Subject: Re: Booting NetBSD-alpha
To: None <mtaylor@CYBERNET.COM>
From: None <Chris_G_Demetriou@NIAGARA.NECTAR.CS.CMU.EDU>
List: port-alpha
Date: 02/29/1996 16:20:08
Andrew Gallatin said:
> Mark J. Taylor writes:
>  > Now I've got to teach the ARC BIOS how to start off of this disk.
>  > I've got no idea how to do this.  All of the environment variables in
>  > the ARC BIOS were set using a 'magic Windows/NT installation mantra'.
>  > 
>  > Is there ANY hope of setting up a set of ARC BIOS environment variables
>  > to get NetBSD to boot?  I've read all of the docs/READMEs that come with
> No.  You need to switch to the SRM console. [ ... ]

Andrew's statement about the need to switch to the SRM console was
100% correct, and i think his instructions on how to do it (on systems
that support the SRM console) were right as well.

> If you don't have a machine capable of running the SRM console, I
> think you're out of luck..  It would be really nice if somebody had
> the time, knowledge and hardware to implement something like Linux's
> milo boot loader for NetBSD so that NetBSD wasn't dependant on the SRM
> console..

I agree with this.

It's an _awful_ lot of work (note that Linux actually had DEC
engineers working on the Alpha support)...  A fair start, e.g. much of
the PALcode that DEC released, is in the MILO code.

I really wish that DEC would just ship SRM console on all of their
alphas...  It _really_ wouldn't be that hard, and Linux wants to use
the interfaces it provides, as well...