OPS235 Lab 1 19

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Fedora 19 Installation (on Main Host - f19host)


  • In this lab, you are going to install the Fedora (GNU/Linux Distribution) to your removable hard disk from your burned DVD.
  • Although this will be a simple install, this Fedora Operating System will be a platform for other Virtual Machine Fedora installations (in future labs). Therefore, it is very important that you take the time to carefully read and perform ALL steps, and take time to check your work.
  • After performing the Fedora19 DVD installation, you will collect baseline information about your Fedora GNU/Linux system, and perform some post installation configuration to prepare your system for the remainder of the labs.


  1. Perform a GNU/Linux installation using the Fedora 19 distribution
  2. Investigate information during and after the Fedora 19 installation
  3. Perform an update after a recent installation

Required Materials (Bring to All Labs)

  • Fedora 19 LIVE CD (not used in lab1)
  • Fedora 19 x86_64 Installation DVD
  • SATA Hard Disk (in removable disk tray)
  • USB Memory Stick
  • Lab Logbook


  • None (First Lab)

Linux Command Online Reference

Each Link below displays online manpages for each command (via http://linuxmanpages.com):


Normally you would read man pages on the machine you're working on using the man command, for example man rpm will show you the manual page for the rpm command.

Resources on the web

Additional links to tutorials and HOWTOs:

Performing Lab 1

Investigation 1: How to Perform a Fedora DVD Install on Your Removable Hard Drive

Part 1: Simple Things

  1. Insert your removable SATA hard disk into the drive tray.
  2. Set your computer's drive selector switch to external (a.k.a position #4).
  3. Power up the computer and insert the Fedora 19 Full Installation DVD into the CD/DVD drive. Note: do NOT use the Live CD - that will be used later in lab2...
  4. Wait until the Fedora DVD boots (could take a few moments).
Booting from DVD/CD and External Drives in Seneca's Computer labs
Please following the steps below to properly boot from your CD/DVD:
  • Restart the computer, and press the function key F10 to specify the device to boot (eg. DVD drive).
  • If the user is prompted for a password, simply press ENTER (without typing any password) at the password prompt.
  • Choose the DVD drive from the list of devices avalable for boot.
  • You will need to perform this technique to ensure that Fedora boots from the hard drive (in future labs).
  • If you have tried this technique, and the Fedora Installation DVD does not boot, you may have to burn a new Fedora Installation DVD.

Note: Follow the same procedure when booting to your external hard disk in future lab sessions at Seneca's labs.
  1. Note the time at the beginning of your installation.
  2. When the Fedora19 Installation DVD boots, it will prompt the user for the default language. Select the default language (English) in the next install screen, and click Continue.
  3. You will be brought to an installation summary screen.
  4. Verify that the Keyboard is set to English (English (US)).
  5. Verify that "Gnome Desktop" is the default software selection.
  6. Click on the Date & Time icon. Select for the city of Toronto (you can type, select, or click on the graphical region on the map). When finished, click on the Done button located in the top right-hand corner. This will return you to the installation summary screen.

Part 2: Partitioning

Manual vs Automatic Partitioning
By default, the Fedora19 installation DVD will want to automatically select the partitions that will be created during the installation process. It is important to NOT select the default partitioning process, since you will be required to make customized partitions such as /var/lib/libvirt/images and also assign customized sizes for the partitions. Please carefully follow the instructions below for correct setup. Not carefully following the instructions below can result in having to redo the entire installation process!
  1. In the installation summary screen, click the Installation Destination icon (under the Storage section).
  2. Verify that your hard disk is the default destination for install (i.e. check mark underneath hard disk icon). Click the Done button.
  3. An Installation Options dialog box should appear. Select "I want to review/modify my disk partitions before continuing" and make certain that the Partition Scheme is set to LVM. Click the Continue button.
  4. A Manual Partitioning screen should appear. This is the screen where you can customize your partitioning information.
  5. Ignore the "New Fedora 19 Installation" section. Instead, Click the "Fedora Linux 19 for X86_64" to expand the section. Delete each partition in that section by clicking on each partition (eg. /, /home. swap), and click the minus button "-" on the bottom left-hand-side to delete and verify that you want to delete those partitions.
  6. When all the partitions are removed, click on the plus sign on the bottom left-hand-side to create your partitions. On your hard drive you will need to create at least the following partitions. These may be primary partitions or logical drives. If you have more space than 160GB available - you can add the extra space in equal parts to /home and /var/lib/libvirt/images
    • 50GB for / (i.e. "root")
    • 500 MB for /boot
    • 40GB for /home
    • 8GB for swap (Note: "swap" must be selected from the drop down menu)
    • 100GB for /var/lib/libvirt/images
    Careful with /var/lib/libvirt/images pathname spelling and size
    You must take time to correctly spell the pathname for the /var/lib/libvirt/images directory. This pathanme is used later to store the virtual machine images from lab2 installs. If you do not take time to properly spell this directory name, you will have to make corrections before proceeding to lab2!

