Follow the installation directions that come with the distribution.
There are generally 2 strategies at this point:
We recommend installing only the OS to minimize the chances of conflicts resulting from installing 2 or more copies of one of the OpenACS system components en:openacs-system.
Note if any of the components of OpenACS are installed with the distribution. which or whereis can help identify existing components that run from the standard shell.
Many additional programs, such as a build environment (gcc), Mail Transport Agent (MTA), and source control system, are also needed for a fully operational installation. Most of these are included with a basic OS installation.
You might want to install some of these after a minimum OS install, since OpenACS administration usually assumes you have these (or alternates) installed:
some helpful documentation for installing *nix flavors
These DEMOs install a temporary *nix OS on your system:
Or, lease a hosted system with a *nix OS and OpenACS installed on it.
Once you get your OS installed, it's imperative that you secure your installation. As Jon Griffin repeatedly warns us, "No distribution is secure out of the box." The Reference Platform implements some basic precautions, but security is a process, not a condition. If you are responsible for a computer hooked to the internet, you are responsible for learning some rudiments of security, such as monitoring the state of a computer, maintaining patch levels, and keeping backups. We recommend these resources: