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port-sparc/39728: [dM] sparc installboot unreasonably picky

>Number:         39728
>Category:       port-sparc
>Synopsis:       [dM] sparc installboot unreasonably picky
>Confidential:   no
>Severity:       non-critical
>Priority:       medium
>Responsible:    port-sparc-maintainer
>State:          open
>Class:          sw-bug
>Submitter-Id:   net
>Arrival-Date:   Sun Oct 12 01:40:00 +0000 2008
>Originator:     der Mouse
>Release:        NetBSD 3.1
        The subject system is not yet set up to the point where running
        send-pr on it is reasonably easy; its uname -a is
NetBSD SPARC 3.1 NetBSD 3.1 (GEN31) #1: Sat Oct 11 21:36:17 UTC 2008  
root@SPARC:/home/mouse/kbuild/GEN31 sparc
        When installboot is asked to install bootblocks on a secondary
        disk, it fails gratuitously.  For example, single-user with
        sd1a mounted on /mnt:

        SPARC# installboot -v /dev/rsd1a /usr/mdec/bootxx /mnt/boot
        File system:         /dev/rsd1a
        File system type:    ffs (blocksize 8192, needswap 0)
        Primary bootstrap:   /usr/mdec/bootxx
        Secondary bootstrap: /mnt/boot
        installboot: The secondary bootstrap `mnt/boot' must be in /
        installboot: Set bootstrap operation failed

        In this particular case, it worked to chroot to /mnt and run
        installboot within the chroot.  But this is not satisfactory
        for multiple reasons: (1) it works only for root, while there's
        no reason installboot shouldn't work for anyone who can write
        to the relevant disk; (2) it requires there be an OS already
        installed in the filesystem; (3) it requres that that OS's
        installboot run under the currently-booted kernel.  (Depending
        on whether the message means "in the / directory" or "on the /
        filesystem", there might be another issue in that there's no
        reason except installboot fiat that the second-stage bootblocks
        can't be anywhere on the boot partition.)

        For example, this makes it impossible to set up something I've
        done numerous times under other releases, with a small boot
        partition with bootblocks and kernels but no OS, and a kernel
        configured to get root from a specific (other) partition.  I'd
        have to put enough of an OS on the boot partition to run
        installboot, which _really_ shouldn't be necessary.
        Boot a 3.1 SPARC single-user.  Put a filesystem on a secondary
        disk.  Mount it, copy a /boot to it, and try to use installboot
        to install first-stage bootblocks.
        None yet; getting the machine set up takes priority for now.
        If nobody else gets to this first, I'll send in a fix once it
        irritates me into prying loose the round tuits to fix it.

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