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Re: DECStation Linux native partition format ?

To: linux-mips@fnet.fr
Subject: Re: DECStation Linux native partition format ?
From: "Mr. James W. Laferriere" <babydr@baby-dragons.com>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 09:04:37 -0800 (PST)
Cc: K.H.C.vanHouten@research.kpn.com
In-reply-to: <199903160736.IAA19176@sparta.research.kpn.com>
        Hello Karel & All ,  Please lets not follow that path .
        Just take a look at how much hair pulling goes on in getting
        an SRM(alpha) boot going using a BSD FS there PLEASE lets try
        to get something along the line of Silo going .  This IMO is
        about the best os-loader I've come accross .

        All I can do is ask .  Tyfyt, JimL

On Tue, 16 Mar 1999, Houten K.H.C. van (Karel) wrote:
> Paul M. Antoine wrote:
> > Hi gang,
> > 
> > On Mon, Mar 15, 1999 at 11:59:36AM +0100, Houten K.H.C. van (Karel) wrote:
> > > The 'native' format for a DECStation is ULTRIX, but that might not be
> > > available for all hackers. NetBSD might be an alternative, but we
> > > would have to write the fdisk utility for that format. Last of all,
> > > we could use the MSDOS/PC format, which works, but is not as flexible
> > > as the other ones.
> > 
> > >From the responses so far, it seems most folks have got the wrong end of
> > this particular stick: Karel is asking which *partition* format to use,
> > not which filesystem type to use to boot from.
> > 
> > I think the problem here is that the DECstation boot proms only know how to
> > read ULTRIX partition tables, so if we're going to allow folks to boot from
> > the bootprom on power up we're going to have to live with the ULTRIX 
> > partition
> > table format.  Short of re-writing the boot prom, or writing a multi-stage
> > boot loader (which must be stored on an ULTRIX partition table entry??)...
> > 
> > At least that's what I believe to be the case.  It could be that the boot
> > proms know how to read a boot loader, which we could replace with a lilo
> > lookalike that understands whatever partition table format we want... but
> > that's not my memory of how the DECstation works.  Anyone else??
> 
> Hi Paul, 
> 
> Correct. I was not referring to DOS FAT filesystems, only to the partition
> table formats.
> 
> As far as I can tell, the PROM's don't know about ULTRIX partitions,
> they are only able to read the bootloader from the first disk sectors,
> and pass the boot command line on to the bootloader.
> My vote would be to use the NetBSD scheme, because we have a working
> bootloader for NetBSD in source. Getting this working for linux would
> involve the following steps:
> 
> - get the netbsd bootloader to compile under linux
> - change the bsd ffs code to ext2 code
> - change fdisk to support netbsd tables.
> 
> (My kernel already supports NetBSD partition tables)
> 
> Regards,
> Karel.
> 
> -- 
> Karel van Houten
> 
> ----------------------------------------------------------
> The box said "Requires Windows 95 or better."
> I can't understand why it won't work on my Linux computer. 
> ----------------------------------------------------------
> 
> 
> 

                                , JimL
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