Nostalgia! Installing Fedora Core 4 on VirtualBox

For nostalgically purposes I decided to install Fedora Core 4 on VirtualBox. I had many sweet memories with Redhat and Fedora families back in 2003 when first I exposed to Linux world and after I gave a try on Mandrake 9, can see a post related to Manrake here.

Redhat 9 and Fedora 3,4 have special meaning to me. They have constructed parts of my teen era life when I was a computer major student in a vocational school which were between 2003-2006.

Anyhow, let’s get started with installation process of Fedora 4.

The first thing is to download the iso file of Fedora. To do that go to the below link to download the DVD iso (approx, 2.6 GB).

https://archive.org/download/fedora-4_release/FC4-i386-DVD.iso

After that create a new VM on your machine, but make sure that you should select IDE for hard disk, otherwise Fedora does not recognize your VM hard disk, I believe because back in 2004 or 5 SATA technology didn’t exist.

The next step is to fire up your VM and go through the installation process which is straightforward.

After completion of the installation the first thing we have to do is to make sure that the display can be resized to what we want.

To do that we need to install VMguest iso, but wait, the installation fails because Fedora by default didn’t ship with two VM guest dependencies which are Linux Kernel Headers and Linux Kernel Devel. Hence, you need to download them via Yum but all the repositories links dead except one which is still activated. To use it you need to update repositories and so forth, using following steps:

1. Disable all the repositories located in /etc/yum.repos.d

# cd /etc/yum.repos.d
# grep "enabled=1" *.repo

Then open the files provided by grep manually and change enabled=1 to enabled=0.
2. Add the new repository link.
# vi /etc/yum.conf
Add the below lines at the end of the file,

[ArchivedFedora]
name=Archive Fedora Repo
baseurl=http://archive.fedoraproject.org/pub/archive/fedora/linux/core/4/i386/os/

Save the file.
3. Update your repositories using yum.

# you update

4. Add the GPG keys for the new repositories.
Go to the below link,

http://archive.fedoraproject.org/pub/archive/fedora/linux/core/4/i386/os/
Download all GPG keys and add them using rpm command.

# rpm –import [GPGKEYS]

5. Run yum update again.
6. Install kernel headers and kernel devel packages.

# yum -y install kernel-devel kernel-headers

Now that everything installed properly, you need to install VM iso guest,

# cd /media/cdrom
# ./VboxLinuxAdditions.run

After installation finished, reboot and viola!
Fedora core 4 shipped with Firefox 1.0.4 which is painful to use. I couldn’t get later version to work, but found Opera version 9.X working great on Fedora 4. Version 10 of Opera is not working because it uses Qt 4 which did not come in Fedora 4. Feel free to go through the pain to upgrade Fedora 4 Qt from 3 to 4 and share it with me here 😀
I stick to Opera 9 and found the latest version that supported without much pain is 9.27 which is shipped in rpm package. You can download it from below link,
http://arc.opera.com/pub/opera/linux/927/final/en/i386/static/
Before proceed to installing it, you need to install compat-libstd.

# yum install compat-libstdc++-33

Then, the package can be installed easily with one command,

# rpm -ivh [OperaPackage.rpm]

If you have decided to remove Opera for whatever reasons, you can do it in two below steps,

# rpm -qa | grep -i opera

And then actual removing of the package,

# rpm -e [OperaPackageName]

Warning: I highly advise against browsing the Internet with outdated browser and OS and even if you do, don’t expect to be able to browse all sites flawlessly.
Overall, I spent around one hour to get things sort out, and didn’t find time and mood to go through the upgrade process of kernel or libraries, maybe one day I do.
If you are interested, for warm up have a look at how to do kernel upgrade at below link,
https://www.cyberciti.biz/tips/compiling-linux-kernel-26.html

And here you are, the awesome Fedora Core 4 screenshot from my VM running on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS 😛

References
https://paulsuela.wordpress.com/2009/05/28/fixing-old-fedora-core-4-repo-list/
https://archive.org/details/fedora-4_release
http://archive.fedoraproject.org/pub/archive/fedora/linux/core/4/i386/os/
https://www.cyberciti.biz/faq/fedora-install-linux-kernel-headers-developer-rpm/
https://www.centos.org/docs/5/html/yum/sn-updating-your-system.html
http://arc.opera.com/pub/opera/linux/927/final/en/i386/static/
https://www.cyberciti.biz/tips/compiling-linux-kernel-26.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fedora_(operating_system)

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