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Re: How to boot a kernel?

> I've got a 9672-RC4.  The SE currently doesn't have a CDROM,   ...

> As I thought I said in the email, it has *no* OS.  I got it
> without any DASD or other storage systems,   ...

Wow!   There must be an interesting story behind that.

> At the moment, I don't have any DASD, and am hoping to just get
> some sort of kernel to boot and run with an NFS root or something
> to check out the hardware until I can get some DASD to put on it.

I'm guessing you have an OSA or other ethernet in the "frame"?
That is,  whatever network connectivity the SE has
will not serve the system but only its own needs.

You can compare what you're trying to do to a PC.
The difference is the more sophisticated support hardware.
(A PC doesn't have another computer for its "support element",
so it has to have all that smarts in BIOS ROM.)   So you want to
go diskless.   That will work,  but you'll need access to a couple G
of storage served via NFS.   Got that?   (Can be another Linux box.
Can possibly be a Sun or other Unix.   I find that one of our
"appliance" file servers does NOT suffice because of how it
handles device files,  not presented to Linux in a usable way.)

Running diskless will be tough.
Most people don't go that route with physical S/390 hardware
because you lose the biggest value of mainframe hardware:  the I/O.

The installation media gives you a RAMDISK system.
What you're supposed to do is answer enough questions on the
line-mode console to bring that critter onto the network
and then mount other media  (the CD as a filesystem
instead of as one or more pseudo tapes).   You can do
what you're talking about doing,  but the installers are
intended more for arranging DASD and installing there,  not NFS.

I hope you will not give up on this mainframe you have acquired.
You may need help from someone who already knows S/390 type systems
because you may be lacking some essential components.   One thing
that the mainframe has  (another difference from PC land)  is an
I/O definition,  really a profile of your whole system,  "IOCDS".
(It has other names,  and I get lost in the acronym alphabet soup.)
If your IOCDS is wrong,  the system won't boot right:  it will have
a different idea of what is attached from what is actually present.
Think of it as a revved up PCI bus,  but on the 9672 less automatic.

-- R;

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