Beginning installation & partitioning
Although PCLinuxOS uses the KDE, which is a single-click desktop by default, in this instance, the double-click is necessary to make things work. It is obvious that this small, simple change is meant to put new Windows converts at ease.
Double click on the Install PCLinuxOS icon to begin. The Draklive wizard will pop up and guide you through the installation.
First, you must chose the type of hard drive that you want to install PCLinuxOS.
Now comes the crucial issue of partitioning. I have most thoroughly covered the partitioning section in all of my other tutorials. Furthermore, the partitioning in PCLinuxOS is virtually identical to that in Mandriva. Please accept my humble laziness and refer to the Installing Mandriva Linux - Page 2 for extra details, should you require help.
What I'm going to do?
Well, as always, I will custom-partition the hard disk. I like to partition the hard disks in the following order - swap, root and home, with root and home formatted in ext3 filesystem.
Alternatively, you can simply use the free space and let the wizard make the choices automatically. Be very careful if you have more than one hard disk, if the hard disks are not empty or if you dual, triple or multi-boot with other operating systems. All of these issues have been extensively covered already.
First, you will be asked to backup your data. Since our hard disk is empty, we can proceed.
It's time to create partitions. You can choose Auto allocate if you are not comfortable with partitioning. Remember than none of the changes you make will be written to the hard disk until you click Done, and even then, you will be prompted twice about your choices, so do not worry.
Here's what I did. I toggled to expert mode. Then, I created a 512MB swap partition, a 5GB root (/) partition and a 2.5GB home (/home) partitions. Different colors correspond to different filesystems.
Note: Using the expert mode allows you to specify partition size by writing an actual number in designated field rather than using a slider to set the value. The slider is not very precise and may annoy you if you are anal about numbers like I am.
Once you click Done, you will be informed that the Partition table will be written to the disk.
And again, a big red warning! The partitions will be formatted (in the selected filesystem format). At this point, it is important to note that the Draklive wizard has a tiny glitch. In the expert mode, you have the ability to format partitions (see under Choose action in the image above). If you do so, you will not get to see the big red warning. On the other hand, if you use the expert mode, it is very likely that you know what you're doing.
Next, another warning / message that the installation is about to begin. Click Next to proceed.
At this stage, the installation will begin. It should not take much more than 10-15 minutes.