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Re: Bug#408588: Debian on SGI Altix IA-64

On Thursday 01 February 2007 01:02, dann frazier wrote:
> Is /proc mounted at this point? 

Yes it is.

> If so, then that's probably the best 
> detection method available for etch. We could do something like [1]
> and not create the serial devices - but that feels like a hack to
> me. What if someone put a serial pci card in one of these machines and
> wanted to use that as a console?

I agree - not creating the serial device would be a problem for a pci serial 

> Is there a way we can support both? What if we create a ttySG0 file in
> init-udev-devices and pass console=ttySG0 to the kernel[2]?
> If that works, I don't think its a big deal to ask altix users to pass
> console=ttySG0 to the installer - we could even put it in the elilo
> help menu (which isn't localized).
> St?phane: can you test these two patches and report back what works?
> If /proc isn't mounted at this point, you might remove the if
> statement around [2].

The first patch works. When testing the second one, I realized that passing 
console=xx or CONSOLE=xx is not the same (sorry about that). console in 
lowercase is used by the kernel as the console and not keep as an environment 
variable. Using CONSOLE in uppercase is not used by the kernel but passed as 
an environment variable.

Busybox tries to use the CONSOLE env. var. (if present) to know which device 
to open. So using console=ttySG0 is not working because there is no env. var. 
set and busybox will then use /dev/tts/0. If I put CONSOLE=ttySG0 it works. 
In fact, putting CONSOLE=whatYouWant will work because busybox will try to 
open 'whatYouWant', it will fail, then it will fallback to the 
default /dev/console which works. When booted, if I look at 
the /proc/self/fd/ links, they point to /dev/console.

The only way to have those links point to /dev/ttySG0 is to pass 
CONSOLE=/dev/ttySG0 (/dev/ is important in this case because busybox don't 
add it if you just pass ttySG0), and to have the /dev/ttySG0 device created 
with the patch number 2.

So I can boot with no patches if I put CONSOLE=something and this will have 
the effect of using /dev/console. I can also boot with patch 2 and 
CONSOLE=/dev/ttySG0 and this will have the effect of using /dev/ttySG0. Maybe 
this information will give a hint on how to solve the last console problem 
which is the 90console post-install script that dosn't activate a console tty 
login in /etc/inittab and put that console in /etc/securetty on Altix.


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