Experiencing Linux on SPARC: LDOM@Gentoo

On it goes, I'll begin with gentoo, latest Minimal CD I could put my hands on (install-sparc64-minimal-20090727.iso). After binding/starting the LDOM one boots it nearly as usual:

root@batoka-labor,linux-boot>telnet 0 5000
Trying 0.0.0.0...
Connected to 0.
Escape character is '\^]'.

Connecting to console "gentoo" in group "gentoo" ....
Press ~? for control options ..

{0} ok boot cdrom
Boot device: /virtual-devices@100/channel-devices@200/disk@1  File and args:
SILO Version 1.4.14
\\

----------------------------------------------------
Welcome to the Gentoo/Linux SPARC64 weekly InstallCD
----------------------------------------------------

boot: gentoo cdroot=/dev/vdiskb1

It took me half a day to find out about the "cdroot" option and its usage. It became necessary because the gentoo kernel only checks "normal" CDROM drive locations.

After a lot of Linux kernel boot messages, it runs in an error:

>> Making tmpfs for /newroot
>> Looking for the cdrom
>> Attempting to mount media:- /dev/vdiskb1
>> Media found on /dev/vdiskb1
>> Determining root device...
>> Determining looptype ...
>> Mounting squashfs filesystem
mount: mounting /dev/loop0 on /newroot/mnt/livecd failed: Invalid argument
!! Failed to $1; failing back to the shell...

The kernel has only little more to say:

# dmesg|tail
RPC: Registered udp transport module.
RPC: Registered tcp transport module.
fuse init (API version 7.10)
Intel(R) PRO/1000 Network Driver - version 7.3.21-k3-NAPI
Copyright (c) 1999-2006 Intel Corporation.
EXT4-fs: Update your userspace programs to mount using ext4
EXT4-fs: ext4dev backwards compatibility will go away by 2.6.31
ISO 9660 Extensions: Microsoft Joliet Level 3
ISO 9660 Extensions: RRIP_1991A
SQUASHFS: Mounting a different endian SQUASHFS filesystem on loop0
#

Trying the mount command from the command line fails too. Next try: same setup but use 2008.0 Gentoo minimal CD image:

>> Making tmpfs for /newroot
>> Looking for the cdrom
!! Media not found
>> No bootable medium found. Waiting for new devices...
>> Looking for the cdrom
!! Media not found
!! Could not find CD to boot, something else needed!
>> Determining root device...
!! Could not find the root block device in .
   Please specify another value or: press Enter for the same, type "shell" for a shell, or "q" to skip...
root block device() :: shell
To leave and try again just press <Ctrl>+D


BusyBox v1.7.4 (2008-06-12 10:01:44 UTC) built-in shell (ash)
Enter 'help' for a list of built-in commands.

/bin/ash: can't access tty; job control turned off

Well, again no luck. This time the failure has any easy explanation: Looks like this CD image does not a vdisk driver in it, the  "/dev" directory does not list any vdisk devices...

I'll go check with Dr. Google once more, although seemingly no one has tried before.

 
Comments:

I am interesting to Linux on LDoms. So I am looking forward to reading your progess.

By the way, could you resolve vdisk driver problem?

Posted by Ryo on August 12, 2009 at 08:40 AM CEST #

I've run into the same problem. The CD is using SquashFS 4.0, but it requires the latest kernel (2.6.30) which is marked "needs testing" for SPARC. I filed a bug report, it was fixed, and it \*should\* be resolved at the next autobuild (the one after 8/3/2009).

Posted by MegaShine on August 20, 2009 at 02:15 PM CEST #

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About

Before Sun was acquired by Oracle I was about 12 yrs in pre-sales covering SPARC and Solaris. Today I work in a field role in Oracle Microelectronics and focus on SPARC performance, including working and presenting at customer sites all over EMEA

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