Discussion:
Installing 64bit Slackware for the first time.
(too old to reply)
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-08 16:29:04 UTC
Permalink
I've used Slackware since v3.3, and installed it and upgraded it many times.
My current desktop system, purchased about 10 years ago, runs 32bit
Slackware 14.0 with all the current patches.

But, my system is starting to fail. The HD is near end-of-life, some of the
USB ports have ceased to respond, and the motherboard sometimes randomly
powers itself on. So, I've ordered a new machine, and will take this
opportunity to advance from 32bit Slackware 14.0 to 64bit Slackware 14.2.

But, as I say, I bought my current machine ten years ago, and hardware has
changed considerably since then. The BIOS has become EFI and then UEFI, and
MBR has become GPT. And this leads me to my question...

Do you have any advice about installing 64bit Slackware 14.2 on a UEFI
machine with a GPT partitioned hard drive? This machine will /only/ run
Slackware, so you can disregard a dual-boot scenario.

Thanks in advance for your advice and commentary.
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Jimmy Johnson
2020-07-08 18:23:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
Do you have any advice about installing 64bit Slackware 14.2 on a UEFI
machine with a GPT partitioned hard drive? This machine will/only/ run
Slackware, so you can disregard a dual-boot scenario.
Thanks in advance for your advice and commentary.
I use and test linux operating systems on many(more than a few) older
and newer machines for more than 20yrs. I can tell you to set your bios
to boot legacy and to delete/remove your gpt partition table and install
a msdos partition table. I've seen the worst and the best in uefi bios
settings but they will all boot legacy.

Tell us about your new computer, make, model, processor, drives and the
type and amount of ram and maybe some details can be supplied back to you.
--
Jimmy Johnson

Slackware64 KDE5 - AMD A8-7600 - EXT4 at sda7
Registered Linux User #380263
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-08 18:39:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jimmy Johnson
Post by Lew Pitcher
Do you have any advice about installing 64bit Slackware 14.2 on a UEFI
machine with a GPT partitioned hard drive? This machine will/only/ run
Slackware, so you can disregard a dual-boot scenario.
Thanks in advance for your advice and commentary.
I use and test linux operating systems on many(more than a few) older
and newer machines for more than 20yrs. I can tell you to set your bios
to boot legacy and to delete/remove your gpt partition table and install
a msdos partition table. I've seen the worst and the best in uefi bios
settings but they will all boot legacy.
I gathered as much from the Slackware 14.2 README.UEFI file.
Thanks for the confirmation.
Post by Jimmy Johnson
Tell us about your new computer, make, model, processor, drives and the
type and amount of ram and maybe some details can be supplied back to you.
The system will have
* AMD Ryzen 5 3400G processor
* ASRock B450M PRO4 motherboard
* 2 x 16Gb G.SKILL Aegis DDR4 memory sticks
* 2 x 1T BarraCuda 3.5" HD
* 2 x ASUS DRW SATA DVD/RW drives
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Jimmy Johnson
2020-07-08 20:05:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
The system will have
* AMD Ryzen 5 3400G processor
Nice video, you'll be happy! And plenty of power with not too high power
consumption, I have three computers going here on my desktop, I can feel
the heat. low power processors make a difference.
Post by Lew Pitcher
* ASRock B450M PRO4 motherboard
Remember to set drives to AHCI, from what I read you won't have a
problem booting legacy at all using that board.
Post by Lew Pitcher
* 2 x 16Gb G.SKILL Aegis DDR4 memory sticks
Cool!
Post by Lew Pitcher
* 2 x 1T BarraCuda 3.5" HD
I wish you luck with those drives, I would have used WD NAS drives. EXT4
will handle 4TB partitions no problem.

Nice system! From what I read, with that processor and mainboard it's
easy to overclock, I used to do that stuff years ago, I decided it was
not worth the effort for the little gained performance I got.
--
Jimmy Johnson

Slackware64 KDE5 - AMD A8-7600 - EXT4 at sda7
Registered Linux User #380263
Jimmy Johnson
2020-07-08 20:35:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jimmy Johnson
   * ASRock B450M PRO4 motherboard
Remember to set drives to AHCI, from what I read you won't have a
problem booting legacy at all using that board.
I should have added this from a asrock forum mod:
"The default UEFI settings, with CSM set to Enabled, and all CSM sub
option set to Legacy Only, is all that is needed for a Legacy installation."
--
Jimmy Johnson

