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Some notes about installing MandrakeFreq 7.2 on the Church100 server, initially focusing more on incidental things than the networking setup.

Aside: My intent for the time being is to build my servers on Mandrake 7.2 (until I find a reason I cannot) at least partially because many of my machines have limited memory (max of 128 MB, many at 64 MB). I will maintain one faster machine with more memory (700 MHz., 256 MB RAM to be my "experimental" desktop machine and periodically move to more recent distros. In addition to working around my lack of memory problem, this will minimize the need to reconfigure servers that I've managed to get working with each new upgrade.

See AboutThesePages.




Because this machine will be on a private LAN, with no connection to the Internet (at least for the time being) I tried to install all the services I think I might eventually need, without much regard to security.

Mail Server First

My intent is to get a mail server running first on this machine, then consider either doing jabber or Apache with TWiki.


I installed KDE so that I would have some GUI available to me, including a web browser (konqueror). (While the machine is at my home, I can connect to the Internet and keep notes on WikiLearn.)

With only 64 MB on the machine, I don't expect to use the GUI stuff while the server is performing as a server.

Wrong Keyboard

Oops, I apparently installed the wrong US keyboard (must have picked the international version) as I have some dead keys -- for example, must type ' twice to get it to appear. (Also, I apparently selected NumLock at some point during the install, because every time I switch to a different virtual terminal, the NumLock indicator light is on.

I should learn how to change the keyboard without doing a complete reinstall.


The default fonts in konqueror were ugly and almost unusable. I wanted to install some Windows True Type fonts, but I found that I did not have DrakFont installed, which seems to be what I've used in the past.

I did a little investigation, on a (Mandrake 7.2) machine that uses TrueType fonts, they are installed in directory /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/drakfont/arial.ttf (for example). Trouble is, I don know what else must be done to make them work.

So, I've gone to the Settings -> Configure Konqueror -> Konqueror Browser -> Appearance menu, and tried changing the "standard font". The Couriers work reasonably well (much better than the default Helvetica), but right now I using Terminal, with other settings at Medium and minimum font size 18.

The standard font in the Konqueror text edit box seems reasonable.

Install Fest

The LVLUG had an install fest at Pat Davila's home yesterday. (We call them install fests, it's more like somebody who needs help with something invites the group to an install fest at his home to get help with the problems he is having). Anyway, I took the Church100 computer along to try to get help in setting up a mail server. I already had MandrakeFreq 7.2 installed with a ton of servers enabled.

Dann Washko and Linc Fessenden provided some help (when not busy with Pat's computer).

Switched Ethernet Card (NIC) to RJ-45

The first thing I had to do was switch the 3Com3C509 NIC to use the RJ-45 port instead of the coax connector (which I use at home). See EthernetCards3Com3C509 -- basically I booted into Dos (Win95) (on a floppy), then ran the 3c5x9cfg.exe program on the second drivers disk, pressed <F4> and hung on (some of the keys are surprising -- had to read screen to see which keys to use).

Methods to Add New Users

I found the adduserdrake command, which must be run as root. It looks like the GUI used to create new users during the Mandrake 7.2 install, and thus I plan to use it -- I assuming it will create the user's home directory and add users to appropriate groups and so forth, and thus may be slightly easier than useradd. Aside: By doing locate adduser I learned that adduser is just an alias for useradd.

Other relevant files are /etc/passwd, /etc/group, /etc/shadow.

When running adduserdrake from the command line in the foreground, you may need to give it enough time to finish -- I interrupted it by pressing <ctrl>c and didn notice a problem, but ...

Changing the IP Address

Because I had the IP Address set to, and the network at the install fest was 192.168.1.x, we had to change the IP address. This is what we did:

Changed the IP Address of the Ethernet Card

ifconfig eth0 up

Then ran ifconfig to check it.

I did the above with Linc's coaching -- later Dann did something similar but added the netmask to it, and, IIRC, defined a gateway with a second line. (So, such things can be done with ifconfig.)

Oops, I just realized (by running ifconfig) that I back to being -- and I didn't change it today -- maybe that means that changes done by ifconfig don't survive a shutdown / reboot.

Changed IP Address in /etc/hosts

So the file looked like this:       localhost.localdomain   localhost    church100.home  church100

Aside: Since I read somewhere that an FQDN (fully qualified domain name) is required for an email server, at some point I may need to change "church100.home" to something like "church100.home.org". According to the sources I found, an FQDN does not necessarily have to be registered to work for email, or to be an FQDN.

Ping I

A neat thing -- ping pings everybody on the 192.168.1 subnet.

Ping II

At the install fest (with the IP address set to, I could not ping anybody on 192.168.1 (which is what all the other computers were set to). I think the problem was with my routing table (on this computer) in that the network is defined as and was set as a default gateway -- any packets for anything other than the subnet were "wrapped" and sent to, which didn't exist at the install fest. Nope, I don't think that explains it, as how did that change when I set the IP address to -- the packets would still have been "wrapped" and sent to, which still did not exist, but, the pings did work.

Hmm, just used ifconfig to change the IP address to then checked the routing table -- the local network route got changed from to which explains something.

Also, the default gateway went away. Aside: with the IP address set to, the routing table takes a while to display the default gateway, which makes me think something is not configured ideally.


Dann first did a test on this machine -- sending mail from user01 to user01. I going to try this again today, maybe from user02 to user02 just to keep the results for user01 from yesterday unadulterated. I'll try it with two different IP addresses, because I don't think it should make a difference.

Oops, have to change the IP address back in order to save this page -- as it is not finding the default gateway to send stuff back to twiki.org. Interesting -- having just changed it back, the default gateway does not appear in the routing table. I guess I'll have to set the gateway explicitly.

OK, sort of -- I added it with route add default gw, but it took a fairly long time for the gateway to show up when I displayed the routing table. I wonder why? Well, let's see if we can save this.


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  • () RandyKramer - 28 Jul 2002
  • <If you edit this page: add your name here; move this to the next line; and include your comment marker (initials), if you have created one, in parenthesis before your WikiName.>

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