[qubes-users] Install failure, HP Z420, both 4.1.2 and 4.2.0rc5

Today I have been trying to install Qubes on an HP Z420 workstation and it’s been an exercise in frustration. The system had been a Proxmox host for the last eight months and it had no trouble doing that.

I have two small USB sticks, one for each ISO, and I’m using Ventoy.

The onboard ethernet port in the Z420 is connected to the network I use every day, and thinking maybe ethernet was going bad, I added a USB ethernet dongle. There are a number of other machines here, no complaints from them.

The machine isn’t getting an IP via DHCP. If I ctrl-alt-f2 I can manually set an IP, gateway, DNS, and then the install on 4.1.2 moves forward for a while, but finally errors out.

Having successfully installed 4.1.2 on this machine for a day back in October, I’m at a bit of a loss here. I thought I would post here and see if anyone else is encountering problems like this. The next logical step would be setting my desktop up as a firewall and watching traffic in detail, which I am trying to avoid.

After much fiddling around … I have an LSI 1.6TB NVMe PCIe storage device that works just fine with Ubuntu and I think it even behaved with Proxmox 7.4 in an experiment earlier this year. I also have a couple cheap NVMe PCIe carriers and some no-name 120GB SSDs left over from a caching experiment, they’re also otherwise fine.

But when attempting to install either 4.1.2 or 4.2.0rc5 these devices fail partway through install and during initial setup the ethernet works if manually configured, but will not pull an address via DHCP. I just reset the machine, slipped a random 250GB 2.5" SATA SSD into it, and it’s happily installing the fedora-37 template stuff while I’m typing this up.

I guess the combination of C602 chipset workstation and NVMe isn’t common. I keep looking at the Z440s, the price keeps dropping, but I have a pair of Z420s that show all signs of planning to outlive me …