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Bug#252289: APIC ? (Re: Bug#252289: general: system clock)

[ Perhaps this should be forked to a separate bug number? ]

On Thu, 2004-06-24 at 19:24 +0200, Antos Andras wrote:
> On Mon, 21 Jun 2004 mjr@dsl.pipex.com wrote:
> > did the "noapic" kernel option fix your clock troubles?
> Yes!
> [...]
> So apic is the first to blame, indeed.

I've got several machines for which USB won't work unless I boot them
with "noapic".  They have USB keyboards and mice, so it is an essential
subsystem.  The installer cannot see my keyboard unless I boot with

I wonder if the problem of malfunctioning APIC [1] occurs often enough
that booting the installer with "noapic" should be the default?  Or,
perhaps a better solution, see that the installer documentation and some
brief mention on the boot screen describes just what exactly "noapic" is
and does.  That documentation should mention specific symptoms that
indicate one should try the "noapic" option, such as, if USB input
devices fail to operate, try booting with "noapic".

Certainly, the boot loader command line should contain options like
"noapic" if these options are given upon booting the installer, so that
the user does not need to edit "grub/menu.lst" by hand and then run the
"update-grub" utility.  Learning to this kind of hand configuration
should not be required so soon after a first timer's first installation
of Debian GNU/Linux.  They need time to learn how to perform that sort
of task, to cut down on the frustration level.


[1] I'm wondering whether it's truly a hardware bug, or a bug in the way
that Linux programs the APIC, since on these same boards (Abit VP6 -- an
excellent and popular dual PIII model) I did not need "noapic" up until
some later version of Linux 2.4.x --- prior to that, everything worked
fine.  At some point, after a kernel upgrade, USB no longer functioned

Karl Hegbloom <hegbloom@pdx.edu>

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