Step 3: Install Ubuntu

April 29, 2007

Finally it was time to install Ubuntu to the newly created partitions. I booted to the Ubuntu CD and …

wait … what’s going on? Why am I in 640×480 mode? It’s always been fine before.

Did I accidentally choose safe graphics mode? Sure – that’s what I must have done.

So I rebooted and made doubly sure I selected the proper startup option. This is looking much better … wait … the screen just flashed. I’m in 640×480 again. Perhaps it’s just a configuration problem. System -> Preferences -> Screen Resolution … yup … 640×480 – so I’ll just select the drop-down l…

There are no other options.

Why do I care so much? Because the Ubuntu installer does not run properly in 640×480 because the control buttons (forward, back, etc) are not visible – the windows are too large and they do not have the option to scroll.

I went through this dance twice before actually choosing to start in the graphics safe mode.

Well in safe graphics mode it worked as expected! 1280×1024 resolution. I have no idea what happened. I’m going to call it an anomaly and not worry about it. I don’t know enough about Ubuntu to assume it was anything other than user error.

Since I was in a decent resolution I ran the installer by using the “Install” link on the desktop.

Installing was a breeze. I had to pick my timezone, keyboard info, create an account for myself, and manually configure the partitions I created earlier. Then about 20 minutes later the installation was complete.

I rebooted and was greeted by a new boot loader that let me choose between a few Ubuntu options and Windows XP. Exactly what I hoped for.

I booted to Ubuntu, logged in using the account I created, opened a terminal window and created a symbolic link from a directory under /media/sda5 (the shared drive – it took me a little while to find the proper location) into my home directory. Now I can easily share data between the two systems.

Oh – and my NTFS drive is mounted too so I guess that was unnecessary but I’m glad to have done it since it was a good learning experience.

Now that it’s working – its time to move on to the next pet project.