I recently setup an Alix board from PC Engines. I installed Debian onto a Compact Flash card using grml for the first time.
After using parted to create a single partition, I ran:
grml-debootstrap --arch i386 --filesystem ext4 --grub /dev/sdb --hostname yaqeen --mirror http://http.us.debian.org/debian \ --nopassword --release squeeze --target /dev/sdb1
I had to manually mount the partition and add console redirection for grub (and /etc/inittab).
And then, when booting, I had to manually edit the grub configuration because it was trying to find the root filesystem on /dev/sdb instead of /dev/sda. I'm sure there is some tweaking I can do via /etc/deboostrap/scripts to fix those needs.
Overall, I was very happy with the results. Thanks grml developers!
When installing a server I prefer keeping things a bit more manual.
I start by doing a pxeboot into a debirf image. Then, I run through all the disk partitioning/encrypting/etc steps listed on the May First/People Link installation page.
Then, I mount each partition in /mnt and run debootstrap:
debootstrap squeeze /mnt
Copy over any non-free firmware packages, e.g.:
cp /media/usb/firmware-bnx2_0.28+squeeze1_all.deb /mnt/root/
Next, mount the system directories and chroot:
for dir in sys dev proc; do mkdir -p /mnt/$dir; mount -o bind /$dir /mnt/$dir; done chroot /mnt
Install non-free firmware packages, e.g.:
dpkg -i /root/firmware-bnx2_0.28+squeeze1_all.deb
Add /etc/fstab, /etc/network/interfaces, /etc/crypttab files
Edit /etc/inittab to enable output to the serial console
Set the root password.
Set the hostname (edit /etc/hostname)
Install necessary packages that debootstrap won't install for you:
apt-get update apt-get install linux-image-2.6-amd64 lvm2 cryptsetup mdadm grub-pc
When prompted by grub for Linux command line options, enter:
Edit /etc/default/grub adding to the bottom:
GRUB_TERMINAL=serial GRUB_SERIAL_COMMAND="serial --unit=0 --speed=115200 --word=8 --parity=no --stop=1"
Edit /boot/grub/device.map to remove any USB devices
And run update-grub