[techtalk] swaping & upgrading

T. E. Pickering tim at astro.rug.nl
Wed Nov 24 02:53:47 EST 1999

> 1.  In relation to the discussion before about the swap directory and
> Netscape and StarOffice.    
>    a.How can I tell if  my swap directory is (or is not) being
> utilized?  I never hear or see the HD light go on, like I do when
> erWindows is using the HD for swap space- 

the 'free' command tells you how much swap is available and how much
is being used:

lothar[15]> free 
             total       used       free     shared    buffers cached
Mem:        257664     115268     142396      66648       5240 26016
-/+ buffers/cache:      84012     173652
Swap:       317884      13572     304312

so this machine has 317884 kB of swap enabled and 13572 kB are
currenly being used.  

>    b.when using (and when I installed) StarOffice it takes (took) a _very_
> long time to load the program (as in minutes), once i'm using it its okay.
> But I have 64 mb ram (and I think 128 swap), and from what I've read,
> people are doing it with much less and more successfully.  Any idea why?
> I'm using afterstep for my WM.  [Netscape does better, and only takes
> seconds to load up]

staroffice is kinda cpu intensive so how long it takes to come up
depends on how fast your machine is in addition to the amount of RAM.
it also depends somewhat on the speed of your harddrive.  minutes
seems excessive, though.  version 5.1a takes about 15-20 sec to fully
load on my K6-2 300 and about 1.5 min on my old P5-100 with 80 MB of 
RAM.  do you have java enabled in staroffice?  that might slow things 
a bit.  are you running netscape and soffice at the same time?  with
64 MB, that's a bit tight and'll slow things up.  

> 2.  I need to update my redhat to at least 6.0 (normally i wouldn't be too
> picky or in such a hurry, but need it to run some software for a class).
> How do I go about doing this?  (and since I've just got most of linux to
> act like I want it to -including my most generic ethernet card- how do I
> keep from loosing that. I installed 5.2 from a CD, but don't have access
> to a 6.* one;  my school has a local mirror site with 6.0 on it
> (ruberducky.cs.binghamton.edu), so that is the easiest way that I am
> thinking of at the moment...but I don't know where to start (i've tried
> the redhat manual, but its just not making sense to me)

i've had pretty good luck with redhat upgrades working properly and
not messing up hardware configs.  ymmv, of course, but upgrades mostly
just update your rpm packages and usually don't munge too much with
config files.  lilo is one config it will munge so you might want to
make a backup of /etc/lilo.conf.  if your eth0 is supported under
RH5.2, it shouldn't be a prob under 6.x.

if you have fast network access, you can do an ftp install from your
local mirror.  first you'll need to grab the bootnet.img from the
images directory in the appropriate redhat tree on the mirror site and
put that on a floppy (using rawrite under dos/win or 'dd
if=bootnet.img of=/dev/fd0 bs=1440k count=1' under linux as root).
then boot the floppy, follow your nose through the IP and ftp
server setup, and then choose upgrade instead of install.  it'll then find
your / partition, look up your rpm database there, and figure out what 
packages it'll need to load.  you can either customize it or just let
it upgrade what you already have (i usually just do the latter).  then 
it should cook along for a while and at the end will bring up the lilo 
config part before finishing the upgrade.

6.0's installer is pretty similar to 5.2 so you shouldn't have too
much of a prob.  the only diff between installing 5.2 from cd will be
having to make the floppy (i assume you booted from the cdrom), having
to specify IP info and stuff during the install, and then selecting
upgrade instead install.  you won't have to worry about X config or
disk partitioning or anything like that.  if you go to 6.1, the
X-based install is even nicer and have much more comprehensive on-line

> 3. Has anyone ever done linux of any kind on a mac?           

i've played with my friend's linuxppc box, but have no other personal
experience.  it looked and acted just like any other linux from what i 
saw and the boot loader was a lot nicer than lilo.  


|  Tim Pickering                 |     Kapteyn Institute, Postbus 800  |  
|  tim at astro.rug.nl              | 9700 AV Groningen, The Netherlands  |
|  http://www.astro.rug.nl/~tim/ |                    +31-50-363-6519  |
My haircut is totally traditional!

techtalk at linuxchix.org   http://www.linuxchix.org

More information about the Techtalk mailing list