2:43:28 PM

I haven't tried the kernel option yet, and I have tried many distros on just about every disk format imaginable.

Thanks for all the information guys. I'll be testing it all out tonight and let you know the results.
September 11, 2010 5:39:30 AM

linuxhero27 said:
Hey everyone.

I am unable to install any Linux distribution on my Dell Dimension E520. I was able to boot into the live environments of OpenSUSE 11.1 and Lubuntu 9.10 (whatever the latest one is) after disabling all kernel options, but after they go through the installation process they simply blank out and restart the computer in an endless loop.

Google has yielded no results. What could be causing this?

Thanks in advance.


I've encountered the odd optical drive which doesn't like *nix (and I've had a couple go bad too). Have you tried a different one?
September 11, 2010 6:03:50 AM

Thanks for all the info guys.

I did try the different kernel options with some of the distros. Mandriva just freezes and Ubuntu gives an "Authentication Failure" after having a million and one SQUASHFS errors.

I don't have a spare drive on hand to try the DVD drive, but at this point I give up.

I have decided to throw in the towel. I deem this machine not worthy of the Linux World. If it has this much trouble with anything I throw at it, maybe it was for the best.

Thanks again for all your help guys.

Best solution

September 11, 2010 11:13:32 AM
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linuxhero27 said:
Thanks for all the info guys.

I did try the different kernel options with some of the distros. Mandriva just freezes and Ubuntu gives an "Authentication Failure" after having a million and one SQUASHFS errors.

I don't have a spare drive on hand to try the DVD drive, but at this point I give up.

I have decided to throw in the towel. I deem this machine not worthy of the Linux World. If it has this much trouble with anything I throw at it, maybe it was for the best.

Thanks again for all your help guys.


According to this...

http://webapps.ubuntu.com/certification/make/Dell/

...your Dell is...

Certified Dimension E520
64-bit PC (x86_64) 8.10, 8.04 LTS, 7.10, 7.04

If you have another PC just swap optical drives and see what happens.

If you are using any expansion cards then remove them to find out if they are preventing your Dell from running GNU/Linux.

If they are, then reintroduce them one at a time until you find the culprit.

If it's a card you can't do without then try a slot swap with the other cards.

Two or more slots may be sharing resources.
September 16, 2010 4:02:48 AM

Everyone. Thank you for all of your support.

I found out that the second core on the dual-core cpu was the cause. As soon as I disabled it, the system booted anything that I threw at it.

September 16, 2010 4:04:10 AM

Best answer selected by linuxhero27.
September 16, 2010 5:08:31 AM

Good! :-)

I'll keep your solution in mind in case I encounter any other dual-core CPU users who are experiencing inexplicable *nix OS installation problems.
September 18, 2010 4:53:36 AM

Good to know. I had to select an answer so I just picked one. If it was up to me, all of you would get credit.

Thanks again. For the millionth time.
September 22, 2010 5:25:20 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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