Installing system tools
Some tools are missing from the stage3 archive because several packages provide the same functionality. It is now up to the user to choose which ones to install.
The first tool to decide on has to provide logging facilities for the system. Unix and Linux have an excellent history of logging capabilities - if needed, everything that happens on the system can be logged in log files. This happens through the system logger.
Gentoo offers several system logger utilities. A few of these include:
- app-admin/sysklogd - Offers the traditional set of system logging daemons. The default logging configuration works well out of the box which makes this package a good option for beginners.
- app-admin/syslog-ng - An advanced system logger. Requires additional configuration for anything beyond logging to one big file. More advanced users may choose this package based on its logging potential; be aware additional configuration is a necessity for any kind of smart logging.
- app-admin/metalog - A highly-configurable system logger.
Others are available through Portage as well - the number of available packages increases on a daily basis.
If sysklogd or syslog-ng are going to be used, it is recommended to install and configure logrotate afterwards as those system loggers don't provide any rotation mechanism for the log files.
systemd provides its own logging facility called the "journal". Installing a separate syslog provider is optional on systems running systemd, and may require additional configuration to have the syslog daemon read messages from the journal.
To install the system logger of choice, emerge it and have it added to the default runlevel using rc-update. The following example installs app-admin/sysklogd:
emerge --ask app-admin/sysklogd
rc-update add sysklogd default
Optional: Cron daemon
Next is the cron daemon. Although it is optional and not required for every system, it is wise to install one.
A cron daemon executes scheduled commands. It is very handy if some command needs to be executed regularly (for instance daily, weekly or monthly).
Gentoo offers several possible cron daemons, including sys-process/bcron, sys-process/dcron, sys-process/fcron, and sys-process/cronie. Installing one of them is similar to installing a system logger. The following example uses sys-process/cronie:
emerge --ask sys-process/cronie
rc-update add cronie default
If dcron or fcron are used, an additional initialization command needs to be executed:
Optional: File indexing
In order to index the file system to provide faster file location capabilities, install sys-apps/mlocate.
emerge --ask sys-apps/mlocate
Optional: Remote access
To be able to access the system remotely after installation, add the sshd init script to the default runlevel:
rc-update add sshd default
If serial console access is needed (which is possible in case of remote servers), uncomment the serial console section in /etc/inittab:
nano -w /etc/inittab
# SERIAL CONSOLES s0:12345:respawn:/sbin/agetty 9600 ttyS0 vt100 s1:12345:respawn:/sbin/agetty 9600 ttyS1 vt100
Depending on the filesystems used, it is necessary to install the required file system utilities (for checking the filesystem integrity, creating additional file systems etc.). Note that tools for managing ext2, ext3, or ext4 filesystems (sys-fs/e2fsprogs) are already installed as a part of the @system set.
The following table lists the tools to install if a certain filesystem is used:
|Ext2, 3, and 4||sys-fs/e2fsprogs|
|VFAT (FAT32, ...)||sys-fs/dosfstools|
For more information on filesystems in Gentoo see the filesystem article.
If there is no need for any additional networking tools, continue immediately with the section on Configuring a bootloader.
Installing a DHCP client
Although optional, the majority of users will find that they need a DHCP client to connect to the DHCP server on their network. Please take this opportunity to install a DHCP client. If this step is forgotten, then the system might not be able to get on the network thus making it impossible to download a DHCP client afterward.
In order for the system to automatically obtain an IP address for one or more network interface(s) using netifrc scripts, it is necessary to install a DHCP client. We recommend the use of net-misc/dhcpcd although many other DHCP clients are available through the Gentoo repository:
emerge --ask net-misc/dhcpcd
More information on dhcpcd can be found in the dhcpcd article.
Optional: Installing a PPPoE client
If PPP is used to connect to the internet, install the net-dialup/ppp package:
emerge --ask net-dialup/ppp
Optional: Install wireless networking tools
If the system will be connecting to wireless networks, install the net-wireless/iw package for Open or WEP networks and/or the net-wireless/wpa_supplicant package for WPA or WPA2 networks. iw is also a useful basic diagnostic tool for scanning wireless networks.
emerge --ask net-wireless/iw net-wireless/wpa_supplicant
Now continue with Configuring the bootloader.