Subject: Re: Trying to run NetBSD on intel based cobalts.
To: None <>
From: Christopher Schultz <>
List: port-cobalt
Date: 09/19/2005 09:12:27
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> Of course I am not trying to load a mips kernel on an intel based
> cobalt, I am just trying to work out a way to make its boot loader load
> the kernel.

You mentioned that it "doesn't seem to work", but that something is
happening. Can you be a little more specific?

Usually there's a hardware bootloader (the one you're calling the
"Cobalt bootloader"?) that loads the software bootloader (which, on a
regular PC is usually stored in the boot sector of the hard disk). I
have forgotton where this is on the Cobalt-mips boxes, but it's pretty
much the same thing. The Cobalt bootloader is super-simple and does
nothing but get the disk bootloader into memory and execute it.

The disk bootloader is also pretty simple, because it's generally
limited by the size of the boot sector (often around the 512k mark).
This bootloader loads the final, more complicated bootloader which knows
how to do things like find and un-gzip the kernel, etc.

Do you know which, if any of these, is being executed? For example, does
it give you the "loading kernel\|/-\|/-\|/-\|/-\|/-\|/-\|/-..." message
like the Cobalt(mips) bootloader does?

I used to have 16MB of RAM in my mips-based Cobalt and the loader used
after 1.6.0 wasn't capable of properly loading the kernel without either
(a) overwriting itself in memory or (b) writing the kernel "off the end"
of memory -- which often results in it's being written to the beginning
or memory. In either case, it was bad.

Is it possible that the Intel-based bootloader has a similar problem?


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