Subject: Re: Failure to install on AMD64
To: Richard Rauch <>
From: John Goerzen <>
List: port-amd64
Date: 02/24/2004 08:20:38
On Tue, Feb 24, 2004 at 02:14:09AM -0600, Richard Rauch wrote:
> nVidia nForce3 systems have some painful problems with IOAPIC.  I use a
> custom kernel with IOAPIC turned off (with it on, I get numerous problems
> with device drivers failing in unexciting ways).

OK, it sounds that I should be able to easily enough build a kernel with
that off.  However, I noticed no weird messages on my console, and
everything *except* the bootup from the newly-installed system appeared
to be fine.

> GNU/LINUX have similar problems; when I checked their kernel sources in
> January, they just disabled IOAPIC on nForce motherboards.  (I was able to

I run a number of Debian systems here, and it is my general policy to
disable both APIC and ACPI on any uniprocessor system.  Both seem to
have fits on certain hardware, even very common pieces of it.

> Since you're able to pass a bootable kernel, you might try building a custom
> distribution with IOAPIC disabled on the INSTALL kernel, and see if that
> helps.

I'll certainly do that, but my initial problem is a little different.
It's not even getting far enough to load *any* kernel.  It seems as if
something is screwy with my bootblocks.

That's why I mentioned I could boot from my install CD and point its
root to /dev/wd0a -- but I cannot actually boot from the hard drive.

I am using GRUB to boot -- but not its NetBSD kernel feature which a) is
pretty lame on i386, and b) claims the amd64 kernel is in an
"unsupported executable format".  I am doing it the same way as I do on
my i386 platform machines: a chainloader, which basically does exactly
what NetBSD's bootselect does -- read the code from the NetBSD partition
and run it.  Works great on i386 (I get the standard netbsd boot prompt
after selecting NetBSD from my GRUB menu).

-- John