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[jfstraeten@scarlet.be: Re: Debian on SS400-E]


On Fri, Mar 25, 2011 at 01:21:11PM +0000, chris wilkinson wrote:

> Sounds like you suceeded to do what I'd like to do, i.e. install
> Debian alongside, without destroying the NAS functions.

We are several on this list to run Debian GNU/Linux on this NAS and
rather to destroy the NAS functions, Debian empowers them !

The NAS functions are provided by the installed OS, be it Debian (or
the stock garbage), it's not something apart.

> Would you be able to summarize the steps you followed?

Sure. Basically, it's here : 


In a bit more details, you should :

1. find a serial cable, like the ones you'll see here :

   the ones on old mobo are fine ;

2. shut down the nas ;
3. open the casing and connect the cable to the serial connector which
   is there :


   (When facing the nas, it's at the back of the left side of the
   board) ;

4. connect to the other side of the serial cable a null-modem cable ;

5. connect the other side of the null-modem cable to a serial port on
   another machine ;

6. on this another machine, fire up minicom on the appropriate serial
   port. The settings for minicom are 115200 bps, 8N1 (defaults) ;

7. power on the nas and look in minicom to see the boot process. If
   the cable is good, you should be able to read (stock) kernel

   If you get only garbage (or nothing) on the screen, repeat step 1.
   until you get a suitable cable (it can be touchy to find a cable ;
   I succeed only with the third one.) ;

8. somewhere on your LAN, setup a tftp server from where to download
   the debian-installer (d-i hereafter) on the nas ;

   N.B. downloading d-i is also possible from http server or through
   {Y,Z}modem protocols.

9. on the tftp server, copy d-i in /srv/tftp. You need :


10. issue a reboot to the nas ;

11. when you see in minicom :

No network interfaces found

EM-7210 ver.T04 2005-12-12 (For ver.AA)
== Executing boot script in 1.000 seconds - enter ^C to abort

    Hit ctrl+C to break the script execution ;

12. type :

    fis load rammode <enter>
13. repeat step 11 (to break the script execution again) ;

14. enter these commands :

    ip_address -l -h

    load -v -r -b 0x01800000 -m tftp /initrd.gz

    load -v -r -b 0x01008000 -m tftp /zImage

    exec -c "console=ttyS0,115200 rw root=/dev/ram mem=256M@0xa0000000" -r 0x01800000

    N.B.  is the address for the nas (it's an attribution) ; is the address of the tftp server.
    The d-i should start.

15. at the end of the installation, d-i will put the kernel and initrd
    in the flash memory of the device for you, so you can boot it as
    any other machine.

Feel free to ask here on the list if you have problems, we are more
and more to help with the ss4000.

> Performance is no real issue for me either, I just want to serve
> media over my local network to a Roku+Roksbox media player. Roxbox
> looks for a webserver, so Apache will do the job. I did this for a
> Buffalo Linkstation LS2-MIPSEL NAS and it works fine but it's only
> small.

I see absolutely no reason for not being able to so under Debian on
this box too.

Good luck.



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