Friday, November 20


Dear Fedora People, You Suck

If you install Fedora 12 with /boot on a RAID array - either as its own partition or as part of a root partition that is on a RAID array - and also install the bootloader to that partition rather than to the system MBR, the partition will not be marked as bootable, as it should be. This renders the installed Fedora unbootable. To work around this issue, you must manually mark the appropriate partition as bootable with a tool such as fdisk.

Of course, this is the default behaviour.  Nice testing there.

Yeah, I know, open source, plenty of betas etc etc.  But you'd think someone would have bothered to actually install it at some point.

Update: Oops, I'm wrong.  The default behaviour is to install the bootloader to the MBR.  However, that doesn't work either.  I'm now trying it with the bootloader actually on the RAID array.  If that doesn't work, I'll try fdisking it with the rescue CD.  If that doesn't work, then screw it, I'll run an un-RAIDed boot partition.  Of course, by that point I will have installed it SEVEN TIMES.

Update: The Fedora installer is a blight.

Apart from being entirely unable to set up a proper software RAID boot partition (something Linux has supported for years), it crashed twice during disk partitioning,* once skipped the package selection stage entirely, and once failed to load the video driver.  Oh, and once it just failed in the middle of the install process with a read error, though that's not necessarily its fault.

On top of that, the install menu doesn't support my keyboard.  The keyboard works in BIOS, works after the install menu, but won't work in the menu itself.  I had the exact same problem in openSUSE, though...  Actually, openSUSE also failed to boot after installation just like Fedora.

Anyway, what with three failed attempts to get a working RAID /boot, one trial of a non-raid /boot, one trip into rescue land, one read error, and four outright installer failures, it's taken me ten tries to do a fairly simple install of a modern version of Linux.  And that's ignoring the failure with openSUSE.  And I'm hardly an inexperienced user; I've been using Linux continuously since RedHat 6.1.

This is just crap.

* Not an outright crash, but the installer's error handling is basically nil.  At the first sign of trouble, you get a dialog box that allows you to reboot.  No options, just reboot.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:38 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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1 Did you try RHEL 5 (well, CentOS)?

Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at Saturday, November 21 2009 04:35 AM (/ppBw)

2 Debian! Seriously!

Also I hear ArchLinux is pretty great also.

Posted by: nf at Saturday, November 21 2009 07:51 AM (LOy/y)


Always. Always! Someone will show up and suggest Debian!

I bet that if you posted about needing hip replacement surgery, someone would suggest Debian.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at Saturday, November 21 2009 08:45 AM (+rSRq)

4 Pete - my main home Linux box is CentOS, as are the / servers.  It's certainly more reliable, though the disk partitioning tool in the installer suffers from all the same flaws as the one in Fedora...  Being exactly the same code.

nf - Debian, pleh.

Steven - Well, we can test that. wink

Posted by: Pixy Misa at Saturday, November 21 2009 11:12 AM (PiXy!)

5 Actually I asked because I know that there were changes since MSW (Matt Wilson) departed and Peter Jones assumed control over the installer.

Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at Saturday, November 21 2009 11:43 AM (/ppBw)

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