Slackware64 KDE5 - AMD A8-7600 - EXT4 at sda7
Registered Linux User #380263
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-08 21:59:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jimmy Johnson
Post by Jimmy Johnson
Post by Lew Pitcher
* ASRock B450M PRO4 motherboard
Remember to set drives to AHCI, from what I read you won't have a
problem booting legacy at all using that board.
"The default UEFI settings, with CSM set to Enabled, and all CSM sub
option set to Legacy Only, is all that is needed for a Legacy
installation."
That's very good news

Thank you /very/ much, Jimmy
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Jerry Peters
2020-07-08 19:44:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jimmy Johnson
Post by Lew Pitcher
Do you have any advice about installing 64bit Slackware 14.2 on a UEFI
machine with a GPT partitioned hard drive? This machine will/only/ run
Slackware, so you can disregard a dual-boot scenario.
Thanks in advance for your advice and commentary.
I use and test linux operating systems on many(more than a few) older
and newer machines for more than 20yrs. I can tell you to set your bios
to boot legacy and to delete/remove your gpt partition table and install
a msdos partition table. I've seen the worst and the best in uefi bios
settings but they will all boot legacy.
GPT is not dependent on EFI, grub (& probably lilo) will happily boot
via the bios from a gpt partitioned disk, you just need to creat a BBP
(bios boot partition) for the code that grub would normally stick
after the MBR.

All of my 4 machines are GPT partitioned, but only 1 boots via EFI.
Only 2 of them even support EFI.

If you have more than primary partitions, GPT is a big improvement --
the partition table is all in one place, not scattered all over the
disk like DOS/MBR does.
Post by Jimmy Johnson
Tell us about your new computer, make, model, processor, drives and the
type and amount of ram and maybe some details can be supplied back to you.
Aragorn
2020-07-08 20:49:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Peters
Post by Jimmy Johnson
Post by Lew Pitcher
Do you have any advice about installing 64bit Slackware 14.2 on a
UEFI machine with a GPT partitioned hard drive? This machine
will/only/ run Slackware, so you can disregard a dual-boot
scenario.
Thanks in advance for your advice and commentary.
I use and test linux operating systems on many(more than a few)
older and newer machines for more than 20yrs. I can tell you to set
your bios to boot legacy and to delete/remove your gpt partition
table and install a msdos partition table. I've seen the worst and
the best in uefi bios settings but they will all boot legacy.
GPT is not dependent on EFI, grub (& probably lilo) will happily boot
via the bios from a gpt partitioned disk, you just need to creat a BBP
(bios boot partition) for the code that grub would normally stick
after the MBR.
LILO won't. GRUB will.
Post by Jerry Peters
All of my 4 machines are GPT partitioned, but only 1 boots via EFI.
Only 2 of them even support EFI.
If you have more than primary partitions, GPT is a big improvement --
the partition table is all in one place, not scattered all over the
disk like DOS/MBR does.
Plus that there is redundancy of the superblocks, plus that you don't
have to worry about primary and/or extended partition enumeration,
plus that in addition to the standard UUIDs and LABELs — which are
filesystem-specific — you also have PARTUUIDs and (if set) PARTLABELs,
both of which are stored in the partition table and do not change if
the fileystem is reformatted.
--
With respect,
= Aragorn =
Javier
2020-07-08 20:54:59 UTC
Permalink
Post by Aragorn
Post by Jerry Peters
GPT is not dependent on EFI, grub (& probably lilo) will happily boot
via the bios from a gpt partitioned disk, you just need to creat a BBP
(bios boot partition) for the code that grub would normally stick
after the MBR.
LILO won't. GRUB will.
There is also the option of syslinux, which is much simpler than GRUB.
Javier
2020-07-08 18:38:36 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
I've ordered a new machine, and will take this
opportunity to advance from 32bit Slackware 14.0 to 64bit Slackware 14.2.
But, as I say, I bought my current machine ten years ago, and hardware has
changed considerably since then. The BIOS has become EFI and then UEFI, and
MBR has become GPT. And this leads me to my question...
Do you have any advice about installing 64bit Slackware 14.2 on a UEFI
machine with a GPT partitioned hard drive? This machine will /only/ run
Slackware, so you can disregard a dual-boot scenario.
My advice is to buy second hand good quality hardware (Lenovo, Dell, HP)
from company lots that still support MBR. 64 bit is a big improvement,
but the UEFI upgrade seems to be more motivated by an interest in
lockdown by Microsoft rather than any usual features. I think the only
real advantage of GPT is to be able to use more than 2 Tb size disks.

