This is the second part of a series of articles. Read the first article here.
When purchasing a vServer account with Hetzner you'll have the choice of several OS images. Since I want to install Gentoo, which is not officially supported, the next step is to boot the rescue system (you can actually choose an option to not install any OS image and boot right into the rescue system).
First thing after starting the vServer I started the remote console and logged into the rescue system. Using passwd I set the new password and was able to connect via SSH to my new vServer. You can also work with the remote console but this can be a pain as I haven't found a way to enter a pipe and it's nicer to work in a known environment in your favourite terminal.
The first steps of the install process are the same as in the official install guide. I skipped chapters 1 and 2 as the rescue system is a Linux system that has everything needed to install Gentoo. Chapter 3 is also nothing to worry about as the server is already connected to the internet so the connection should be working (otherwise I wouldn't be able to access it ). I made a quick check that DNS is working and went on to chapter 4, preparing the disk.
I always find it difficult to decide how to partition my disk, which partitions to create and how big each of them should be. After some thought I ended up with the following:
root@rescue / # parted /dev/sda print
Model: ATA QEMU HARDDISK (scsi)
Disk /dev/sda: 42.9GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
Partition Table: msdos
Number Start End Size Type File system Flags
1 32.3kB 32.9MB 32.9MB primary ext2
2 32.9MB 2089MB 2056MB primary linux-swap
3 2089MB 42.9GB 40.9GB primary ext4
There is a boot partition for the kernel(s), a swap partition twice as big as the RAM of the server and the rest goes into the root partition. I know it's not perfect for a server but since I don't really know what I'm facing later on, I will keep it that way for now. I chose ext4 as file system or the root partition as it should be mature enough to be used on a server and performs a bit better than ext3. After mounting the partitions and activating the swap (see chapter 4) I moved on to chapter 5 and downloaded and extracted all the installation files.
The next step was the first of the tricky ones: configuring the compile options. But this will be covered in the next article.