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Installing Suse Pro 9.3


May 15, 2005


   The intention of this article is to show those new to Linux that installing Suse 9.3 is an easy task and to provide a limited "how-to". I say limited because because trying to cover the various hardware/OS configurations would be impossible. Your best source for finding answers to your questions is to visit the Suse Linux Forums. Be sure to use the search function before asking a question, chances are your question has been asked and answered. I fully intend on creating more articles for Suse 9.3, stay tuned! This article is divided into 4 pages because it depends on +30 screen shots. I used VMware for this installation so that I could take/save/edit screenshots as I went. You are welcome to use these for whatever but PLEASE do not link to these pics.


The first task is to get your hands on a Suse 9.3 DVD/CD. You can get it direct from Suse as I did, from, or other sources such as Linux CD. Make sure you DO NOT get the "Live" CD. This is a bootable CD version not the installation distribution. On with the show...


Prepare your computer

If you are installing Suse on a computer with no other operating system you can skip this section.

I run Suse in 2 scenarios. I "dual boot" with XP and I also use "hot swap" bays. I'll explain...

"Hot swapping" is using one computer but changing out the hard drive containing the OS. This has the advantage of keeping everything between the 2 OS's separate and will speed up Linux since it is now at the front of the drive instead of being parked on a slower part of the disk after Windows. I use the Vantec EZ-SWAP MRK-200ST-BK (purchased from Newegg) to swap out my SATA drives, one for XP, 1 for Suse 9.3. You can see a review with lots of pics at (see My Computers for more info)

Dual booting is where you have 2 operating systems on the same computer. This can be achieved either by using 2 separate partitions or disks. You MUST have Windows installed FIRST, Windows products do not play nice with other operating systems. Based on experience I do not recommend using any Linux boot loader to manage the process. The easiest way to do this is to buy Acronis Disk Director (see the link in the right border of this site). This gives you both a partition manager AND a neat little program called OS Selector I'll be using the functions of these programs in this article...

If you decide to use Acronis Disk Director lets prepare the disk. First defrag Windows (I use a program called Perfect Disk for it's advanced features). After defrag open Disk Director. Right-click on the drive with the Windows OS (usually C:) and choose properties, look at how much "used space" is taken up, write it down. Now you need to decide on how big you want that partition to be. You need to leave at least 20% free space but it hurts nothing to go overboard as I did and leave plenty of room. Once you've decided what size you want that partition to be, right-click on "C:" and choose "Resize" Change the number in the Box labeled "Partition size" to the appropriate amount. Next click in the "Unallocated space box after" box and the size should change to the remaining space in the drive. Click on the checkered flag in the menu bar to apply changes. Don't reboot yet! If you have another drive available it would be a good idea to repeat the preceding steps to create a FAT32 partition to share info between Windows and Linux. NTFS writing support is (to the best of my knowledge) still a little sketchy in Linux. When finished, reboot.



Ensure your BIOS is set to boot from the DVD/CD drive and insert the Suse DVD/CD. You'll get this screen, use you arrow keys and choose "Installation" and hit "Enter".



Suse will examine and activate your hardware...




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