Slackware 14.2 is four years old and that it comes with a 4.4.14 linux
kernel from 2016, so using bleeding hardware is something I wouldn't
advice. With bleeding edge hardware in the best case you are wasting
money and in the worst case you risk that something is not supported
(graphics card, sound, whatever.)

Another option is to use Slackware-current instead of 14.2, but I
don't know how stable it is. But even with Slackware current I would
still stick to old second hand hardware.
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-08 18:55:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Javier
Post by Lew Pitcher
I've ordered a new machine, and will take this
opportunity to advance from 32bit Slackware 14.0 to 64bit Slackware 14.2.
But, as I say, I bought my current machine ten years ago, and hardware
has changed considerably since then. The BIOS has become EFI and then
UEFI, and MBR has become GPT. And this leads me to my question...
Do you have any advice about installing 64bit Slackware 14.2 on a UEFI
machine with a GPT partitioned hard drive? This machine will /only/ run
Slackware, so you can disregard a dual-boot scenario.
My advice is to buy second hand good quality hardware (Lenovo, Dell, HP)
from company lots that still support MBR.
I considered that, but I'm looking for a long-term investment. Remember, I'm
replacing a 10-year-old system; that should tell you how long I go between
hardware upgrades.
Post by Javier
64 bit is a big improvement,
but the UEFI upgrade seems to be more motivated by an interest in
lockdown by Microsoft rather than any usual features.
Yah. I get that. But, anything new uses [U]EFI, so I have to go with the
flow.
Post by Javier
I think the only
real advantage of GPT is to be able to use more than 2 Tb size disks.
/That's/ the sort of observation I was looking for. Thanks!

I ordered 2 1Tb drives; I've got a single 500 GB hard drive in the current
system, and I don't use it all. Seagate (and others) are switching /some/ of
their drives to SMR (shingled magnetic recording), which, apparently, isn't
as fast as the CMR technology it supplants. According to Seagate themselves,
the only BarraCuda drive that /doesn't/ use SMR is the 1TB drive.

I ordered 2, knowing that I /might/ fill 1 in the upcoming years. With
judicious partitioning and proper backups, I can have recovery space on both
drives, and minimize the impact of a single drive failure.
Post by Javier
Slackware 14.2 is four years old and that it comes with a 4.4.14 linux
kernel from 2016, so using bleeding hardware is something I wouldn't
advice. With bleeding edge hardware in the best case you are wasting
money and in the worst case you risk that something is not supported
(graphics card, sound, whatever.)
Perhaps, but I'm betting that Slackware 15 comes along fairly soon (Pat? Are
you listening?). I'm not buying for today; I'm buying for today and next
year, and July 2030.
Post by Javier
Another option is to use Slackware-current instead of 14.2, but I
don't know how stable it is.
I watch the Slackware-current changelogs regularly. I haven't seen anything
that screams /install me *now*/ there. I'll wait.
Post by Javier
But even with Slackware current I would
still stick to old second hand hardware.
Thanks for the info. As I've already purchased the system (I'm just waiting
for delivery), I'll stick with the current plan. If I have to, I can use a
spare graphics card that I know works with Slackware. If I don't get the
"full power" of the system with Slackware 14.2, at least I know that I will,
with 15.0 or later.

Thanks again
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Bit Twister
2020-07-08 19:47:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
Thanks for the info. As I've already purchased the system (I'm just waiting
for delivery),
I have no idea what boot loader is used by Slackware.

Go ahead and download the user manual for the system. If you are lucky
the bios may support Legacy OS/CMS booting only.

If so, then I can recommend booting a rescue cd, use gparted to set your
drive's partition table GPT. That way you can still have the usual
media labels on partitons with the added feature of Partition Labels.

Labels make /etc/fstab easy to manage/read. Examples:
LABEL=mga7 / ext4 relatime,acl 1 1
LABEL=accounts /accounts ext4 relatime,acl 1 2
PARTLABEL=swap swap swap defaults 0 0

I get my rescue cd from http://www.sysresccd.org/Download

Download page has instructions for creating a bootable USB drive
from the iso file.

Gparted is nice in that you can type in the size of desired partition
and have partition alignment selection to get maximum performance
from the hard drives.

