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Linux boot disc for hardware test?

Community Veteran
Posts: 4,868
Thanks: 126
Fixes: 24
Registered: 14-07-2009

Linux boot disc for hardware test?

I don't know much about Linux as I rarely have to be involved with it but I have an application where a Linux boot disc might be helpful.  I have a Windows XP PC where the wired networking has stopped working.  I have fiddled around, re-installed the Nvidia networking drivers but all to no avail.  I think it is probably a hardware issue and I could prove that one way or another by making a parallel installation of a new copy of Windows.  But that would take some time.  Is there a Linux boot disc with lots of networking drivers included that I could download, burn to a CD, boot from  and quickly see if the network adaptor will work or not?  Who knows, I might even get hooked?   
10 REPLIES
Steve
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 6,817
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Registered: 13-07-2009

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

Haven't seen you In this section before  Grin Yeah download and burn either Linux mint or Ubuntu, Both you can boot up from disk and see If you hook up.
If life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
Waldo
Grafter
Posts: 473
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

Any LiveCD should do; you might want to try unetbootin to create a bootable USB flash drive rather tha burn a CD.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
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Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

Most recent releases will be fine. I would recommend Mint  Wink (http://www.linuxmint.com)
Get the latest release V10 386 version for best compatibility, it includes drives for most network cards.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 14-07-2009

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

Since I really did want Linux on an optical disc (not a flash drive, as I don't have a spare one) and Hairy Biker had been kind enough to post an actual link I went with his (I assume Hairy Biker is a he) suggestion of Linux Mint.  That's a 1.3G file so it needs a DVD rather than a CD but that is by-the-by.  I downloaded it after midnight so as not to eat into my Plusnet allowance.  Windows 7 (which I normally use) has the built-in capability to burn an ISO image so that was simple.
The disc booted fine, a bit slow and clunky but what can you expect from a DVD?  I was able to browse the Internet so it must have coped with the networking hardware on my own computer but, being unfamiliar with Linux, I could not find any information about my network connection, IP address and the like.  In Windows I would look in Device Manager for the hardware details, Network Connections for the speed details and options to set fixed parameters like IP address, and run ipconfig in a CMD Window to learn my IP address, gateway etc.  Would someone be kind enough to tell me how to get at the equivalent information in Linux?  I particularly need the Linux equivalent to ipconfig.
           
Steve
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 6,817
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Registered: 13-07-2009

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

@Reedrichards my reply not good enough for you? I did not think you would want me to hold your hand In finding links for mint or ubuntu, I thought you just wanted to test If your hardware worked? Which obviously It Is.
If life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
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Registered: 01-09-2007

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

If you had used an alternative Linux such as Ubuntu, it would have fitted on a CD. Cheesy
You need to get to a command screen from the options...
ifconfig
is similar to ipconfig /all
iwconfig
is wifi related info.
cat /etc/network/interfaces

would show your configuration setup including wifi security on a Ubuntu style install
Quote
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback
auto ath0
#iface ath0 inet static
iface ath0 inet dhcp
#address 192.168.0.5
netmask 255.255.255.0
gateway 192.168.1.1
#wireless-rate 54M
dns-nameservers 127.0.0.1, 212.159.6.9, 212.159.6.9, 8.8.8.8
wpa-driver madwifi
wpa-ssid ThomsonF37043
wpa-ap-scan 1
wpa-proto WPA
wpa-pairwise TKIP
wpa-group TKIP
wpa-key-mgmt WPA-PSK
wpa-psk 0621a78........................etc................................................................

To look at hardware use the
lshw
command - this will be very large.

Community Veteran
Posts: 4,868
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Registered: 14-07-2009

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

Steve M, your reply was fine but I have no idea about the different Linux versions so no means of picking one rather than another.  H.B. made a specific suggestion so I went with that.  I haven't yet tried the disc on the computer I need to test, just on the one I had to hand to prove it works.
Jeremy, thanks for the pointers.
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 6,775
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Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

OR on Ubuntu ( and I presume Mint ) you can get most of the info the easy way. Right click on the Network Icon on the top line , select Connection Information and there you are ( see attached )
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,850
Registered: 11-08-2007

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

system rescue cd
Description: SystemRescueCd is a Linux system rescue disk available as a bootable CD-ROM or USB stick for administrating or repairing your system and data after a crash. It aims to provide an easy way to carry out admin tasks on your computer, such as creating and editing the hard disk partitions. It comes with a lot of linux software such as system tools (parted, partimage, fstools, ...) and basic tools (editors, midnight commander, network tools). It requires no installation. It can be used on linux servers, linux desktops or windows boxes. The kernel supports the important file systems (ext2/ext3/ext4, reiserfs, reiser4, btrfs, xfs, jfs, vfat, ntfs, iso9660), as well as network filesystems (samba and nfs).
http://www.sysresccd.org/Main_Page
download:
http://www.sysresccd.org/Download
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
Thanks: 257
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Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: Linux boot disc for hardware test?

Quote from: ReedRichards
(I assume Hairy Biker is a he) suggestion of Linux Mint.  That's a 1.3G file so it needs a DVD rather than a CD but that is by-the-by.  I downloaded it after midnight so as not to eat into my Plusnet allowance.  Windows 7 (which I normally use) has the built-in capability to burn an ISO image so that was simple.

Strange my disc is <700Mb did you go for the DVD version? And yes I am male.  Grin
As has been said right click on the network manager (looks like a socket with a cable coming from it) and choose properties.
OR open a terminal (from the main menu) and type in ifconfig eth0
you will get something like this-
ifconfig eth0
eth0      Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 00:16:76:b4:bc:e9 
          inet addr:192.168.1.66  Bcast:192.168.1.255  Mask:255.255.255.0
          inet6 addr: fe80::216:76ff:feb4:bce9/64 Scope:Link
          UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST  MTU:1500  Metric:1
          RX packets:8192 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
          TX packets:8421 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
          collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000
          RX bytes:5372658 (5.3 MB)  TX bytes:1286948 (1.2 MB)
          Interrupt:21 Memory:dffe0000-e0000000

If you want to know the hardware details then run the Sytem profiler, (just type in hard in to the search box in the menu) and go down to the PCI devices. This is similar to the device manager (bar the fact it is readonly)