  7. Record briefly in your lab logbook what partitions you created of what size and what device names were assigned to them (/dev/sda1, etc.).

Part 3: Completing Installation

  1. Click the Done button, and click Accept Changes in the Summary of Changes dialog box to return to the installation summary screen.
  2. Click Begin Installation to proceed with the install. During the installation process, you will need to create a root password and at least one regular user account.
Creating Effective and Easy-To-Remember Passwords
Pick a password that is hard to guess to protect your system. (Recommendation: use the first letter and all the punctuation from a favorite phrase or song verse. For example, "To be or not to be, that is the question!" could become the password "Tbontb,titq!"). A password strength indicator is provided to recommend if the password is weak or strong. Obviously, a stronger password is better.
  1. When the installation process is complete, a screen will confirm completion, and ask the user to remove the DVD, and reboot the computer. Write in your lab log-book the time it took to perform this DVD Fedora install.
  2. Remove the Fedora Installation DVD, and click Reboot.
  3. Finish the post-installation customization, wait for the login screen to appear, and then login to your computer account and your created (i.e. your name).

  4. Important.png
    By default, your account will go into screen-saver mode after a few minutes of inactivity. Usually, you will need to enter your user password to return to your desktop. The Gnome 3 desktop environment requires that you click and drag your mouse pointer upwards in order to access and enter your password.
  5. Proceed to Investigation 2

Answer the Investigation 1 observations / questions in your lab log book.

Investigation 2: Obtaining Operating System Information

For the rest of the tasks in this lab, you must login to your installed Fedora system using your Learn account, open a terminal and execute the following listed Linux commands to obtain information for your lab-logbook (lab1). If you get a Permission Denied message when trying to execute a command, then switch to the superuser account by running the command su - and type in your password for "root" (since you are the main administrator for your Fedora system). Once the intended command is executed, type "exit" to exit from the superuser account and return to your regular Learn account.

Using Superuser Privilege
Throughout this course, you may need to execute commands using the privileges of the the administrative user (username "root", also called the "superuser"). To switch from your account to the root account, type the command: su

After switching user notice and make note of the change in your shell prompt. Also note the difference in output for the whoami and pwd commands.

Whenever this is required, make a note of it, and determine why superuser privilege is required.

When you are finished using the root account type exit to return to your previous account. Avoid using the superuser account unless absolutely necessary, because the superuser account has unlimited privilege and a typo can destroy your system.

In some documentation, you may see the command su - used in place of su. The dash argument causes su to go through the steps that would normally be performed when the root user logs in, including (1) running the startup scripts (such as/etc/profile and /root/.bash_profile and (2) changing to the root user's home directory (/root).

Note that the root user's home directory (/root) is not the same as the root directory of the system (/). It is also in a different directory than the rest of the home directories, which are typically in /home -- the reason for this is that /home is sometimes on a network filesystem shared by another server (as is the case on Matrix), and it's important that the system administrator be able to log in to the system even if the network is not operating normally.

Issue and record the commands used and the output generated in each of the following steps:

  1. Open a terminal by clicking the Activities menu, and typing in the search area: gnome-terminal. A terminal program icon should appear: click on the icon to open a shell terminal.
  2. Issue the following command: su -
  3. Using the rpm command: you can also use the following commands to list all the installed packages, and the total number of packages installed:
rpm -q -a
rpm -q -a | wc -l
rpm -qa | wc -l
  1. The -q option means query, and the -a option means all (in other words, query all installed software packages).
  2. Enter the following command and record the number:
rpm -qal | wc -l
What is the difference between the commands: rpm -qa and rpm -qal? (Refer to the online man pages for the rpm command for an answer).
  1. Some of the files on your system were installed with the software packages, and some were created by system activity (for example, by creating your Learn account and by logging in). If you know the package name (from the install.log), you can list all the files that were installed from the package by using the following command:
rpm -q -l package_name
(where package_name represents the name of the application or package)
  1. This combines the -q (query) option with the -l (list filenames) option
  2. You can pipe the outupt through wc -l to count the number of lines:
rpm -ql package_name| wc -l
  1. To obtain specific information regarding a specific program, you can combine the -q (query) option with the -i (info) option. Issue the following command to obtain detailed information regarding the gnome-terminal application:
rpm -qi gnome-terminal
  1. To find out the name that you have assigned to your Linux system, enter the command: hostname
  2. Issue the following command: hostname f19host
  3. Re-issue the hostname command. What happened?
  4. To find out the kernel version of your GNU/Linux workstation and the date it was created, enter the command: uname -rv
  5. To find out all the system processes running on your GNU/Linux workstation, enter the command: ps -ef
  6. To capture the list of all the system processes to a file called ps.lst, enter the command: ps -ef > ps.lst
Pathname for USB Stick
The procedure has changed to refer to the usb device for distributions prior to Fedora17 (eg. /media/usb-device-name). For Fedora17, the new device pathname is:
/run/media/userloginid/usb-device-name .

