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Re: RESENT :: Boot Disk (IDE RAID(0) + Reiserfs) == :(

On Thu Jun 15, 2000 at 04:49:21PM -0400, winmutt@nerds2go.com wrote:
> Hi new to the list. Trying to get the Linux-2.4.0-test1-ac18 + Reiserfs 3.6.9 (patched) kernel rescue disk to work, but get a "Unable to find swap-space signature" and "Sorry, your computer does not have enough memory." after the root disk is loaded. Anyone know a fix?
> -Rolf
> IDE RAID(0) + Reiserfs == :(

The short answer is that the boot floppies do not work with the 2.4.x kernels.

The long answer is that this is a known problem with Linux-2.4.0-test1* vs
BusyBox.  During the 2.4 kernel series, the powers that be redefined the
'sysinfo' syscall so that instead of returning bytes, it now returns units of
PAGE_SIZE (4k on x86).  I have debated Alan Cox on this, and explained why
breaking binary compatability is a Bad Thing(tm).  The fundamental problem (and
the reason sysinfo was changed) is that sysinfo returns memory values that can
overflow a 32bit unsigned long when people enable HIGH_MEMORY support and
install many GiBs of ram, mount multiple 2GiB swap files, etc.  This is also a
problem in the 2.2.x kernel series, but nobody seems worried about it there...

I suggested the correct solution is to cap the return values from sysinfo to
ULONG_MAX, and then create a new 'sysinfo64' syscall -- thereby maintaing
binary compatability.  I even offered to code this up.  Alan has ignored me
thus far, so I am planning on appealing this to Linus when he gets back from

It is possable for me to hack up the boot floppies busybox/init.c so that it
works across both sets of kernels -- this requires manually copying both the
old and the new sysinfo structs into the busybox code and then calling uname(2)
to find out which struct to use.  Ugly but workable....


Erik B. Andersen   Web:    http://www.xmission.com/~andersen/ 
                   email:  andersee@debian.org
--This message was written using 73% post-consumer electrons--

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