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Installing Ubuntu on Acer Revo

By , Tuesday 20th July 2010 in Linux

I will shortly be setting up my own web design and development company and I have decided that I need to have a development web server and so I am going to use a net top pc running Linux to serve that purpose. This was originally going to be my notes on how to set-up the server, but I have posted it here just in case it can help somebody else.

The net top pc I am going to be using is my Acer Revo R3600 which I got awhile back to act as a multimedia server. Shortly after my PC broke and it took over as my main desktop and now it will serve as a web server.

I will be installing Ubuntu 10.04 Server Edition, but first a little look at the Revo specifications.

The Aspire Revo is small but powerful, fuelled by the latest mini processor, complemented by an advanced NVIDIA ION graphics chip set and HDMI™ connectivity supports full 1080P HD.

  • Intel® Atom 230 processor @ 1.60 ghz
  • NVIDIA ION chipset
  • 1 GB SDRAM
  • 160GB Serial ATA II hard disk
  • nVidia GeForce 9400
  • High Definition audio (7.1)
  • Four-in-one card reader
  • High definition headphone and microphone jacks
  • Gigabit Ethernet port
  • HDMI port
  • eSATA port
  • D-Sub VGA port

Acer Aspire Revo R3600
Acer Aspire Revo R3600

Installation and Configuration

Having downloaded Ubuntu Server Edition x86 installation image and used Universal USB Installer to create a bootable USB stick to install from, the installation went perfectly smooth. The actual install is very simple and strait forward. I chose to install the LAMP server (Linux, Apache, Mysql, Php) and OpenSSH. That concludes the "official" installation, and the start of the server setup.

The first thing I needed was a internet connection and that means getting the Wireless adaptor installed and configured. Luckily the wireless card in the Revo was already detected and a driver installed, so al it needed was to be configured.

Wireless Configuration

Wireless configuration is held in a file located in /etc/network/interfaces. This needs to be edited to add adaptor information for wireless lan.

sudo pico -w /etc/network/interfaces

And add the following lines

auto wlan0
iface wlan0 inet dhcp
wireless-essid WIRELESS_SSID
wireless-key s:WIRELESS_KEY
wireless-channel 11
wireless-mode managed

Change WIRELESS_SSID and WIRELESS_KEY to match your network settings. You can then use the command below to restart network interfaces.

/etc/init.d/networking restart

Update Hostnames

Not sure why we have to do this, but it fixes the hostnames properly.

echo <yourservername>.<yourdomain> > /etc/hostname
/etc/init.d/hostname restart

Updates

Now the wireless interface is functioning, I have connected to the update server and downloaded the latest package lists manually.

aptitude update
aptitude safe-upgrade

This may take a while to download all the latest packages and should be followed by a reboot of the system.

Mapping Network Drives

I plan on storing all the files for the webserver on a NAS (Buffalo LinkStation) so I need to setup and configure Ubuntu to connect to the drive at boot. My initial attempts to add an entry into /etc/fstab were met with an un-bootable system, so I have decided to put an entry into crontab to execute the manual mount command at bootup.

First create a new folder /usr/www/

sudo mkdir /usr/www

Then edit the crontab.
sudo crontab -e

And add the following line

@boot sudo mount -t cifs //192.168.0.10/websites/www /usr/www

This should mount the NAS at boot time.

Install PureFTPd

We may need FTP on the server so let's install it now. PureFTPd can be installed with the following command:

aptitude install pure-ftpd-common pure-ftpd-mysql

Now edit the file /etc/default/pure-ftpd-common

sudo pico /etc/default/pure-ftpd-common

Then make sure that the start mode is set to standalone and set VIRTUALCHROOT=true:

...
STANDALONE_OR_INETD=standalone
...
VIRTUALCHROOT=true
...

Restart PureFTPd

/etc/init.d/pure-ftpd-mysql restart

PHP

My installation of PHP did not have any of the extensions loaded, so here is the command I used to manually add them. It can also be used to install PHP if it isn't already installed.

sudo aptitude install libexpat1 ssl-cert libapache2-mod-php5 php5 php5-common php5-gd php5-mysql php5-imap phpmyadmin php5-cli php5-cgi libapache2-mod-fcgid apache2-suexec php-pear php-auth php5-mcrypt mcrypt php5-imagick imagemagick libapache2-mod-suphp libopenssl-ruby

Then run the following command to enable the Apache modules suexec, rewrite, ssl, actions, and include:

a2enmod suexec rewrite ssl actions include

Restart Apache for changes to take effect.

I've also made quite a few changes to php.ini to aid with development and debugging.

Also of Interest

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About the Author

Tim Trott

Tim is a professional software engineer, designer, photographer and astronomer from the United Kingdom. You can follow him on Twitter to get the latest updates.

Further Reading
2 thoughts on “Installing Ubuntu on Acer Revo”
  1. Gravatar
    R. Drew Davis

    As shown here, the server is getting its IP address from a DHCP server. That can result
    In the Linux server co,ing up on a different IP address when rebooted. It
    Is probably better to tweak your DHCP server's configuration to
    Assign a fixed address to your Linux server. In my home, the DHCP
    Ser:er runs on the router and can be configured to assign fixed addresses to
    Specific machines (recognized by their NIC MAC address. I have FIOS and the one gotcha I
    Ran into is Verizon reserves block of IP addresses for each TV's settop box.
    Take care to stay out of their block of IP addresses. IIRC it is 192.168.0.100 to 150
    That they regard as reserved.

    But you've given very little for me to go on, so I'm just guessing.

  2. Gravatar
    linux noob

    hi

    your guide was very useful, but since I upgraded my pc to win7 I cannot ftp to my linux box - "425 Sorry, invalid address given"

    can you help me fix this?

    thx

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