How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

What Do I Need?

What is CentOS 8?

CentOS is a Linux operating system that provides an open-source, fully community-supported, server computing platform. It was originally released in 2004 and is essentially an open-source version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), with a few minor differences. Unlike a lot of other open-source operating systems, CentOS maintains every distributed version for 10 years, with releases every 2 years.

Install CentOS 8

  1. Prepare your Equipment

Always ensure that you’re only downloading from a verifiable mirror.

  • Download the latest CentOS ISO image.
  • Create a bootable USB drive by using Rufus Tool. I’d recommend using a USB drive that has a capacity of at least 8gb.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • A basic installation of CentOS will require a system with a minimum of 8GB of hard disk space and 2GB of memory for optimal performance.
  • A reliable and secure internet connection.

  1. Install from Your Bootable Installation Media (USB)

  • Power up your computer with your bootable USB inserted into an empty slot.
  • Ensure that you’ve changed your boot order to boot from your USB stick containing the operating system.
  • Select ‘Install CentOS Linux 8.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Enjoy a cup of coffee while you wait for the boot messages to finish. This depends on the speed of your machine.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Select Installation Language

  • On the ‘Welcome Screen’, select your preferred installation and click ‘Continue’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Installation Summary

  • On the next screen, an installation summary will be displayed showing all of the options that need to be configured successfully in order to proceed. We’re going to give all of these our attention in due course.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Configure Keyboard

  • Select the ‘Keyboard’ option and configure the keyboard.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • The default ‘Keyboard Layout’ is ‘English (us)’. In the right text field, you can type a few words to check that your keyboard is functioning correctly.
  • To add a new ‘Keyboard Layout’ simply click the + button on the bottom left of the layout dialog.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Configure Language

  • Select the ‘Language Support’ option.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Select your preferred language and click ‘Done’ on the top left of the dialog.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Configure Time and Date

  • Select the ‘Time and Date’ option.
  • Select your country and city from the ‘Region’ and ‘City’ dropdown menus. Alternatively, you can select your region and city from the interactive map. Set your time and date at the bottom of the dialog and click ‘Done’ on the top left of the dialog.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Configure Installation Source

  • Select ‘Back’ and go back to the main menu.
  • Select the ‘Installation Source’ option.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • No changes should be required as your source installation media will be autodetected. It’s always good to check to forestall any future installation issues, however.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Software Selection
  • Select the ‘Software Selection’ option.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • You’re now presented with six options from which to select your base environment and additional add-ons.
  • I’d recommend selecting a ‘Server with GUI’ base environment. For this guide, we’ll only select the following add-ons:
  1. windows file server,
  2. debugging tools,
  3. file and storage server,
  4. FTP server,
  5. guest agents,
  6. mail server,
  7. network file system client,
  8. network servers.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • When you’re finished, click ‘Done’ on the top left of the dialog.

  1. Installation Destination
  • On the ‘main menu’, select the ‘Installation Destination’ option.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • By default, the installer automatically detects your hard drives, and will select automatic partitioning of your primary hard drive.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • If you want to manually change your partition sizes, select the ‘Custom’ option under ‘Storage Configuration’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. If you’ve selected ‘Custom’ you’re taken to the ‘Manual Partitioning’ dialog.
  2. Select ‘Click here to create them automatically’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. The mount points of each partition are then intelligently created by the installer.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. At this point, you can add additional space to the different partitions. Not recommended if you’re a beginner.
  2. When you’re finished, click ‘Done’ on the top left of the dialog.

  • A ‘Summary of Changes’ will be displayed. It shows how your hard drive is going to be partitioned. If you approve, click ‘Accept Changes’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Kdump Selection
  • Select the ‘KDUMP’ option from the main menu.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • KDUMP is a smart utility that dumps system information when your system crashes for analysis. This helps you to determine the cause of the system failure. Default settings are satisfactory for most cases.[

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8/howToDirection]

  • Leave all of the settings as they are and click ‘Done’ on the top left of the dialog.

  1. Set Network and Hostname

  • Back to the main menu and select the ‘Network and Hostname’ option.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • The ‘Network and Hostname’ dialog displays the active network interfaces on your computer. In this instance, the active interface is ‘enp0s3’.
  • To enable automatic IP acquisition turn the switch on the top right to the ‘On’ position.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Otherwise, click on the ‘Configure’ button to manually enter your network settings.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • This shows you the dialog below. Click on the ‘ipv4’ tab option and select ‘Manual’ from the ‘Method’ dropdown menu. Next, click on the ‘Add’ button and type in your preferred IP address, subnet mask, and default gateway. Ensure that you also provide valid DNS server details.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Finally, select ‘Save’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • To set your hostname, fill in the text box in the bottom left corner. I highly recommend changing your hostname as it helps to obfuscate your server’s identity from potential intruders in the future. Always remember to click ‘Apply’ after changing your hostname and click ‘Done’ on the top left of the dialog.

  1. Begin the CentOS 8 Installation (Phew – Finally)

  • Now that you’ve configured all your base options, click ‘Begin Installation’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • The next dialog will prompt you to configure ‘User Settings’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Set Root User Password

  • Select the ‘Root Password’ text box and enter a new password. Remember to use a complex password following these criteria:
  1. minimum 12 characters,
  2. lowercase and uppercase alphanumeric,
  3. include special characters.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  1. Click ‘Done’ on the top left of the dialog.

  1. Create New User Account

  • Select the ‘User Creation’ option to create a regular system user. This is important as you should never install every single application or script as ‘root’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Enter your name, username, and complex password in the appropriate text boxes.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Click ‘Done’ to save the regular system user.

  1. CentOS Installation Process

  • The installer will now, finally, install the previously selected packages, dependencies, and the grub bootloader. I’d recommend fixing yourself another cup of coffee as this can take a while depending on your internet connection and server specification.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Finally, you’ll get a notification that the installation was successful. Click ‘Reboot’ to restart your server. Don’t pat yourself on your back yet, we’re not done.

  1. Boot and Accept License Agreement

  • On server restart, select the first option shown in your grub menu.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • And yes, you will be required to accept the license information.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Click on the ‘License Information’ option and select the ‘I accept the license agreement’ checkbox.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Finally, click ‘Finish Configuration’ to complete the installation process and log into your new CentOS server.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Log in, and select ‘Start Using CentOS Linux’.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • CentOS 8 is nothing short of amazing in terms of a secure and feature-rich server operating system.

How to Install and Setup CentOS 8

  • Now pat yourself on the back, you’ve successfully installed the latest version of CentOS 8 on your new server.

Next Steps

There’s a lot that can be done next to your server dependent on its intended use case. Whatever you’re planning to use your new server for, I advise logging in as the ‘root’ superuser at your soonest opportunity and then running the following commands to ensure you have the latest updates and fixes:

yum upgrade

yum update

reboot

Conclusion

Personally, I’m a massive fan of CentOS, and Kali, of course. Whatever your plans are for your new server, make sure you keep on top of security updates and upgrades. Watch this space for more how-to guides for hardening and securing your CentOS installation. Be secure and above all, have fun.

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