3.3. Text-Based Installation with YaST

In addition to installing with the assistance of a graphical interface, SUSE LINUX can also be installed with the help of the text version of YaST (console mode). All YaST modules are also available in this text mode. The text mode is especially useful if you do not need a graphical interface (e.g., for server systems) or if the graphics card is not supported by the X Window System. The visually impaired can also benefit from this text mode.

First, set the boot sequence in the BIOS to enable booting from the CD-ROM drive. Insert the DVD or CD 1 in the drive and reboot the machine. The start screen is displayed after a few seconds.

Use and to select Manual Installation within ten seconds to prevent YaST from starting automatically. If your hardware requires special parameters, which is not usually the case, enter these in Boot Options. The parameter textmode=1 can be used to force YaST to run in text mode.

Use F2 (Video Mode) to set the screen resolution for the installation. If you expect your graphics card to cause problems during the installation, select Text Mode. Then press Enter. A box appears with the progress display Loading Linux kernel. The kernel boots and linuxrc starts. Proceed with the installation using the menus of linuxrc.

Other boot problems can usually be circumvented with kernel parameters. If DMA causes difficulties, use the start option Installation — Safe Settings. If your CD-ROM drive (ATAPI) crashes when booting the system, refer to Section 3.7. “ATAPI CD-ROM Hangs while Reading”. The following kernel parameters may be used if you experience problems with ACPI (advanced configuration and power interface).


This parameter disables the complete ACPI subsystem on your computer. This may be useful if your computer cannot handle ACPI at all or if you think ACPI in your computer causes trouble.


Switch off ACPI for everything but those parts that are necessary to boot.


Always enables ACPI, even if your computer has an old BIOS dated before the year 2000. This parameter also enables ACPI if it is set in addition to acpi=off.


Prevents ACPI from doing the PCI IRQ routing.

Also refer to the SDB article http://portal.suse.com/sdb/en/2002/10/81_acpi.html.

If unexplainable errors occur when the kernel is loaded or during the installation, select Memory Test in the boot menu to check the memory. Linux requires the hardware to meet high standards, which means the memory and its timing must be set correctly. More information is available at http://portal.suse.com/sdb/en/2001/05/thallma_memtest86.html. If possible, run the memory test overnight.