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4.0u0 and testing crash during install on Lynx

Dear fellow list members,

I have recently decided to revitalize the AlphaServer a colleague procured three years ago (it's been just standing around the place ever since) with Debian. The hardware configuration:

Machine: AlphaServer 2100A R4/xxx (Lynx)
- 1 CPU (? MHz), 1 memory module (? MB)
- VGA: S3 PCI card
- Network: 3Com 100BASE-TX
- Firmware: newest available from ftp.digital.com
- CD-ROM: SCSI, identifies itself software-wise as from DEC, top sticker shows ancient Toshiba logo

At the beginning of the netinst's network hardware detection (both 4.0u0 and current 'testing', progress indicator at 0%), the background turns from blue to red and the "blinking underscore" cursor appears at the bottom of the screen. The dialog window shows no sign of an error; I seem to have landed back on the SRM console (I can't see what I am typing, only that the underscore moves with each character), since typing "init" and hitting Enter re-initializes the I/O buses and returns me to a "readable" P00 prompt.

Watching the syslog on VT4 sadly does not yield any interesting information when debugging is turned off.

Has anybody come across this problem before?

Tomorrow, I'm going to try to start the installation with DEBIAN_FRONTEND=text, since newt is probably the culprit of me not seeing what the box is trying to tell me after a choke. I will post results (if any) as well as the missing pieces of the hardware configuration.

Thanks for putting up with me and my 2100A (didn't Linux gain Lynx support only recently?)!

~~ Ondra

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