Subject: Re: Still a problem in booting from floppy
To: Lehle Wolf <>
From: Chuck McManis <>
List: port-vax
Date: 06/09/1999 09:50:25
miniroot.fs is a bootable image, it is in 512 byte blocks. You can write it
to a DOS formatted 1.44MB 3.5" disk (RX33 in DEC parlance) but only an
RQDX3 will be able to read it. RAWRITE.EXE destroys the DOS formatting so
be aware of that. 

Installing from RX50's should be possible if the NetBSD/vax group goes to a
three stage boot. RX50 #1 has a program to load/concatenate RX50's 2 thru
n, which then boot into a ram disk style environment. Its a lot of work
however and probably won't get done as long as netbooting is as easy as it is.

My uVAX III now has a dedicted 100Mhz Pentium running FreeBSD as its
"console processor", I bought it for $25 at a garage sale (540MB IDE drive,
2x CD-ROM, 16MB RAM, whee!) this works pretty well. (oh and I paid $15 for
two ISA ethernet NICs so I guess I've got $40 into it now)


At 08:16 AM 6/9/99 +0200, you wrote:
>Thank you very much for your quick respond, but ...
>Here is the part of the installtion description:
>Fetch the bootable miniroot image from 
>             .../NetBSD-1.4/vax/miniroot/miniroot.gz{50,33} 
>      and gunzip it. It is a 1.2MB bootable image that will boot from any
>floppy of size 1.2MB and bigger. Note that you cannot install from RX50
>floppies due to the small size. This may change in the
>      future. 
>      All floppies except RX50 uses a standardized format for storing data
>so writing the miniroot to the floppy can be done on any PC. From DOS the
>preferred way to do this is using RAWRITE.EXE.
>If I interpret it correctly, this means one can use any floppy, which has
>enough capacity of holding the 1.2MB boot file (includes my 1.44 MB
>DOS-formatted one) !
>But there's also something wrong with this description: There's no
>.../NetBSD-1.4/vax/miniroot/miniroot.gz. Instead you find there a
>"miniroot.fs", which is also used for booting from a tape (Unfortunaltely I
>don't own one). In spite of that, I think the file may be used for booting
>from a floppy.