Note: You can press the tab key to guess what the userloginname/usb-device-name is...
  1. Copy the file ps.lst from your /root directory to a USB memory key (or use the scp command to backup the ps.lst file to your matrix account).
Backup up to your USB Key
When your USB key is inserted into your computer, the device is recognised and assigned a name. You can view your USB drive by issuing the command ls /run/media/yourusername and view the mounted devices. Then you can issue a Linux command as "super-user" to copy the files to your USB device.
  1. View the section below to learn about and perform an update on your fresh Fedora install (you may have to find spare time to perform this install if you are running short on lab time). Do not proceed to Investigation 3 without performing an update.
Consider Remaining Lab Time Prior to Performing Upgrade
Carefully check the remaining time in your lab prior to performing an upgrade on the operating system. It can take 30 - 90 minutes to perform an upgrade...
  1. Since your installation DVD is an image (picture frozen in time), your Fedora 19 distribution may be lacking important fixes and security enhancements. We will now perform an update. First, you must start the Firefox web browser, turn off popup window blocking (select Edit>Preferences, then select the Content tab and un-check the box to Block Popups), then login to SeneNET.
  2. Switch to your bash shell terminal, and issue the command: yum update

Answer the Investigation 2 observations / questions in your lab log book.

Investigation 3: What is the network configuration?

Rusty Issuing Linux commands since ULI101?
To be an effective Linux administrator, you need to become comfortable on issuing Linux commands in a shell, and use resources to quickly learn how to properly formulate Linux commands...

You can run the following online tutorials to practice (refresh) issuing Linux commands. These tutorials were designed for another course called "OPS435", but you can still use them for practice. Simply open a shell, SSH into the Matrix server (eg. ssh yourusername@matrix.senecac.on.ca) and run the following 4 tutorials (you can copy and paste these separate pathnames and run like a program):


You can also refer to the section above called Linux Command Online Reference to see how use use the following Linux commands to obtain the required information.
  1. To check the network configuration settings obtained from the DHCP server, run the following commands, describing the output in your log book:
    • ifconfig
    • route
    • nslookup (at the > prompt, enter the word "server" (do not type the quotes) and record the output. Type exit to leave nslookup).

  2. Find the following information in the output of the above commands:
    • MAC address (physical or hardware address) of the ethernet network interface
    • Subnet mask
    • The IP address (logical address) assigned by the DHCP server
    • The default route (gateway)
    • The DNS nameserver

Answer the Investigation 3 observations / questions in your lab log book.

Investigation 4: SELinux

SELinux stands for Security-Enhanced Linux. It is a component that helps to better secure the system to protect against intrusion (hackers). Usually, SELinux is enabled upon the default install of Fedora. SELinux can be a good thing, if you take care of it and are aware that it is enabled or disabled. It is recommended that you disable SELinux by default for this course, since you will be communicating with other virtual machines and can cause machines NOT to communicate.
  1. Disabling SELinux on Fedora is actually quite simple, just edit the file /etc/selinux/config and change the following line to look like this:
    • SELINUX=disabled

Completing the Lab

Check off the following items before asking your instructor to check your lab:

  • Task 1 - Install GNU/Linux Workstation using Fedora
  • Task 2 - Collect system information after installation.
  • Task 3 - Fedora Updated
  • Task 4 - Collect network information

Arrange evidence for each of these items on your screen, then ask your instructor to review them and sign off on the lab's completion:

  • Can login with your "learn" account name
  • Has the package count
  • Has correct size partitions for:
  • root / (20GB), /home (30GB), swap (8GB)
  • /var/lib/libvirt/images (100GB)
  • Hint: Can issue lsblk (listblock command)
  • Has the correct IP address and MAC address
  • Find out the default route (gateway)
  • IP of the DNS name server
  • Name and contact information on your disk pack
  • Lag Logbook (lab1) notes filled-in.

Preparing for Quizzes

  1. How many packages were installed?
  2. How many files (correct to the nearest hundred) were installed?
  3. How many users were created automatically on your system (do not count your learn account)?
  4. What is your learn account's UID and GID?
  5. What is your learn account's home directory?
  6. What is the home directory for the user "root"?
  7. How do you determine the host name of your GNU/Linux workstation?
  8. What command can display the NIC's MAC address?