Subject: Re: Ideas on one-floppy installation
To: Frank van der Linden <>
From: Andrew Cagney <>
List: current-users
Date: 10/19/1994 11:09:24
Excerpts from mail: 18-Oct-94 Ideas on one-floppy install.. "Perry E.
Metzger"@imsi. (2927)

> Oh, its even harder than that -- if you use MFS qua MFS you lose. I
> really spaced completely. MFS works by establishing a bunch of memory
> inside an mfs process which it then hands off to the mount call, so it
> can't be invoked before boot and isn't appropriate. BSDI gets around
> all this by not letting you install from floppy at all -- they just
> boot from floppy. (They use the MFS off the boot floppies to provide a
> place for scratch files.)

To follow on from this should NetBSD.i386 be using at a multi stage boot
(like Sun)?  (There is no space left in the existing bootblocks to do
anything other then read a file.) ie:

	1.	Boot blocks reads in loader (into low memory)
	2.	loader reads in kernel/fs/etc (into high memory)

Further, a loader could include network boot code (libnetboot.a) so
installing direct from the net would be possible (Is that the Net in
NetBSD :^).

If someone is interested, I got as far as hacking the boot block so that
it puts a `loader' into low memory in 16bit mode and (separatly) being
able to link a `network' boot module with stub network interface
routines (using libnetbsd.a).  You would want a good x86 debugging
environment, ethernet docs and time to take this further.

Hmm, may be this getting into post 1.0 stuff ...

		Just USD0.0146 worth