I create, format, label all desired partitions then do the install.
For grub2 to boot non-EFI you need a very small partition for grub2
software used for booting. I created mine on the end of the first drive
as 1 MiB then set the flag as bios grub.

That automagically sets the UUID to the correct value without me
having to know anything about it. During Mageia install I told it to
do a MBR on /dev/sda.

Besides doing backups to DVDs, I keep a few _bkup partitions for hot backup
and restores. Since I label all my partitions with the same media label
it was dead easy to format/label a backup usb drive and use a script
to read the labels on the usb drive and rsync those partition from my
hard drives to the usb drive.

I have no real experience with Slackware to speak of, but I always do clean
installs just in case I have to fall back to previous install. I cycle each
new release in three partitions, previous, current, next. Since I run
Mageia Linux, I also have a Cauldron partition for testing the next release.
/home is not shared across releases. Common files are linked to /accounts/$USER

$ lsblk -o NAME,TYPE,FSTYPE,MOUNTPOINT,SIZE,FSAVAIL,FSUSED,LABEL,PARTLABEL
NAME TYPE FSTYPE MOUNTPOINT SIZE FSAVAIL FSUSED LABEL PARTLABEL
sda disk 931.5G
├─sda1 part ext4 40G mga6 mga6
├─sda2 part ext4 42G mga5 mga5
├─sda3 part ext4 / 40.8G 23.8G 16.1G mga7 mga7
├─sda4 part ext4 40.5G cauldron cauldron
├─sda5 part ext4 /local 21.5G 20.5G 580.3M local local
├─sda6 part ext4 /accounts 22.4G 19.9G 2G accounts accounts
├─sda7 part ext4 /misc 59.4G 37.4G 20.9G misc misc
├─sda8 part ext4 /spare 73.2G 9.1G 62.7G spare spare
├─sda9 part ext4 /vmguest 362.2G 181G 175.1G vmguest vmguest
└─sda10 part 1M bios_grub
sdb disk 931.5G
├─sdb1 part swap [SWAP] 8G swap swap
├─sdb2 part ext4 20G bk_up bk_up
├─sdb3 part ext4 40G hotbu hotbu
├─sdb4 part ext4 40G cauldron_bkup cauldron_bkup
├─sdb5 part ext4 /myth 400G 392.2G 70.2M myth myth
├─sdb6 part ext4 40G net_ins net_ins
└─sdb7 part ext4 40G net_ins_bkup net_ins_bkup
sr0 rom 1024M
Javier
2020-07-08 20:18:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
I ordered 2 1Tb drives; I've got a single 500 GB hard drive in the current
system, and I don't use it all. Seagate (and others) are switching /some/ of
their drives to SMR (shingled magnetic recording), which, apparently, isn't
as fast as the CMR technology it supplants. According to Seagate themselves,
the only BarraCuda drive that /doesn't/ use SMR is the 1TB drive.
I ordered 2, knowing that I /might/ fill 1 in the upcoming years. With
judicious partitioning and proper backups, I can have recovery space on both
drives, and minimize the impact of a single drive failure.
I have never seen a reference to SMR or CMR in the specs of hard disks.
With respect to speed also consider is the spinning speed: 5400rpm or 7200rpm.
If you care about noise, power consumption and heat get 5400 rpm for anything
1 Tb or bigger.

Another thing to consider is the capacity of the harddisk. More Tb
means more plates and more heat and noise, and that possibly decreases
the lifetime of the HD, the PSU and the computer. That is something
to consider in laptops and desktop computers with compact form factors
(ie tabletop pcs).

Bigger specs does not necessarily mean better. I would say that a 1
Tb disk and a 2 Tb disk from the same maker do not have the same
lifetimes.

You can buy an HD with a lower spinning speed (5400rpm instead of 7200rpm)
to decrease the power comsumption (at the cost of incresing access times).

Another good idea for speed is to use an SSD. If you are worried
about writing cycles and loss of data, put / (it seldom gets
overwritten) in an SSD and put /home (and possibly /var) into a HDD.
Disabling logs should increase a bit the performance. Use /tmp in ramfs
anythings that is ephemeral.

