We are going to discuss a problem that we are hearing of from time to time with some newer users of Linux or of Peach. The issue stems from the new user not being able to install Peach OSI onto their computer. Typically I will get an email informing me that something is wrong with Peach OSI and the new user will say something like, “I’ve tried to install Peach OSI Barebones repeatedly and each time the installation hangs during the installation process.” This can be frustrating and if the user is trying to install Peach with Windows or any other operating system the failed installation can render their computer incapable of booting any operating system.
Let me start off by saying that the following may not be true of everyone who has this issue. But something like in 95 of 100 times that I get an email like this – the solution turns out to be what I am going to describe to you below. You need to understand that this failure to install would have happened to you no matter which version of Linux you would have chosen to use. The issue is not a problem with Linux, it usually is a problem with how you have equipped your particular PC. Sometimes you may have unwittingly added some hardware to your PC that cannot be allotted for during the boot process. Let me explain…
Most of the time when I get an email like the one above the real problem turns out to be a person with an older computer that has PS/2 connections for their keyboard and mouse. Over time the user of this PC has purchased a USB or a Wireless keyboard and/or mouse. When installing the operating system the installer reads what equipment (called peripherals) is installed in or attached to the computer from the BIOS. Many times the BIOS is older than the hardware that is installed on the computer so the BIOS has no idea of what a wireless or USB keyboard or mouse is. Many people will use adapters such as a USB to PS/2 adapter or a wireless adapter which you would think would mimic a PS/2 connection but in reality they do not. That interpretation is performed at the BIOS level. The reason that this simple issue is unknown to the user is that they have installed this hardware while already using an installed operating system and that operating system has been developed after the development of that hardware and thus the operating system can compensate for the lack of communication that is inherently their in the BIOS. The truth is that you would most likely experience this issue even if you were installing any version of any operating system, even Windows. So you see, the issue is not the operating systems fault it is a fault that is caused by a BIOS on a computer that was not developed for the hardware that you have installed.
Now I need to add some other hardware that can cause this issue. Let’s say you are installing Peach (or any other operating system) with an external USB DVD drive. Guess what? If that external drive cannot be found in the BIOS then you cannot use that external drive. Furthermore, even if you happen to see the drive and select in in the BIOS, sometimes the installation may fail or not complete when the installation medium gets to the point that it tries to install control drivers for your particular external drive. Why? You ask. Think of it like this. The operating sees the external drive as a USB drive, the BIOS is telling the installation medium that the drive is a DVD drive (if it’s telling the installation medium anything at all). Now we have a problem. The installation medium starts setting up the drive as a USB drive and then it goes to read its next job to perform from the external DVD drive and oops, where did the DVD drive go? The DVD drive is no longer there, the installer is now seeing a USB drive and due to the older BIOS – one which didn’t allow for a USB external DVD drive – we have a problem Houston. So the installer quits because it can no longer read its next task or function that it needs to perform.
The same can be true for an external floppy drive or anything else that you have additionally installed to your computer. Now I generally try to initially connect everything to a computer that I intend to use on that computer prior to installation because it saves a lot of time letting the installer setup as many of or all of those devices that it possibly can but you need to be aware that sometimes, in rare circumstances, one or more of these peripherals can cause a problem during the installation of any operating system. If such a problem does arise for you, start by looking at your keyboard and mouse. You may have to find that old PS/2 set if you still have them. If that isn’t it, look at how you are installing the medium. Are you installing from an added on device like an external drive or an external DVD? If not, is there anything else connected to your PC, perhaps a USB Bluetooth device or Bluetooth keyboard or mouse. Eventually you should be able to discover the culprit as to your particular installation issue.