Debian is one of the most popular and oldest Linux distributions, yet it has a reputation for being more technical in nature. In actuality, Debian is simple to install if you carefully follow the installation instructions. Here’s how to install it on your computer.
What Is Debian?
Ian Murdock established Debian in 1993 as a combination of his name and that of his then-girlfriend, later wife, Deborah. Murdock wished for a Linux distribution as open and dedicated to free software as the GNU project. Although the leadership has changed since then, Debian remains dedicated to providing “a global operating system.”
Debian is the foundation for other major Linux distributions, particularly Ubuntu, and is known for its dedication to reliability and compatibility for different CPU architectures other than Intel.
Related: The Best Debian-Based Linux Distributions
What Do You Need to Run Debian?
The system requirements for Debian are straightforward. All you need is a compatible hardware architecture, and practically all modern CPUs are supported. The quantity of RAM and hard drive space required will be determined by the kind of system you install.
The Debian team recommends at least 780MB of RAM for a minimum installation and 920MB for a full installation. A complete desktop system will need at least 1GB of RAM, with 2GB suggested, as well as 10GB of storage space.
The first step in installing Debian is to get the appropriate installation image for your computer. Clicking the download link will, by default, download a “netinstall” image for the Intel x86-64 architecture. This implies that it is a basic image that will boot the installer and then download the remainder of the system from a repository when needed.
There are links to various installation pictures if you are using a different architecture or want a more full image. Following that, you must extract the image to the media that will be used to install Debian on your PC.
Step 2: Installing Debian
The boot menu will appear when you boot the installation disk. You may choose between graphical installation, text-based installation, advanced settings, a dark contrast installation menu, assistance, and voice synthesis installation.
The language is the initial installation option. You should choose your mother tongue. Then, choose your location. First, choose the nation in which you are situated. Then, for your keyboard, pick the keyboard layout.
The installation image will do a hardware scan and install numerous components.
Choose a hostname, or the name the computer will be known as on the network. “debian” will be the default. Next, choose a domain. For a local machine, just make anything up, such as “.local.”
After that, the installation will prompt you to generate a root password. This password is critical since it is how you execute administrative operations.
If you ignore this step, the initial username you pick will be an administrator user, and you will use the sudo command at the command line with your password. This is preferable than a root password since you only need to remember one of them.
For the first user, you’ll be asked to provide their entire name. The next page will allow you to provide a short name that you will use to log in to the system. You’ll have to input it twice, just like the root password, so they match.
Next, choose your time zone. The possibilities will differ based on the machine’s geographical location, which you specified in the previous stages. Choose the best option for you.
The partitions are configured on the following screen. Because we’ll be using the full drive, we’ll adopt the automated partition scheme suggested by the installer with the “Guided – use entire disk” option.
Accept the partition scheme with the main (root) partition and a swap partition on the following screen. The installer will ask you to confirm it since doing so would delete any existing data on the drive, but because there is none on this image, we’ll proceed.
The installer will now install the bare minimal system. Following that, it will request any extra media. When prompted, choose “No.”
We then choose a mirror. Choose the nearest place to you once again. The usual US mirror is us.debian.org, however there is a mirror close to us called “debian.osuosl.org.”
Following that, the system will prompt you to choose a proxy server. You may skip this step since you are not required to utilize one.
The package manager will now be configured by the installer. You may choose to have your use counted in the “popularity contest.” If you choose, you may skip this.
You may now choose the kind of system you wish to install. The checked option is a desktop system with GNOME and typical system tools. You can use this for a desktop, but if you’re running Debian as a web server, you can install that as well. This will take some time since there are so many packages to download and install.
The GRUB bootloader must be installed after your program has been installed. It should be safe to do so since this system is installed on the whole disk. If you’ve configured a dual-boot system, this will also allow you to choose systems at startup time.
You may now access our Debian system. When you restart your system, you will see another boot menu before your system boots up. The login menu will appear next. Choose your username and enter the password you set after installation to access the Debian desktop.
Step 3: Installing More Software With APT
No operating system comes fully assembled. More applications will surely be installed on your new Debian system. There are two approaches to this. The first is represented visually by the Software program.
In GNOME, go to Activities > Show Applications, then Software. This launches the graphical package installer.
You may look for programs by browsing the categories or using the search bar. When you click the “Install” button, the system will question you for your password before beginning the installation of the application.
The command line may also be used to install applications. However, first ensure that your system is up to date. Enter the following command to do this:
sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
This will check for and install any updated packages. Because you’re using the sudo command, the system will request you for your password, as it did with the Software program.
To install Chromium, use a terminal and type the following command:
sudo apt install chromium
Related: How to Uninstall Software in Linux With APT
Have Fun Exploring Debian!
You may begin exploring your Debian system now that it has been installed. Continue reading to discover more about Debian and why so many Linux users choose it as their work distro of choice.
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