BTW there was a thread in January here in AOLS about HDs:

Subject: Is there a rotary hd size vs lifetime dependence?
Message-ID: <luudnZahw_rn_orDnZ2dnUU7-***@giganews.com>
Henrik Carlqvist
2020-07-09 17:34:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by Javier
Slackware 14.2 is four years old and that it comes with a 4.4.14 linux
kernel from 2016, so using bleeding hardware is something I wouldn't
advice.
Booting from the official installation media you will get kernel 4.4.14,
but once installed after you have installed the latest security patches
you will get kernel 4.4.227. If you so wish you can even build your own
iso image with a more up-to-date 14.2 Slackware.

Many have given advice about UEFI/Legacy boot and GPT/DOS partition
table. As your disks are smaller than 2TB and you have used Slackware for
many years I suppose that you are familiar with LILO. If you wan't to
keep running LILO I would suggest legacy boot and DOS partition table.

Switching to another bootloader is possible, but the easy way to install
Slackware is to use LILO as that is what the installation scripts does.

For systems which had to have UEFI boot I prefer syslinux instead of
GRUB, but that is mostly because I am used to booting with isolinux and
pxelinux.

regards Henrik
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-09 17:51:17 UTC
Permalink
Hi, Henrik
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
Post by Javier
Slackware 14.2 is four years old and that it comes with a 4.4.14 linux
kernel from 2016, so using bleeding hardware is something I wouldn't
advice.
Booting from the official installation media you will get kernel 4.4.14,
but once installed after you have installed the latest security patches
you will get kernel 4.4.227. If you so wish you can even build your own
iso image with a more up-to-date 14.2 Slackware.
I keep a running, local, "mirror" of the latest patches for /all/ of the
14.x series packages, both 32bit and 64bit. My plan is to install the stock
Slackware 14.2 distribution, then immediately upgradepkg everything to
what's in my mirror (now current to July 9'th, 2020). Since I have all this
on my local network, I only need to get 14.2's basic networking working to
perform the upgrade.
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
Many have given advice about UEFI/Legacy boot and GPT/DOS partition
table. As your disks are smaller than 2TB and you have used Slackware for
many years I suppose that you are familiar with LILO.
Right on the button!
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
If you wan't to
keep running LILO I would suggest legacy boot and DOS partition table.
I can do that.
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
Switching to another bootloader is possible, but the easy way to install
Slackware is to use LILO as that is what the installation scripts does.
I know that 14.2 comes with ELILO (for EFI) and GRUB. While I haven't used
either before, on Slackware, I'm not scared of change. GRUB might be the
better choice, going forward.
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
For systems which had to have UEFI boot I prefer syslinux
I vaguely recognize the name; Slackware's bootable ISO uses syslinux. Up to
now, I had not realized that syslinux was a boot loader that I could use in
this setup. I'll have to look into it.
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
instead of GRUB, but that is mostly because I am used to booting with
isolinux and pxelinux.
Sounds like an interesting setup. Would you mind emailing me some of the
details? I'd like to know more.


Thanks for the information and advice. I appreciate it, especially as my new
machine sits, newly unboxed, on the floor beside me, waiting for it's first
boot.
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Bit Twister
2020-07-09 17:56:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
I know that 14.2 comes with ELILO (for EFI) and GRUB. While I haven't used
either before, on Slackware, I'm not scared of change. GRUB might be the
better choice, going forward.
One of the advantages of grub is the ability to boot from a hard drive iso file.
root
2020-07-09 20:55:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Bit Twister
Post by Lew Pitcher
I know that 14.2 comes with ELILO (for EFI) and GRUB. While I haven't used
either before, on Slackware, I'm not scared of change. GRUB might be the
better choice, going forward.
One of the advantages of grub is the ability to boot from a hard drive iso file.
grub can access an M2 ssd, lilo cannot.
Henrik Carlqvist
2020-07-10 05:32:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by root
grub can access an M2 ssd, lilo cannot.
So can syslinux. At some occasion when installing to an M2 disk I had to
patch the kernel to recognize the disk, but that was for a very specific
nvme disk, if I remember right it was some samsung.

regards Henrik
Henrik Carlqvist
2020-07-10 05:41:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
Post by root
grub can access an M2 ssd, lilo cannot.
So can syslinux.
However, one capability that syslinux amazingly misses is the capability
to boot from a CD/DVD in UEFI mode. For that I know no other option than
GRUB.

regards Henrik
Javier
2020-07-10 16:17:23 UTC
Permalink
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
Post by root
grub can access an M2 ssd, lilo cannot.
So can syslinux.
However, one capability that syslinux amazingly misses is the capability
to boot from a CD/DVD in UEFI mode. For that I know no other option than
GRUB.
I never tried that, but Isolinux should be able to boot a CD/DVD in UEFI mode.

