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A triple-boot system with GRUB: Debian "Lenny", FreeDOS 1.0, and Windows 98SE

I can now set up a GRUB boot menu that puts all of my installed operating systems on an even keel: Debian GNU/Linux “Lenny” (the latest testing version), FreeDOS 1.0 (the latest release, and now no longer “beta”), and Windows 98SE (one given to my kids by my mother, also dating to about 2000, another that came with one of the vintage 1998 HP Pavilions that I refurbished).
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Debian GNU/Linux is huge. To download the entire “Lenny” distribution for just the one “i386” architecture would require 31 disks. However, I only downloaded the first 5 disks, as the packages are archived in order of popularity (so you can get the most commonly used packages by just downloading a few disk images — leaving the others to be ignored, installed later, or installed over the internet). As an additional convenience, Debian now provides two different first disks: one for Gnome users and one for KDE users. Since I primarily use KDE, I chose the latter of course. This should make very little difference for the purposes of this installation (it will matter more when I start trying to personalize the systems, but that’s for a later column).

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