[mythtv-users] Installing Mythbuntu (backend) on a HP ProLiant MicroServer - N40L

Mike Perkins mikep at randomtraveller.org.uk
Sat Sep 22 11:07:37 UTC 2012

On 22/09/12 11:36, Leigh Anthony wrote:
> On 21/09/2012, at 9:12 PM, Mike Perkins wrote:
>> On 21/09/12 11:15, Michael Watson wrote:
>>> On 21/09/2012 7:28 PM, Damian wrote:
>>>> Hello all,
>>>> I have never installed the 'server edition' of anything before, let
>>>> alone owed a headless machine of any kind.
>>>> I have a HP ProLiant MicroServer - N40L on it's way to me and I want to
>>>> put Ubuntu on there and the MythTV backend. It's also effectively going
>>>> to be the NAS for my house and the music server (using Logitec Media
>>>> Server .. Squeezebox Server).
>>>> How do you install an OS on a headless system? I know about and use
>>>> VNC, but don't you need an OS first before you can install and use
>>>> VNC?
>>>> Do I need to install the server edition of Ubuntu, or can I install
>>>> the standard version? Does the server version of Ubuntu have a GUI or
>>>> is it all text based? If it's all text based, can I install the
>>>> Mythbuntu backend? I'm sure others have done this, so there must be a
>>>> way.
>>>> Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on my next step into geekdom
>>>> :-)
>>> Plug a keyboard / monitor in to install initial OS. With keyboard /
>>> monitor still attached, log in, setup your static IP Address (all servers
>>> should have a static IP address).  After you have got your static ip
>>> address working, check that your internet is still working  and install
>>> openssh and mythtv-backend using (on ubuntu).
>>> sudo apt-get update; sudo apt-get dist-upgrade sudo apt-get install
>>> mythtv-backend-master openssh-server sudo reboot
>>> This will install MythTV backend server, and all its required
>>> dependents, including mysql server.
>> Learned the hard way: *Before* you put it in the cupboard, test it to make
>> sure that (i) it will run without a keyboard (Usually a BIOS option: Halt
>> on all except keyboard) and (ii) it will run without a monitor attached!
>> I found that Intel video chipsets are particularly difficult in the second
>> respect. What I have ended up doing is forcing the 'Vesa' driver in
>> xorg.conf which gets round that problem. When it's in the cupboard, you
>> won't want to connect directly to it with a screen and keyboard, will you?
>> If you have to, for diagnostic reasons, the Vesa driver is perfecly
>> adequate for use in any case.
> You could also put in a serial port, though getting a mobile device with a
> serial port these days is tricky.
> Make sure you can attach a screen easily if you need to at a later date.  My
> server is in the garage and taking a screen out there is a bit of a pain!
> Most things (system admin) can be done from the command line, but if you have
> an X11 (usually Linux or Mac but Windows can have software added to do it)
> host with a screen you can run ssh.
> "ssh user at host" will give you a commandline, but "ssh -X user at headlessHost"
> will allow you to run graphical applications on the remote headless host but
> with a local display, which is far better than vnc.
> Just as a note, "putty" on windows will not give you graphical application
> support - you need something like cygwin (free) or Reflection/X (not free).
(Fixed top quoting)

The *entire* point of my note is that *none* of what you have suggested will 
work if the box won't boot, and it won't boot under certain conditions as I have 
described above.

My server boxes are all accessed via "ssh -Y user at headlesshost". First of all 
the box has to have booted up properly in the first place - without keyboard and 


Mike Perkins

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