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#1 2019-02-08 13:25:33

NeleR
Member
Registered: 2019-02-08
Posts: 7

Installation screens not readable

I created a bootable USB with BunsenLabs Helium / amd64. I did a check on the SHA-256 and this was fine. I am able to run it as a live system. This seems to work fine.

However, when I pick 'Start installer', I get a screen that looks like the squashed installation screen. It is impossible to read anything on it, so I cannot proceed the installation (since I do not know what I'm doing) (I promise that it is not just the picture)

Unreadable installation screen

The same problem occurs when I start the text installation. Does anyone have an idea what could be causing this and how I can fix this?

I have a Lenovo G580 that currently runs Windows 10.

Last edited by NeleR (2019-02-08 13:26:54)

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#2 2019-02-08 15:32:35

S7.L
Member
Registered: 2018-09-16
Posts: 338

Re: Installation screens not readable

I would try another usb stick with the live iso transfered to it and see if it happens again just to narrow down that it is not the usb causing issues. Also how are you transferring the iso image to usb, what method are you using to "burn" ?

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#3 2019-02-08 16:30:09

NeleR
Member
Registered: 2019-02-08
Posts: 7

Re: Installation screens not readable

Hello S7.L, thanks for you response!

I use Rufus 3.4.1420 (Portable) to create the bootable usb.

The settings:
- Partition: MBR
- Goal system: BIOS or UEFI
- File system: FAT32

When I click 'start' I get a message that Rufus needs to download 'Idlinux.sys' and 'Idlinux.bss' from the web. I allowed this.

Then I get the option between 'ISO-image-modus (recommended)' and 'DD-image-modus'. I picked the second one, because that's what the BunsenLabs installation page suggest.

I've tried to install the ISO on the USB again, but this gives the same result. I will try another USB later this evening.

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#4 2019-02-08 17:31:17

hhh
Meep!
Registered: 2015-09-17
Posts: 7,691
Website

Re: Installation screens not readable

Try not using Rufus, and just use cp in a terminal. Assuming your USB stick is identified as /dev/sdb1 (please check this!), cd to a directory with just the ISO in it (example: cd Downloads) and run the following...

sudo cp *.iso /dev/sdb;sync

Note, do not include a number, use /dev/sdb (adjust for your actual USB drive path).

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#5 2019-02-08 20:27:56

ohnonot
...again
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 3,742
Website

Re: Installation screens not readable

if that doesn't help, try to add "nomodeset" (no quotes) to the kernel boot command.
that is, before you even select the installer, press 'e' or [Tab], not sure which, and add that word, then press enter (or maybe F10).

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#6 2019-02-08 20:46:17

Bearded_Blunder
Dodging A Bullet
From: Seat: seat0; vc7
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 730

Re: Installation screens not readable

In the installer it's [tab] edit then [enter], in grub it's [e] edit then [f10] I'm pretty sure, could be wrong, not being the same is confusing.
Anyhow, it tells you on the screen which.. that I am confident of.

Make sure you add the parameter after rather than before the "---" that way it *should* get passed in the installed system also, does with the main Debian installer, not sure that works for the variant Bunsen uses, I seem to remember having to edit /etc/default/grub despite having passed "nolapic" to the Bunsen installer for a system that needed it.  I now install to that hardware using the netinstall as it saves a repeat at the grub screen & edit in the installed system.


Blessed is he who expecteth nothing, for he shall not be disappointed...
If there's an obscure or silly way to break it, but you don't know what.. Just ask me

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#7 2019-02-09 14:28:11

S7.L
Member
Registered: 2018-09-16
Posts: 338

Re: Installation screens not readable

if you are unsure on cli and terminal methods and need gui program give this one a try.

https://www.balena.io/etcher/

otherwise i follow the archwiki and use dd from within gnu/linux, you could do it too from within the bunsenlabs live session given the right parameters.

https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/US … tion_media

Last edited by S7.L (2019-02-09 14:28:38)

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#8 2019-02-10 15:56:06

NeleR
Member
Registered: 2019-02-08
Posts: 7

Re: Installation screens not readable

Hello all. Thanks for you replies!

I have tried the following.
- use another usb (@S7.L)
- use "sudo cp *.iso /dev/sdb;sync" to make the bootable usb (@hhh)
- use "dd bs=4M if=path/to/archlinux.iso of=/dev/sdx status=progress oflag=sync" to make the bootable usb (@S7.L)

But this did not make a difference. I can start the install but cannot see what I am doing.

