SIPB Installer for Athena Linux

June 3, 2003

As of this writing, MIT Information Systems provides an installer for Athena 9.1, which is based on Redhat Linux 7.3. We actively encourage you to use this installer, and discourage use of the SIPB Installer for Athena Linux, because the SIPB Installer has not been maintained as new versions of Athena have been released. For information on the I/S Athena Linux installer, you can go to

July 16, 2002

Information Systems now has an installer for Athena 9.0 (Based on Redhat Linux 7.1). As this installer supports more hardware, we suggest that you try it first, if you have no existing data on your computer that you plan on preserving. For more information on this installer, you can go to

May 9, 2001

The SIPB installer for I/S Athena-Linux is at last ready for production use. This installer allows you to install the same Athena-Linux as is running on cluster workstations on any intel x86 based computer supported by Red Hat Linux. Like a cluster workstation, or a private Athena workstation installed by hotline, a workstation installed with the SIPB installer should be capable of taking updates automatically, and should be fully supported by Information Systems.

The one-sheet guide to installing is available in DVI, PostScript, and Adobe PDF.

If you have installed, or are interested in installing Athena-Linux, please subscribe yourself to linux-announce by running, at the athena% prompt,

blanche linux-announce -a $USER
You'll hear about future changes to the installer, as well as other issues that may come up.

Bugs in the installer can be reported to There is unfortunately still a known problem with some revisions of the 3com 3c905b and 3c905c ethernet cards; they fail to auto-detect correctly with the standard floppy, and the installer fails to find the network. We'll send an announcement to linux-announce if and when a fix becomes available.

For general help regarding linux and the installer, you can write to This is a public list whose members are volunteers who often have helpful suggestions.

For maintenance problems with a Linux-Athena workstation, please consult the Private Athena Workstation: Owner's Guide. Other I/S resources such as Athena Consulting are also available to you.

If you are buying a computer, and are thinking of running Linux on it, you can buy a machine just like the cluster ones, or you can look at the list of PCs that MIT recommends for Windows users. See for the cluster configuration, and for the MIT recommended hardware. Any of the listed configurations will work fine with our installer. If you buy a machine of the cluster configuration, you will be able to use the Information Systems maintained installer, which you can find in the bootkit locker on Athena.