Monday, December 11, 2006

Installing CentOS 4.4 under Virtual PC 2004

CentOS is a free version of RedHat Enterprise Linux which closely mirrors the commercial version. There are many places in the 'verse which detail changing the default color depth from 24-bit to 16-bit for the S3 Trio adapter that VPC emulates. After doing this I tried 'startx' only to find it wouldn't work so I started digging.

The X windowing environment started up then flashed and shutdown again with a console error of unable to find .xterm'. Checking around, I found examples from one cranky coot (a.k.a. Jason) under the heading 'Get GUI'. Turns out CentOS uses a package manager called 'yum' and he lists the commands for installing X11. I got as far as the the fonts before getting errors so I figured I fire it up again and see what happened. I did get a desktop but the size was way too big and unusable.

Jason also showed commands for installing XFCE which is a lighter and faster X-windowing system. So I tried that, typed in 'startxfce4' and voila! I then tried browsing the web only to get an error about Firefox not being installed. No problem - I opened a console window and tried 'yum install firefox' and it worked.

Hope this helps an old Windows developer like me ;)

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