Subject: Re: Power Mac Upgrade Cards
To: None <>
From: Thomas Michael Wanka <>
List: port-macppc
Date: 09/01/2001 17:06:45

the Metabox Jocard G4 seems to have a problem. It will only boot 
MacOS from the harddrive or cdrom (here with a PM7500) after 
MacOS started with their driver installed. So if you somehow 
manipulate the nvram (like using systemdisk) you will need to either 
boot with another CPU card to MacOS with the Metabox extension 
installed or have a bootfloppy prepared, that has the extension 
installed. This has been reported by a german magazine, and 
although Metabox claim there is a solution to this they have not 
answered my e-mail message in the last five days. 

This does not affect NetBSD. But if someone does not have another 
CPU card, when systemdisk is run, MacOS is no longer accessible. 
This should probably be mentioned in the FAQ somewhere. A 
simple solution is a boot disk (like the apple Disk Tools PPC.img), 
delete diskfirstaid and/or drivesetup and copy the metabox driver to 
the extensions folder. So after running netbsd just boot with this 
floppy, shutdown and then it is possible to boot macos from the 
harddrive again. It is lousy, but it works.

For systems that have OF that defaults to ttya I recommend such a 
bootdisk with systemdisk installed (my PM7500 would crash when I 
swap floppies) so that in the case something happens to the nvram 
one can get the mac working again. 



> Well, I installed and used my XLR8 card under MacOS for about a
> week before putting that machine up under NetBSD 24/7 and 
> stealing the former MacOS drive to play with LFS a bit. So I can't 
> reliably comment on that. I'd say, try it. If it doesn't work, attach 
> an extra CD-ROM or hard drive or something with MacOS on it 
> and install the firmware with that. But I don't think it'll even be a 
> problem. The ROMs that this thing wants to install on the upgrade 
> card are almost definitely stuff to get AAPL,ROM to recognize it, 
> which is totally unnecessary for NetBSD. Put the card in your 
> machine, and boot to OpenFirmware. Then do dev / ls. If the 
> processor shows up as the right thing (as opposed to as some 
> brand of unknown or as whatever your old processor was), you're 
> probably good to go. No matter what, if it works under MacOS, it 
> is *definitely* possible to get the card to work under NetBSD with 
> only nominal tinkering, so I'd go ahead and order it if you were still 
> holding off.