I've got Debian running smoothly on an Origin 200 :)
I've also got it booting off a CD, by putting a dvh partition table,
containing an xfs partition with a kernel on it. Unfortunately,
I couldn't get dvhtool to put sash on it. (It complained the volume
header was too small, which it wasn't)
I had to use the sash off the hard disk.
Anyway, in principle, I should be able write a shell script to
create the above image, and add an isofs partition containing the debian
mips install cd. Just, I bet it can't deal with sash / the prom
properly - it's probably dependent on arcboot. Also, it would need
different kernel packages.
So, I guess an arcboot port would be the nicest solution?
Perhaps a better approach is to get the kernel to prompt users to
change disks, and stick in the vanilla debian CD? i.e. have a
"mips64-bootstrap.img" CD image, which prompts for install-1 afterwards.
PS: I don't speak for SGI