Back to Gentoo

The one major exception to my hiatus from software development was my embrace of Linux in College. While a bro introduced me to Linux in High School, as a teenager my computer couldn’t reach a router with an ethernet cord  (Linux support for wireless cards was practically non-existent in the early 2000s).

I’ve always considered Gentoo to be a bit of a rite of passage for Linux users: regardless of whether you stick with it or not, getting a Gentoo installation up and running properly teaches you so much about Linux, and to a certain extent operating systems in general, that its practically a certification unto itself. I went through the rite of passage myself, but decided to return to the less maintenance intensive world of Fedora.

With this in mind, I decided to kick off this little journey by returning to Gentoo.

Installing Gentoo is fun the first time you do it then tedious each successive time. Yet each successive time the sense of satisfaction you get when your system finally boots properly is tremendous.

This was the first time I got Gentoo working _with_ a kernel I compiled myself, and not resorting to genkernel when I wanted to throw the damn box against the wall. Hit a few hiccups with the kernel after I was too enthusiastic in stripping out components, only ran into two problems:

“Switching to clocksource tsc” – My system’s boot would hang at this init message, then die if I didn’t put the boot out of its misery within about a minute. It was an issue with the Radeon driver that resolved after I compiled the driver support as a module instead of compiling it into the kernel. (

eth0 issues – Initially my system had zero Internet connectivity. When I tried to manually restart eth0 the system complained it didn’t exist. Re-compiled a kernel with every intel Internet adapter driver I could find to rule out hardware support. The problem was that udev is automatically renaming eth0 to eno1. Automatically starting eno1 as part of the RC routine resolved the problem.

Victory. If you've used Gentoo, you know what I'm talking about.

Victory. If you’ve used Gentoo, you know what I’m talking about.


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