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Forcing a serial console for the kernel

Is it possible to force a serial console for the install kernel available in*/binary/kernel/netbsd- INSTALL.gz ?

At the boot prompt defining consdev does not seem to have any affect.

The particular machine is several thousand miles away, so I do not have access to
a floppy or cd drive.

For a kernel that I've built, if I've set the option:

options        CONSDEVNAME="\"com\"",CONADDR=0x2f8,CONSPEED=9600

Is there anything else I need to use? Shouldn't setting consdev at the boot prompt allow any kernel with com support to redirect to the serial port anyway?

I've also looked using the new boot.cfg file and also installboot, but there does not see to be a well documented method for setting up serial console support.

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