When I hit e before going into the install, I get this

setparams 'Start installer'
    linux   /install/gtx/vmlinuz video=vesa:ywrap,mtrr vga=788 \quiet
    intrd   /install/gtx/initr.gz

I have tried adding "nomodeset" (@ohnonot), but to no avail

Last edited by NeleR (2019-02-10 17:46:31)

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#9 2019-02-10 17:47:22

NeleR
Member
Registered: 2019-02-08
Posts: 7

Re: Installation screens not readable

I have found a post that describes a similar problem https://www.reddit.com/r/debian/comment … ow_to_fix/

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#10 2019-02-10 22:00:26

ohnonot
...again
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 3,742
Website

Re: Installation screens not readable

NeleR wrote:

When I hit e before going into the install, I get this

setparams 'Start installer'
    linux   /install/gtx/vmlinuz video=vesa:ywrap,mtrr vga=788 \quiet
    intrd   /install/gtx/initr.gz

I have tried adding "nomodeset" (@ohnonot), but to no avail

this looks a little weird.
try

setparams 'Start installer'
    linux   /install/gtx/vmlinuz nomodeset
    intrd   /install/gtx/initr.gz

or

setparams 'Start installer'
    linux   /install/gtx/vmlinuz vga=788 nomodeset
    intrd   /install/gtx/initr.gz

or something like that.

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#11 2019-02-12 18:01:36

NeleR
Member
Registered: 2019-02-08
Posts: 7

Re: Installation screens not readable

ohnonot wrote:

try

setparams 'Start installer'
    linux   /install/gtx/vmlinuz nomodeset
    intrd   /install/gtx/initr.gz

or

setparams 'Start installer'
    linux   /install/gtx/vmlinuz vga=788 nomodeset
    intrd   /install/gtx/initr.gz

or something like that.

This did not work sad

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#12 2019-02-13 06:08:14

ohnonot
...again
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 3,742
Website

Re: Installation screens not readable

NeleR wrote:

This did not work sad

a reply like this makes me think: ok, op didn't try very hard, so i'm also not trying very hard...

always provide additional information.
always be precise in your troubleshooting steps.
if the guy comes to repair your washing machine, it might be ok to say "It doesn't work", but here you have to do at least (!) 50% of the work, otherwise you will never get to [SOLVED].

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#13 2019-02-13 07:31:05

NeleR
Member
Registered: 2019-02-08
Posts: 7

Re: Installation screens not readable

Ohnonot wrote:

a reply like this makes me think: ok, op didn't try very hard, so i'm also not trying very hard...

This is not very kind. I have been trying all weekend, reading through things that are entirely new to me (like kernell settings on boot). I have tried to Google this (but it is pretty hard to Google without error messages), but could only find one guy with the same problem (https://www.reddit.com/r/debian/comment … ow_to_fix/ - there is no solution provided in his post so I tried to contact him).

I appreciate that you try to help and I promise that I did try your advice (and a bunch of variations). It just gave me the same result again and again, a wonky installation screen. No feedback at all. I hope you understand that this frustrates me a lot. It would be very unuseful to try describe my problem again since, there is no evolution since I asked my first question. The only thing I can do is report that your suggestion did not help.

These are the things I tried
- re-install the USB
- use a different USB
- re-download iso file
- re-install using Linux commands instead of Rufus
- edit the installation script in different ways, including "nomodeset" and "fb=false"

I really do appreciate your help. So please share if you see any other options I can try.

Last edited by NeleR (2019-02-13 07:31:57)

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#14 2019-02-13 08:07:14

S7.L
Member
Registered: 2018-09-16
Posts: 338

Re: Installation screens not readable

^ does this happen on any other debian installers, maybe try say a standard debian iso if you are able to download that and have bandwidth to do so. I would say it has something to do with your graphics card, maybe have a look in the bios and see if anything is turned off when it should be turned on like say hybrid graphics?

Are you running any special graphics cards?

what is the output of below terminal command

lspci -v | grep VGA

here is a page for non-free iso downloads of available desktops environments in debian. It supplies non free proprietry software which you might need but im sure the bunsenlabs offers this at install time as well.

https://cdimage.debian.org/images/unoff … so-hybrid/

Last edited by S7.L (2019-02-13 08:15:00)

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#15 2019-02-13 10:00:25

ohnonot
...again
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 3,742
Website

Re: Installation screens not readable

actually every bootloader menu should have some sort of "failsafe", "recovery" or "fallback" option.
if that doesn't help either, just try more different things, different distros, different usb ports, diffrent computers... troubleshooting = narrow down what the cause might be.

and share your findings in full technical detail.
we can only react to what you share with us.

