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Re: Boot from CD is a no-go

Christopher Reid Palmer <reid@pconline.com> writes:

> Steve Dunham wrote:

> [snip death on loading the initrd from CD)
> > Should be fine if it loaded the kernel without problem.  (It hasn't
> > actually started the kernel, has it?)
> This is what I get:
> 1. Welcome message and boot prompt
> 2. Loading kernel... [spinning cursor]
> 3. Loading initial RAM disk... [spinning cursor]
> 4. Data Access Exception
> 5. OK prompt
> So, I dunno. The only thing that would seem to make sense would be if my
> memory was bad (it checks out fine with the PROM's diagnostic tool), or
> if the kernel for some reason hates some part of my hardware. But I
> can't think of a way to figure out what piece of my hardware might be
> hate-able, besides using the PROM's diagnostics. Everything checks out
> fine there (SCSI bus, memory).
> Red Hat Linux 5.2/Sparc's HCL lists the ELC as 'Tier 2' supported. I
> don't see a reason for Debian to be any different; my thinking was,
> 'Okay, the ELC is supported by Sparc Linux; Debian is just one
> distribution'. I guess I could try Red Hat, but I don't really feel like
> spending $50 or trying to do an fTP install.
> > I'm not sure what is going wrong here. I'd recommend trying both the
> > linux and linux-2.2.1 kernels.
> Yes. I tried both, and got the same thing both times.
> > If all else fails you could try booting from the network and then use the
> > CD.

> But it would still need to load the RAM disk image from the CD-ROM, and
> that's what fails. Ultimately, this will be a net-booting machine that
> gets its / filesystem via NFS from my Linux/x86 system, but I need a way
> to get the distribution off the CD.

No, the network boot image contains both a kernel and the initial
ramdisk.  The i386 box would provided the address to the sparc via
RARP and the tftpboot image via tftp.

> Since the initial plan (boot from CD and install to an external HDD,
> serve the external HDD from the x86) seems doomed, I wonder if I can
> just extract the files I need by hand from the x86 to another disk on
> the x86? Has anyone done this before? The readmes on the CD didn't have
> anything to say about this.

You could do this, but you have to make a sun disklabel on the disk
(instead of a DOS partition table) with the hidden "s" command in
fdisk, and you would need to use "intelsilo" to install the bootloader
on the hard drive.  (The intelsilo package isn't in the Debian
distribution yet, and I've never tested it on a hard drive.)

I'd recommend trying tftp booting first.  There are some instructions


You will need RARP support in your kernel on the intel machine -
either compiled in or load the "rarp" module.  You will also need the:


file from the CDROM (which is a normal ISO9660 image).

I am "dunham" on #debian at irc.debian.org most evenings (EST), and I
can walk you through this if you have trouble.  (Most of the installs
I do are tftpboot installs.)


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