https://wiki.syslinux.org/wiki/index.php?title=Isohybrid
Henrik Carlqvist
2020-07-10 19:09:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by Javier
I never tried that, but Isolinux should be able to boot a CD/DVD in UEFI mode.
https://wiki.syslinux.org/wiki/index.php?title=Isohybrid
Cool! I must try that some day!

regards Henrik
root
2020-07-09 20:53:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
I know that 14.2 comes with ELILO (for EFI) and GRUB. While I haven't used
either before, on Slackware, I'm not scared of change. GRUB might be the
better choice, going forward.
I posted here a small c program that takes lilo.conf and generate grub.cfg

Let me know if you want the program.
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-09 21:06:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by root
Post by Lew Pitcher
I know that 14.2 comes with ELILO (for EFI) and GRUB. While I haven't
used either before, on Slackware, I'm not scared of change. GRUB might be
the better choice, going forward.
I posted here a small c program that takes lilo.conf and generate grub.cfg
Let me know if you want the program.
Thanks for the offer. I may take you up on it later.
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Henrik Carlqvist
2020-07-10 05:39:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
Post by Henrik Carlqvist
For systems which had to have UEFI boot I prefer syslinux
Sounds like an interesting setup. Would you mind emailing me some of the
details? I'd like to know more.
If I remember rigth I basically followed these steps:

https://docs.slackware.com/
howtos:slackware_admin:set_up_syslinux_as_boot_loader_on_uefi_based_hardware

regards Henrik
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-11 16:49:32 UTC
Permalink
Hi, gals and guys

Thanks to all your excellent advice, I managed to successfully install 64bit
Slackware 14.2 on my new machine. I chose to move to EUFI boot and GPT
partitioning, and managed to successfully install and configure it all. I
now have a working 64bit Slackware on a modern system.

My next steps will be to customize the system and migrate the users from my
old 32bit Slackware 14.0 system.

Thanks for all the advice and help. I appreciate it muchly ;-)
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Henrik Carlqvist
2020-07-12 18:28:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
My next steps will be to customize the system and migrate the users from
my old 32bit Slackware 14.0 system.
During the years my experience from migrating users from one version of
Slackware to another is that it is usually painless going to a newer
version of Slackware but troublesome going to an older version of
Slackware. This might cause issues in a mixed environment with different
machines running different versions of Slackware in a network. If the
users then have their home directories on something like an NFS server
they might get trouble if the log in to an older version of Slackware
after having been logged in to a newer version.

There are some ways to avoid such trouble:

* In the files /etc/profile.d/kde.* I set KDEHOME to $HOME/.kde_slack142
* I add custom files /etc/profile.d/wine.* were I set WINEPREFIX to
$HOME/.wine_slack142

regards Henrik
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-16 23:03:29 UTC
Permalink
Re: Success (was Re: Installing 64bit Slackware for the first time.)
Post by Lew Pitcher
Hi, gals and guys
Thanks to all your excellent advice, I managed to successfully install
64bit Slackware 14.2 on my new machine.
[snip]
Post by Lew Pitcher
My next steps will be to customize the system
I have a minor problem with some system customizations revolving around
audio.

On my Slackware 14.0 system, I have a self-written daemon that serializes
text-to-speech output to audio. This daemon handles requests to verbalize
text messages, and ensures that the flite tts system completely "speaks" the
message before continueing on to the next. On startup, the daemon verbally
announces itself, so that you can tell that it is running.

I use this as a system-level daemon that runs under runlevel 3 /or/ 4, and
speaks whether there is a user logged in or not.

This works well under ALSA, although I have to depend (somewhat) on external
influences to set and reset the volume.


Now, I've moved this daemon to pulseaudio (actually, I moved flite TTS to
pulseaudio, the daemon uses libflite to process text to speech), and I want
to start it from inittab. (the Slackware 14.0 system starts it from
inittab).

BUT

unless I start pulseaudio as a systemwide daemon (/etc/rc.d/rc.pulseaudio),
I'm entirely dependant on the desktop having started the pulseaudio server.
And that won't work for runlevel 3. In runlevel 4, I have a timing issue;
pulseaudio doesn't seem to start up fast enough for my daemon to announce
itself.

