There are a couple of things I want to say before beginning with the real content of this post. First of all, I want to apologize for not having written a post for a few days. That said, I did warn at the beginning of this semester that my work may make me busy enough to be unable to write a post, and that's exactly what happened in these few days. Furthermore, it will likely happen again soon, as I anticipate being fairly busy this weekend and next week.
Second, this is not a Debian version that I wanted to test for the sake of testing it; my ultimate goal is to install the Trinity DE and thus make an Oxidized Trinity variant based on Debian. There will be no screenshots because most of the action occurs at the terminal; the finished Oxidized Trinity screenshots will be included in a separate article (because I haven't yet finished). Debian needs no further introduction, so follow the jump to see the rest. I followed these tutorials to do this: this one on doing a net installation of "Squeeze", and this one on doing a minimal net installation of Debian 4 "Etch" with the X Windowing System.
This time I did things a little differently. Yes, I did this in VirtualBox with 1024 MB of RAM, but instead of downloading a Debian Live image, I downloaded a netinstall ISO image and proceeded straight into the installation (upon booting the system). Based on the tutorials, I went into the text-based installer as opposed to the graphical installer.
The installer itself was fairly intuitive. I created a 1 GB swap partition and left the rest of my 10 GB virtual hard drive to the root partition. Also, I opted not to install any extra components except for the "Standard system". (Side note: I accidentally pressed 'ENTER' instead of 'SPACE' to deselect "Desktop environment", so I had to force reboot and do it all over again.) The installation was quick and painless and after about 15 minutes I rebooted and found myself at a shiny, blingtastic terminal. Come on, it's the new black! (Hehheh.) I then logged in as root, which is a very bad security practice but is common in these sort of bare-bones configurations (and you will see why in a moment).
The first thing I did was install and configure "sudo" (because, surprisingly enough, even that isn't available out-of-the-box). To do this, I first typed "aptitude install sudo" (as I was already logged in as root) and waited for Aptitude to finish the installation. Then I typed "visudo" to edit the "sudoers" file; this allowed me to give the default user (which I called "live") permission to use the "sudo" command. To do this, I entered under the line "root ALL=(ALL) ALL" the line "live ALL=(ALL) ALL" (replace "live" with your login name). I then saved with 'Ctrl+O' and exited with 'Ctrl+X'. (If you haven't already figured this out, this is extremely keyboard/command-heavy. Make of that what you will.) I then added the repositories I wanted by typing "nano /etc/apt/sources.list" (Nano is a terminal-based text editor) and added the repositories for Trinity as well as for multimedia codecs (which, incidentally, I still haven't gotten around to installing); I then used the aforementioned commands to save and quit. Finally, I did an "apt-get update" and an "apt-get install desktop-base-trinity kde-trinity", and waited for a while.
The good news is that it worked. The nice thing about this system is that I can customize the settings differently for default and root logins, so I took this opportunity to make root "scary", as is often asked for in the Linux community. The odd thing is that every single package was installed, so I am now left with a lot of useless junk. Oh well.
It was a nice experience being able to have this much control over my system. Maybe this is why Arch is supposed to be so good. Stay tuned for a final[ish, but not really] report on the state of Debian-based Oxidized Trinity!