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#16 2019-02-14 20:14:31

THX1138
Member
Registered: 2019-01-14
Posts: 191

Re: Installation screens not readable

NeleR wrote:

I am able to run it as a live system. This seems to work fine.

However, when I pick 'Start installer', I get a screen that looks like the squashed installation screen.

If I am reading this right you are burning the iso to usb or dvd then starting the live
disk and choosing the installer from within the live desktop?
I know you said the text installer is the same
So boot from the usb/dvd as though you are going to reinstall it.
When the boot options appear, Instead of going to the live desktop
scroll down and go to install (4th option down)
what happens now after selecting install?

If I read you wrongly, tell me which two options you have tried and try the remaining option.
I cannot understand how the install process could be messing up both in text mode and from within the GUI
Since, unless I am very mistaken, they would be using very different parameters to
put the information on your screen

The best suggestion, without getting very lengthy and wordy about it, that I can think of,
Is to force the monitor to use the lowest refresh rate possible, and the lowest resolution
and then try. Try resetting your bios before you start

Last edited by THX1138 (2019-02-14 20:24:18)


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#17 2019-02-14 20:52:46

Bearded_Blunder
Dodging A Bullet
From: Seat: seat0; vc7
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 730

Re: Installation screens not readable

If you start the installer (text mode) & do ctrl alt + f4 can you read that screen? it'd be where any errors would show. Also starting it in expert mode shows the kernel messages as it starts, you might catch sight of an error there to give you something to work with.


Blessed is he who expecteth nothing, for he shall not be disappointed...
If there's an obscure or silly way to break it, but you don't know what.. Just ask me

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#18 2019-02-14 20:53:07

damo
....moderator....
Registered: 2015-08-20
Posts: 4,908

Re: Installation screens not readable

^^ The BL installer is run from the boot screen - there is no option available from the live desktop.

Last edited by damo (2019-02-14 20:53:21)


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#19 2019-02-16 15:37:12

NeleR
Member
Registered: 2019-02-08
Posts: 7

Re: Installation screens not readable

Thank you all for your replies!

----

S7.L wrote:

what is the output of below terminal command `lspci -v | grep VGA`

I ran this, running BunsenLabs in Live Mode from usb:

00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 3rd Gen Core processor Graphics Controller (rev 09) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: NVIDIA Corporation GF108M [GeForce GT 635M] (rev a1) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])

I do not know what to make out of that. I also do not know how to check in the bios if anything is turned off when it should be turned on.

----

ohnonot wrote:

actually every bootloader menu should have some sort of "failsafe", "recovery" or "fallback" option.

There is a Rescue Mode (I am not sure if that is what you mean?) but that gives the same unreadable result.

I will try another Debian distribution somewhere this week, when I have a bit more time.

----

THX1138 wrote:

If I am reading this right you are burning the iso to usb or dvd then starting the live disk and choosing the installer from within the live desktop?

No. As damo pointed out, you cannot start the installer from the live desktop, only from the boot screen. The problem with the squashed screen only starts when I start the installer. I tried the following options: Graphical mode, text mode, expert graphical mode, expert text mode, automatic graphical mode, automatic text mode, rescue graphical mode and rescue text mode; they all gave the unreadable screen as result. Memtest86+ did not seem appropriate so I did not try that.

THX1138 wrote:

The best suggestion, without getting very lengthy and wordy about it, that I can think of,
Is to force the monitor to use the lowest refresh rate possible, and the lowest resolution
and then try. Try resetting your bios before you start

Could you give me a bit more input on how to do this? It's all very new to me.

----

Bearded_Blunder wrote:

If you start the installer (text mode) & do ctrl alt + f4 can you read that screen? it'd be where any errors would show. Also starting it in expert mode shows the kernel messages as it starts, you might catch sight of an error there to give you something to work with.

No, CTRL+ALT+F4 does not help. Same for expert mode.

----

Thinks I will try once I have a little more time:
- Another Debian distribution
- Another Linux distribution

Last edited by NeleR (2019-02-16 15:38:06)

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#20 2019-02-17 06:24:22

johnraff
nullglob
From: Nagoya, Japan
Registered: 2015-09-09
Posts: 5,308
Website

Re: Installation screens not readable

NeleR wrote:
Bearded_Blunder wrote:

If you start the installer (text mode) & do ctrl alt + f4 can you read that screen? it'd be where any errors would show.

No, CTRL+ALT+F4 does not help.

Once the installer has started - choose "Text Based Install" not "Install" - then CTRL+ALT+F4 should bring you to a console, with some messages. What actually happens?


John
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