I've tried a number of sequences, none of which *consistantly* allow the
daemon to announce itself.

I've tried starting my daemon after rc.4 runs, but the daemon doesnt see
pulseaudio running and shuts down.

I've tried enabling rc.pulseaudio and starting my daemon after rc.M, but
there seems to be a timing issue, and sometimes the verbal announcement
sounds mid-way through the speech.

I've tried enabling rc.pulseaudio and starting my daemon after rc.4, but
there seems to be a timing issue, and sometimes the verbal announcement
sounds mid-way through the speech. Also, this sometimes interferes with the
paplay that I have in my /etc/kde/kdm/Xsetup script that announces the
availability of the login screen.

I can keep this up all day, but I'm troubleshooting pulseaudio in the dark.

Question: /Why/ is it not recommended that you enable a system-wide
pulseaudio on a multiuser system? Is pulseaudio so poorly designed that it
can't support system-wide audio, and /needs/ a user?

Question: How can I set default volumes for pulseaudion streams? I'm
especially concerned about those momentary, program-generated streams (like
the stream coming from flite) that seem to not have a permenant mixer
setting.

Question: Is this the best the desktop.org people can do? If so, then heaven
help us. (that's a rhetorical question :-) )

[snip]

Thanks in advance for your sympathy, and your advice.
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Henrik Carlqvist
2020-07-17 10:49:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
Question: /Why/ is it not recommended that you enable a system-wide
pulseaudio on a multiuser system?
There is a list of reasons described at

https://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Software/PulseAudio/Documentation/User/
WhatIsWrongWithSystemWide/

Examples of such reasons are that remote users will be able to listen to
what is being said at the console microphone.

regards Henrik
K Venken
2020-07-17 13:44:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
Question: Is this the best the desktop.org people can do? If so, then heaven
help us. (that's a rhetorical question :-) )
It may be a long shot but in slackware-current/extra, there is a
description of how to return to a pure alsa system. I am not sure you
can apply it (read backport) to 14.2?

kind regards
Rich
2020-07-17 14:09:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by K Venken
Question: Is this the best the desktop.org people can do? If so,
then heaven help us. (that's a rhetorical question :-) )
It may be a long shot but in slackware-current/extra, there is a
description of how to return to a pure alsa system. I am not sure
you can apply it (read backport) to 14.2?
There is also a pulseaudio shim available on slackbuilds:

https://slackbuilds.org/repository/14.2/audio/apulse/

This pretends to be /enough/ of a pulseaudio server to allow most apps
to work (I've only tested it with modern Firefox that dropped native
Alsa support, and it worked there).

This might also be a solution to 'global' sound.
Lew Pitcher
2020-07-17 17:22:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
Re: Success (was Re: Installing 64bit Slackware for the first time.)
Post by Lew Pitcher
Hi, gals and guys
Thanks to all your excellent advice, I managed to successfully install
64bit Slackware 14.2 on my new machine.
[snip]
Post by Lew Pitcher
My next steps will be to customize the system
I have a minor problem with some system customizations revolving around
audio.
[snip]

I've done some thinking, and I think I can make my daemon work within the
pulseaudio environment: make it it's own "user" and have it start a user-
level pulseaudio for it's own use.

While I'll have to live with some inconvenience for a while, I think that
this change would fit both pulseaudio, and my evolving plans for the daemon.

(FWIW, I intended this daemon to be part of a home-automation system I'm
growing.)
--
Lew Pitcher
"In Skills, We Trust"
Bit Twister
2020-07-17 18:01:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lew Pitcher
I've done some thinking, and I think I can make my daemon work within the
pulseaudio environment: make it it's own "user" and have it start a user-
level pulseaudio for it's own use.
Not sure why you have to do that.

I have pulseaudio running as a system wide daemon, created a pulse-access
group, and added the audio and pulse-access groups to users wanting to use
the system's audio hardware. I do used alsa to reset the volume back to
a know value after use. For example I was always cranking up the volume
in the browser account when browsing on the internet and when one of the
other user accounts play sound it was way too loud. So I have alsa reset
volume upon exit.

I am the only person on the system but use separate Linux accounts for
each activity on the internet requiring an id/pw (browsing, creaditcard, bank,..).
$ grep accounts /etc/passwd | wc -l
26

For cron jobs I gave root
$ id root
uid=0(root) gid=0(root) groups=0(root),81(audio),92(pulse-access)
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