I'm trying to install Debian 8.0.0 from a USB using a preseed. I created the USB using UNetbootin and manually placed the preseed file into the uppermost level of the USB drive. Then in the UNetbootin autogenerated GRUB menu I added preseed/file=/cdrom/preseed.cfg to the boot command for the Automated Install option.

All of this appears to be good since I have successfully used this stick on another machine and everything worked with no issues. The problem, as far as I can tell, is that the current machine claims to have issues with networking hardware. When I begin the installation manually it detects network hardware and then states that "non-free drivers" are missing and asks whether I would like to insert some media to correct this.

I don't believe I actually need these drivers because when I continue the install and say to ignore the issue it configures all other networking things correctly. Additionally, the machine has Windows currently installed on it and Windows gets on the web with no issues (tho potentially it has the drivers? I don't know).

Is there some way for me to tell it during the auto install that any issues that come up I don't care about? Or some way to actually address theses issues manually as they come up during the automated install? I want to continue to use the preseed, I just want to address these two prompts manually so it will shut up and go away.

Thoughts? If you need more information simply let me know. I'm somewhat new to Linux installs. Thanks in advance.

EDIT: I have now attempted with and without an active ethernet connection and it freaks out all the same.

  • Does your system use the tg3 driver by any chance? Jun 4 '15 at 20:06
  • "I don't believe I actually need these drivers" why are you saying so when the installation itself tells you that it detects network hardware and then states that "non-free drivers" are missing?
    – Braiam
    Jun 4 '15 at 21:01
  • 1
    @Braiam The tg3 driver says something to that effect when in most cases it's not true, and that prompts the request for media containing the non-free firmware. There's a fair chance that's what's happening here... Jun 4 '15 at 21:17
  • @StephenKitt isn't there a bug report about that?
    – Braiam
    Jun 5 '15 at 3:34
  • @Braiam when I look up the network drivers in question, which I apologize for not having the information for you (I resolved it and can't get to the page to reproduce the error), it states that it is common to get the warning that additional drivers are necessary when in fact they aren't. EDIT: Page I originally found referencing the problem: forums.debian.net/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=72645 Jun 5 '15 at 3:55

Is there some way for me to tell it during the auto install that any issues that come up I don't care about?

To disable the d-i from asking for non-free drivers for networking you can add d-i hw-detect/load_firmware boolean false so it ignores any hardware that needs non-free drivers.

# If non-free firmware is needed for the network or other hardware, you can
# configure the installer to always try to load it, without prompting. Or
# change to false to disable asking.
#d-i hw-detect/load_firmware boolean true



Try this command line:

amd64-auto url=(yourpreseedurl) hostname=(pc name) hw-detect/load_firmware=false

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