Tumbleweed install for June 2017

I’m no longer doing monthly installs of Tumbleweed.  But I do installs when there is a reason.

In this case it was another computer.  And what use is a computer without some form of linux?

My wife purchased a new laptop for use with Windows 10.  So I got the previous laptop as a hand-me-down.  I already have a laptop with Windows 7, and also dual-booting to openSUSE.  So I did not need another Windows 7 system.  So this became my linux laptop.

Around two months ago, another computer died.  That was an older desktop — the one with an nVidia graphics card.  That older desktop is now in computer heaven (otherwise known as the electronics recycling center).  With the arrival of this hand-me-down, I’m now back to my former number of computers.  But this one has Intel graphics, so I no longer have anything with nVidia graphics.

Disk preparation

I wanted to use an encrypted LVM for this install. And I find it more convenient to prepare the disk ahead of time.

I booted the Tumbleweed live KDE that I had downloaded in March.  And, with that running, started Yast and ran the Yast partitioner.

In the Yast partitioner, I first deleted the three existing partition.  They were a Dell OEM partition, a Windows recovery partition and the main Windows partition.  That left me with a clean disk.

Right clicking on the line for “/dev/sda”, I then added partitions as desired.  I first added three partitions at 500M each.  I set those to be formatted with “ext2”.  Those were intended for use as “/boot”.

Next, I added an extended partition, to use all remaining disk space.  This is an older computer with MBR partitioning, so an extended partition is needed if there are to be any logical partitions.

And, finally, I added a 300G partition, which I set to be encrypted.  I provided the encryption key as prompted.  And then I clicked “Finish” or “Next” as needed to complete the partitioning.

My next step was to convert that 300G partition into an LVM.  So I again started Yast partitioner.  It showed me the new partitioning, which looked good.  And it did show “/dev/sda5” as encrypted.  I was not prompted for the encryption key, because this partition was still accessible from when I created it.  If I had first rebooted, then the encryption key would have been requested.

Next, I clicked “Volume Management”.  On the Volume management screen, I used the “Add” button to add a volume group.  I was prompted for a name.  After giving that a name, I added the 300G partition to that volume group.

I then added several logical volumes.  I finished up with volumes “root1”, “root2” and “root3” each at 40G, volume “swap” at 12G, and volume “home” with the rest of the available space in that volume group.

You can perhaps guess my plans.  I wanted to be able to install up to three linux systems in that encrypted LVM, with a separate “boot” partition for each.  The “home” logical volume is to be shared.  For the system using the “root1” volume, the “home” volume will be mounted at “/home”.  For the other two systems, I expect to mount the home volume at “/xhome”, and access it from the home directory via symbolic links.


I downloaded the DVD iso for Tumbleweed snapshot 20160602.  I used “aria2c” for that download.  And I used “wget” to download the sha256 checksum file for that iso.  After both downloads had completed, I checked the “gpg” signature on the checksum file (it was good), and I then verified the checksum, using the “sha256sum” command.

I next used “dd_rescue” to copy the “.iso” file to an 8G USB flash drive.  And now I was ready for the install.


This was a very smooth install.  So there isn’t actually much to say.

I inserted the install USB, and powered up the computer.  Then I startaed pounding the F12 key.  That brings up the BIOS boot menu.  I say “pounding the F12 key”, because if I don’t time it right, then it goes straight to booting an installed system instead of giving me the boot menu.

On that menu, I selected booting from a USB drive.

And, shortly after that, I could see the installer starting up.  I soon had the welcome screen, where I agreed to the software license.

Next, I was prompted for the encryption key for “/dev/sda5” (the encrypted LVM).  I provided that.

The next screen gave a partitioning proposal.  And, of course, it was not what I wanted.  The proposal wanted a new partition in unassigned space, instead of using the encrypted LVM.  So I clicked “Create partitioning”, and on the next screen, I clicked “custom partitioning”.

That gave me a screen listing just the existing partitions and logical volumes.

I assigned the “root1” logical volume to me formatted as “ext4” and mounted at “/”.  The swap volume had already been selected to be used for swap.  And I selected the “home” volume to be mounted at “/home” (but not formatted).  I also selected “/dev/sda1” to be formatted (with “ext2” and mounted at “/boot”.

I clicked “Finish” or “Next” or “Accept”, to go with that partitioning that I had chosen.

At some time, there was a screen for timezone.  I’m not sure if that was before or after the partitioning.  I chose the Chicago timezone, with the hardware clock set to UTC.

I provided a user name and password as prompted.  I gave the user login as “support”, as this would be my administrative account.  I could add my main user account after installing.

That got me to the install summary screen.  There, I changed so that the “ssh” server would run and the firewall would be open for it.  I made minor changes to the boot setup (mainly, I increased the time to 15 seconds for showing the menu).  And then I went to software selection

The software selection has changed since my previous Tumbleweed install (in March).  This seems to be due to the reorganizing of the patterns used.

Previously, there had been a selection for “Gnome base” and another for “Gnome Desktop”.  Similarly there were two selections for XFCE and for KDE.  With the new software selection screen, there is only the one pattern for Gnome, and only one for XFCE.  Curiously, there are still two for KDE.  Some of the other patterns, such as those for development, appear to have been broken down to a more finely grained selection.

Overall, I like the new software selection screen.

After completing the software selection, I told it to go ahead with install.  And, when that was done, it booted into the new system.  Of course, using an encrypted LVM, I was prompted for the encryption key during that boot.  But, otherwise, everything went smoothly.

Finishing up

After that first reboot, I use Yast to add more software.  And I added the “packman” repo.  The system now seems to be running well.

I have since added an install of openSUSE 42.3 Beta.  That uses “/dev/sda2” for “/boot”, and uses the “root2” volume for its root file system.  It uses the same swap volume for swap, and it mounts the home volume at “/xhome”.



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About Neil Rickert

Mathematician and computer scientist who dabbles in cognitive science.

2 responses to “Tumbleweed install for June 2017”

  1. Mich says :

    Hi, was wondering if you have ever tried installing openSUSE on a new laptop with Secure Boot, UEFI. I’ve messed up pretty badly during my previous install a year back.

    Getting a new laptop for my family and looking for articles and advises on a dual boot installation. Appreciate any info if available.

    Anyway, have post a thread requesting for help at openSUSE forum with fingers crossed.


    • Neil Rickert says :

      I’ve installed on new computers with UEFI, but not a new laptop. As far as I know, there should not be a problem with most laptops. However there are a few brands that have poor UEFI implementations.

      If you happen to have 32-bit UEFI (typical with an Intel Atom processor), then you are going to have problems. Otherwise, it will probably work out well.

      OpenSUSE should be fine with secure-boot.

      With most UEFI computers, you insert the install media, and reboot. Then hit F12 while the computer is booting (I hit multiple times to be sure). The BIOS should give you a boot menu. Apparently, it is F9 instead of F12 for HP computers.


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