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Re: Miscelaneous Debian Questions: PowerMac

On Sat, Apr 28, 2007 at 09:40:00PM -0400, DeServed wrote:
> Brad Boyer wrote:
> > Some of the details are a little different, but the setup of the
> > hardware and server will be the same. The main difference is just
> > what you use as the boot file. There is a utility in the Linux
> > kernel tree to package a kernel and initrd into an XCOFF file for
> > direct use by an older OF version. I presume it still works for
> > building a netboot image, but I haven't tried it myself.
> You wouldn't happen to know what this utility is called, would you?   I've
> been searching high and low all afternoon and well into the evening.   My
> eyes are buggy, the Google logo is now permanently etched into my brain,
> and I've had absolutely no luck finding this utility or a pre-made image
> for Old World netbooting purposes.

I just looked at a more recent Linux kernel tree, and it appears that
zImage.coff is built by default on PMAC32 systems. This doesn't give
you the pre-loaded initrd you probably want, but it's at least enough
to check if your netboot stuff works. I don't think that Debian will
package this file by default, but you'll have it if you build your
own kernel. There is a target for $(obj)/zImage.initrd.pmac which
will build an XCOFF format bundle with the kernel and the initrd
image which has been put in $(obj)/ramdisk.image.gz before the make
is executed.

I haven't tried it myself, but I would suggest getting the kernel
tree from an appropriate source, configure and build it, then put
your initrd as arch/powerpc/boot/ramdisk.image.gz, then run
"make arch/powerpc/boot/zImage.initrd.pmac" from the top level of
the tree where you have already built the kernel. This should get
you what you need. If you're trying to do a Debian install, you
should start out with the Debian kernel source tree and the Debian
default kernel config.

> I did manage to find some references to something called a zImage.coff file.  
> I'm assuming that this is what I will need to place in the tftp directory
> of my server in order to netboot.  I'll be damned, however, if I can find
> the utility for creating the file, a copy of the file, or any inclination
> of how to create such a file.   Hmmm...

You would need to get the kernel source and build it yourself, but
zImage.coff is the file you need. It's just that since most people
don't use it anymore, it's unlikely that anyone makes it available.

	Brad Boyer

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