== PROBLEM ==
Can't install redhat linux 5.2 on brand new AMD K2-2/350 system.
== SYMPTOMS ==
Each time I get to the point where I have chosen all the packages I want
to install, it starts transferring files from CD-ROM to my hard drive,
and about 10-20% into the copying process, the file transfers slow way
down, the CD-ROM and the hard disk sound like they are working very
hard. Then I may or may not get some warnings of the form "<file> load
failed - bad file descriptor", or "<file> failed, execution of script
failed", or "<file> failed, I/O error". After about an hour of this, I
usually get the following fatal error: "kernel panic: VFS: can not mount
root fs on 08:22".
After each attempt, I run WDDIAG (which came with my new Western Digital
hard drive), and it finds between 9 and 186 bad sectors. Each time,
WDDIAG is able to 'repair' all the bad sectors, and then I try again.
== SOLUTION ==
I found my problem! It was the CD-ROM drive! It was a Digital Research
36x, $50 at CompUSA. I put in an old 4x drive and linux install booted
and completed flawlessly. Then I went out and bought a name-brand fast
CD-ROM drive (Creative Labs 48x). Linux install failed to boot from the
CD-ROM, but after booting from floppy, install completed with a few
errors of the form "package xyz failed". Then I went and bought another
CD-ROM drive, this one an Acer 40x that said ATAPI on it ($80 at
CompUSA). This one also failed to boot linux install, but after booting
from floppy, it installed with no errors.
Linux seems to be really picky about the new fast CD-ROM drives. I'm
keeping the Acer. I successfully installed linux and Windows 98, and can
boot either from LILO. Now comes the linux configuration fun...