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Re: My (unpleasant) fedora 10 installation experience

On Mon, 2008-12-01 at 17:41 +0300, Lev Shamardin wrote:
> Hi all,
> Today the file system on my wife's laptop got corrupted (that's another sad
> fedora, kerneloops and tuxonice story) and I decided to reinstall everything
> from scratch using Fedora 10 installation DVD. The laptop previously had Fedora
> 9 installed, so my plan was to reinstall the system and then restore the /home
> partition with fsck & co.
> The installation process from the DVD went quite smoothly, but when I got to the
> first boot there were some surprises. Since I was going to recover /home later,
> I was not planning to create any users at the first boot, but skipping the
> "Create user" screen required to press the "Use network login..." button and
> cancel the dialog, otherwise the firstboot continued to complain that I
> definitely need to create a user.
> This laptop uses wireless to connect to the internet, and guess what? Is is NOT
> yet configured when you are running the firstboot. On the Date & Time screen I
> selected "Enable network time protocol", pressed forward, and then hit Cancel on
> the "Contacting NTP..." dialog (I supposed that I don't want to wait for the
> network timeout) and... Firstboot crashed leaving me with an empty screen with a
> mouse cursor on it. Ctrl-Alt-F1/F2/etc. brought me to another empty screen,
> without a mouse this time. Fortunately Ctrl-Alt-Del from that mouseless screen
> worked fine.
> Next boot showed firstboot again allowing to test these bugs and finally get
> through them to discover another surprise.
> I've selected "Russian" keyboard during the installation process. Usually this
> assumed that there are two keyboard layouts (English and Russian) and you can
> switch between them with a hotkey. But not in the default state of the GDM after
> the first boot. The only option I had was Russian input! I tried all common
> layout switch shortcuts but have not managed to find one to switch the layout to
> english, but I had to type something in english since I have not created any
> users and my root user had both english login name and password. So I had to go
> to the menus, search for USA keyboard layout and only after this had a chance to
> try login to the system. It really seems to me that these layout defaults are
> insane. Is it that common to have non-english login names and passwords, really?
> Anyway, I failed to login interactively to X as root ("Cannot authenticate
> user") and after that even selecting Keyboard: USA did not bring english input
> to the gdm! I tried to switch several times, nothing happened. Adding a second
> USA layout (USA international this time) partially solved the problem with
> switching input language, but I still was not able to login as root to a
> graphical terminal to recover the system. Of course some searching in google
> delivered the answer that I have to modify the gdm PAM settings, but that only
> brought me to a discovery that gdm forgets the input language and layout
> settings after asking for the user name! So the complete "root login" procedure
> looks like this:
> 1. Press "other user..." [Why should I do this if there are no users in the
> system except root?]
> 2. Switch layout to USA. [First switch is broken, so]
> 3. Switch layout to USA (intl). [Aha, english letters finally]
> 4. Enter user name
> 5. Switch layout to USA. [Don't forget: the first switch is broken]
> 6. Switch layout to USA (intl).
> 7. Enter the root password.
> Phew, That was easy!
> Never ever before a fresh Fedora installation was that hostile towards system
> recovery... Especially to a non-US user. That is sad.
> With best regards,
> Lev.


I'd suggest you file a bug report against firstboot (Cannot skip user
creation, broken NTP due to broken NetworkManager auto-configuration)
and GDM (Invalid language selection, missing switch-to-US-English
option) and post the BZ# here.

I doubt that anyone here will disagree that these bugs should be fixed
in F11, so beyond venting, I doubt that a starting a discussion about
these bugs will produce anything useful.

- Gilboa

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