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Installing Fedora 18 Nightly Build

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I burnt it to a USB drive with the dd command and booted from it. I was greeted with a screen which asked me to choose to “Try Fedora” or “Install to Hard Drive”. I choose “Installed to Hard Drive” as I wanted to test the real distro, not the Live CD.

I also needed to test some other things which I cannot test in Virtualbox, because there is some problem in connecting to internet there, so I had to install it to my hard drive (I wish I had not though).

The following warning appears mentioning that it is buggy and unstable. A funny message, but yet, a nice touch and does its job. I accepted it anyways.

The next screen was “Language Selection”. Nothing spectacular about it. Same old screen listing languages to choose from. Also the “pre-release” tag is written in red and bold letters which is enough to warn and a good little detail. I just choose “English” and clicked “Continue”.

Then it offered me to configure the internet. As I didn’t have an internet connection, I just clicked “Continue”.

Then the “Installation Summary” page pops in. Where you can configure the “Date & time”, “Keyboard”, “Language” and the installation location. The installer makes it simpler for you and doesn’t want to nag you with the configuration of “Date & Time” and “Keyboard”, still provides you options to configure them, and the options cannot go unnoticed since they are quite prominent.

When I clicked “Installation Destination”, it took me to the “Disk Selection” screen. It lists all the disks attached to the system. It shows my hard disk and the USB drive here. But since I booted from my USB drive, I don’t expect it to be shown. But hey, this occurs in Ubuntu’s Ubiquity Installer too!

After I choose my hard disk and clicked “Continue”, a dialog offered me to automatically configure the installation. Which seems nice for new users, as they won’t be familiar with mount points and stuff. But the current behavior is that your whole hard disk will be formatted. Hope they change it soon. Nah. I choose to customize my partitioning scheme and clicked “Continue”.

The “Manual Partitioning” screen then appears. I think it is quite confusing. I could not figure out anything from it and I doubt a new user will. It had an option to automatically create the mount points, which didn’t work. I’m curious how it will work though, once the code is complete. Anyways, I think it is far from being called user friendly. And by the way it did not detect my partitions, though after several attempts, it somehow managed to detect my partitions.

Anyhow I managed to assign a partition and mount point. Then I clicked “Begin Installation” and the installtion continued.

Hmm… It halted without any warning or message or anything. May be because my battery was low? But I have no idea. I connected my charger and it seemed to continue. Finally it finished without any problems. Yay!

I didn’t test everything as I was in a hurry. And everything was not smooth. I came across this screen in the installer quite a few times.

I think I somehow started multiple instances of the installer that caused this error. And again, two of my partitions were completely formatted automatically, and I (!)lost all my data (thank god I had backups). Fedora 18 (Spherical Cow) is still not released and this is a pre-release version. I hope the final Fedora 18 will fix all these annoying bugs though.

What do you think about the new installer? Is it user friendly?

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  • Denis

    I tried to give Fedora a shot two weeks ago. Thats what happened to me as well…it formatted all my hdd. and unfortunately i didnt have a backup. Installation didnt even warn me that it will format =( Somehow i managed to use foremost and photorec to restore some files…but most of my precious data was lost. Its a shame. From other side its a fresh start…i had to much data, to tell you the truth that i never used. And i bet it happens to a lot of people. They have to do something about it. I have a conspiracy theory =) I think that fedora and ubuntu dont work along because, canonical and redhat are competing companies. What do you think?

    • alex285

      Fedora’s 18 installer is buggy, but I also accidentally deleted my HDD from UI, Disks (now noob am I ?)! I also had issues to make a dual boot with Fedora and Ubuntu, with LVM and SSD. But there isn’t a conspiracy theory, it is just hard and you need to know lots of partitioning stuffs.. Boring things :)

      • Denis

        I wouldnt call them boring…i know there are people that consider this kind of stuff pretty interesting =) I was trying to say that it is strange that its easier to dual boot windows alongside ubuntu then ubuntu and fedora…its strange, since they both are linux os. Logically they should be no issues whatsoever in installing them alongside.

    • Marcos V.F.

      The two companies do not work together because Fedora and Ubuntu have different focuses.

      Ubuntu focuses on the end user, while Fedora is focused on evolution of free software (and that’s why their applications are always as current as possible).

      Fedora is a great distro after 2-3 months of release, the bugs are always fixed. If RedHat invest in end-user (appearance, software center, support more than 6 months, etc.), would have a great distro for the end user and to evolve the state of free software.

      But that is unlikely to happen.

      Note: Fedora is my main distro.

    • jon_downfromthetrees

      Always read the release notes and the list of common bugs Fedora maintains for each release. They’re very good and serve as examples for other distributions. The disk-formatting problem with Anaconda and a workaround is on the buglist.

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  • arwing

    I don’t know WHYYYYYYYYYYY redhat developers want to reinvent the wheel. First GNOMEEE that sucks and now this confusing installer. Look this phrase up: “The old installer’s interface could destroy data on your disk(s) and you couldn’t go back to change it”. HAHAHAHAHA good joke!!!!