At work I have a bit of a Laptop graveyard which also includes one or two functional units when I came across a Packard Bell iGo with an AMD processor, I didn’t remember putting it there so fired it up or at least started it, saw the Packard Bell splash screen, and thought “Seems OK” and switched it off.

Fail #1
It seemed a good candidate for Linux so hunted for a live CD/DVD in the pile on my desk All seemed to struggle for some reason in fact I don’t think I even got as far as a desktop I know I’ll just do a direct install and worry about stuff later” this is where the first *fail* showed up it helps if you have some memory in the slot! It would appear all it had was a few Meg of on-board.

Fail #2
Rummaging around I found a stick of 128MB not much but at least it’s something and stuck a Fedora 9 disc in (It was the only install disc I had) the disc booted up and the install process started but hang on why is there no /sda to partition? Upon opening up the HDD Drive bay, shock, horror no hard drive! Back to rummaging and found a 40GB HDD and started all over again.

Fedora seemed to think that there was not enough oomph for a GUI install so we proceeded with a text version all went well if a little slow just over an hour if I remember correct, come the initial reboot and we are booted to a terminal log in prompt “Hm why no GUI log in?

Fail #3
So I logged in and did the usual ~startx hey presto a nice desktop this probably means its dropping to innit3 rather than innit5 so I did ~vi /etc/innittab and nothing “Aye where’s the v?” yep you guessed it the letter v on the keyboard is dead!
So what have we learned?

  • Check in the BIOS or whatever what we have I.e. Ram, HDD etc.
  • If its in the graveyard or a skip its probably busted.

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