Installing Mandrake 8.0

The Easy Way:

Go into your systems bios (usually by hitting the delete key at bootup) and choose to boot from your cdrom, then insert the Mandrake installation CD-ROM and reboot.

The Hard Way:

If you have an older bios you may not be able to do this. If this is the case you'll have to boot into windows, insert the Mandrake installation cd, put a blank floppy in the a: drive, and bring up a DOS prompt. Change directories to your cdrom drive, then cd to the dosutils directory and enter the 'rawrite ' command. You'll be prompted for a source file, which should be d:\images\cdrom.img (where d: should be your cdrom drive). Then you'll be asked for a destination drive, which is your floppy drive. Leave the cd and floppy in the drives and reboot.

Choose your Language & Accept License Agreement:

Here you can choose your language. I chose English.

Next pops up the User agreement, click Accept to move on. If you click Refuse the install procedure comes to a halt.

Choose Installation Class:

Next you are asked which installation class you want. There are two choices:


Automatically detects and configures you hard drive, mouse and keyboard.


This option allows for greater customization. Here you'll need to manually configure your hard drive, mouse and keyboard.

After choosing either option you'll need ot choose "Upgrade" or "Install". I chose install, unfortunately when upgrading, something will most likely get broken especially when doing a major upgrade like 7.2 to 8.2.


There are 3 choices.

Low: Desktop Computer (no Internet)

Medium: Desktop Computer (with Internet)

High: Server

Setup Filesystem:

If you chose the "Recommended" installation the DiskDrake wizard pops up and gives you the following options to choose from:

Use existing partition

No changes will be made and the install continues.

Erase entire Disk

Dedicate the whole hard drive to Linux Mandrake and delete all data on the drive. (Easiest)

Use Free Space

This option automatically partitions the free space on your hard drive.

Custom Disk partitioning

If you select this option, you can change the size, mount point and file system type (ReiserFS, Ext2, Swap, etc.....). You can also click the auto allocate button and let Mandrake create the partitions for you (easiest). I chose to use the Reiserfs journaling filesystem type over the standard Linux Ext2 file system. Go here for recommendations regarding Linux partitions .

Why ReiserFS?

ReiserFS is a new journaling filesystem for Linux. Journaling filesystems differ from regular filesystems like ext2. All filesystem operations are logged and in case of any errors, the operation is rolled back without any changes being made to the filesystem. This allows faster recovery from a system crash or an unexpected shutdown.

Select Packages

Before selecting the packages to install on your system, you'll be asked how many cd's you have. If you don't have the 2nd extension cd click cancel and proceed to package selection.

The packages are listed under the following 3 groups:


Office WorkStation
Game Station
Multimedia Station
Internet Station
Network Computer (Client)
Scientific Workstation
Console Tools


Network Computer Server

Graphical Environment:

Other Graphical Desktops

If you want to be able to compile programs (.tgz packages) or compile a new kernel, I recommend selecting the "Development" packages.

Some packages are hidden by default, to view all packages listed alphabetically, select the "Toggle between flat and group sorted".

Select Root Password

Set the administrator password.

Add a User:

Here you are given the option to add users to your system. After creating a user and password, you can select an icon to represent that account. The icon will appear in the KDM login screen.

Configure networking:

Next, Mandrake will attempt to automatically detect networking devices, choose your connection method and click ok.  You're given the option to use dhcp (if your ISP supports this option), otherwise type in your IP Address. Next enter you host name, eg: localhost.


Here you're given the opportunity to make changes to your system, you can also add a printer at this time:

printer settings

Configure Services:

Here you can choose which daemons (services) will be loaded during boot time.

Create a Boot Disk:

Highly recommended.

Install bootloader:

You get 3 choices.

Lilo (text mode)
Lilo (graphical mode) - nice

The default options should be fine, however you can change the boot device and delay time under "advanced".

Configure X:

At this point in the install you'll begin to configure X, the Linux graphical environment.

You'll be asked which version of Xfree86 you'd like to use, XFree 3.3.6 or XFree 4.0.3 (If you want to use the new Anti-Aliased fonts in KDE, choose 4.0.3).

Setup will attempt to recognize your video card and ask you to choose a screen resolution, you will also be given the option to test your configuration. A test screen pops up asking if everything is working, if it looks ok, choose yes. If you choose no, another menu will pop up giving you several options. From this menu, you may change your:

Graphics card
Resolution & Color Depth

Everything should be automatically detected. If so, click ok.

You will be asked if you would like Linux to automatically boot into X upon restart. I chose yes.

That's it, you're done! Remove the CD and reboot (don't forget to reset your boot settings in your Bios if you changed them).