Manage to boot yout computer with Nbed-Nakooki, tutorial

Basic knowledge, tips, FAQ

Step 1

Here's the screen you obtain when the computer boots from the CD.

Another Operating system is booting instead, or the BIOS complain it can't find a system disk.

Check if your BIOS if you specified the proper boot device(s), in the right order. CD(s) must come before hard drive.
For example, a classic boot sequence looks like: FD (floppy), CD0 (first CD-ROM or DVD), CD1 (second one if existing), LAN (network), USB/ZIP (removable media) , HD0, HD1

Step 2

If you want to boot in simple console mode (a single shell prompt in text mode), select with the UP and DOWN arrows the appropriate line, according to the location of the CD-ROM drive in which you inserted Nbed-Nakooki.

Why do I have to specify IDE location, other Live-Cd's don't ask that ?

Yes, this could be avoided by using an additional step called Initrd (initial ramdisk), a small volatile operating system loaded in memory, before it gives hand to the real one (the Linux kernel located on the CD), that can be used to automatically prob CD-ROM location.
But this is much more complicated to maintain, over time - and is out of the scope of this demonstration live-CD. Anyway, it can of course be implemented by third party projects, as needed.

Will my SCSI, USB, parallel port ATAPI CD-ROM will work here ?

You can give a try, but most likely the answer will be: NO.
Here again, an Initrd or at least a more dedicated kernel compilation is required. This live-CD is from the beginning intended for regular internal IDE CD-ROM drives, only that.

I Don't know what's the location of my drive.

Have a look at the BIOS messages just after you turn the machine on. You can also enter the BIOS setup, where these kind of information are generally given. Anyway, it won't hurt to give a try to the 2nd and 4th entries - most PC are installed with hard drives as Master, and CD drives as Slaves.

Step 3

If you rather want to obtain a cool Desktop, in a Graphical environment, your better start point is the 5th entry Example commands for X-auto + Graphic login.

Go on this line (with arrows), press the e key (memo: Edit), you reach a set of command like these ones:

Move to the kernel line, press e again, you must adapt some values to reflect your configuration (or wishes).

Let's see that point by point (details are also given in the cheatcodes entry)

First, change the keyboard settings (for X, not console) to your needs.
For example, a German user will need something like pc105:de.
pc105, pc101, pc102 and many others are possible. In doubt, keep pc105 or go ask Google.

Now, adapt the driver for your graphic card. Change the example ati value to the one you need.
Some very common ones:

nv(non accelerated nvidia)
ati generic ati, accelerated on older model, works ok with others
i810 Intel i810 found on many laptops and cheap machines
vesaif nothing else works

The complete list, computed from /usr/X11R6/lib/modules/drivers:

apm ark ati atimisc chips cirrus_alpine cirrus cirrus_laguna cyrix dummy fbdev glint i128 i740 i810 mga neomagic nsc nv r128 radeon rendition riva128 s3 s3virge savage siliconmotion sis tdfx tga trident tseng vesa vga via vmware

You can have a look here in case of problems or doubts.

Don't forget to modify if required the color depth (6th field) and the resolution (7th field), to obtain best results.

In case of problems with a given driver, try to lower these values (i.e: 16bits instead of 24 or 32, 800x600 instead of 1024x768...) to see this solves the problem.

When done, simply press "enter" to confirm the change, and press 'b' to boot.

I specified proper values, but X won't work

Current is by default trying to find optimal vertical/horizontal refresh rates for the monitor, using a system called: DDC - On some devices, this won't work, or badly - to solve this you can explicitly specify these values (these are in the manual of the monitor) using the monitor= cheatcode.

Step 4

When the kernel starts to load you will see lots of line like these:

Step 5

During the runlevel 1, you are asked to choose a console keymap (nothing to do with X, don't be confused: these are completely separated settings !).
Just prick a choice in the list.

You can then test the keyboard, change it again if required or else, continue.

Step 6

Now you have to select a locale/charset combination - choose the proper one in the list.

When done, boot sequence continues as usual:

Step 7

When entering Runlevel 3 (network) you can choose to configure a network card. Answer yes, if you want to later use the network card with dhcp (cable, LAN, ...), with pppoe (DSL), or for other purpose.

Indicate the device name:

Choose a configuration tool (use ethernet-config to be able to use pppoe later).

With dhcp-config, you only have to answer yes to the Activate at boot time ? question and you're done.
With ethernet config, you have to enter values to setup the card:

Later you can configure pppoe if required.

Normally the card(s) will be setup, and Internet connection started.

Step 8 is starting to run, it takes a few seconds:

And you finally reach GDM, where you can select a session - recommended ones are:

  • xfce
  • openbox
  • pekwm

Login as User: nbed, Password: nbed

Now you can explore your desktop and run applications, using the menus.


If you like the Live-CD you can install its content as a regular distribution, on a hard drive, with the Nbed-HD-install command (use it as root). Simply take care to create a mount-point within /mnt/live before, and to mount the target partition there.

The process is very simple, the only required information is the mount-point location.

Please pay special attention to this:

  • Check your partition is large enough (min 1.8GB required, more is better).
  • Be sure to empty the partition(s) before, Nbed-HD-install won't do it.
  • Be sure to use a supported format. I'd recommand Reiserfs or Ext3 - common, simple and robust.
  • Be sure to use a perfectly burned CD, defficient CD-RW can cause process to hang out, you're warned, CD-R are better.
  • Commands (and their man pages) like: mount, mkfs, parted, cfdisk, fdisk.
  • If you don't understand what's disussed here, don't do it, to avoid damaging your partitions - or read docs before.
  • MBR and partitions boot sector are left as is, no boot loader is installed. You can either install grub from the grub shell of the CD, once Nbed-HD-install - or modify your current boot loader (i.e: lilo, grub...) configuration.

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