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#37231 - Adding Gentoo/SPARC FAQ

1 swift 1.1 <?xml version='1.0' encoding="UTF-8"?>
2     <!DOCTYPE guide SYSTEM "/dtd/guide.dtd">
3     <guide link="sparcfaq.xml">
4     <title>Gentoo Linux/SPARC Frequently Asked Questions</title>
5    
6     <author title="SPARC Developer">
7     <mail link="weeve@gentoo.org">Jason Wever</mail>
8     </author>
9    
10     <abstract>
11     This FAQ is designed to help answer the most commonly asked
12     questions about Gentoo Linux/SPARC and Linux on SPARC architecture.
13     Feel free to send revisions and corrections to the sparc team or the
14     doc team.
15     </abstract>
16     <!-- The content of this document is licensed under the CC-BY-SA license -->
17     <!-- See http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/1.0 -->
18     <license/>
19     <version>1.0</version>
20     <date>April 11, 2004</date>
21    
22     <chapter>
23     <title>Documentation Notes</title>
24     <section>
25     <body>
26    
27     <p>
28     These are some notes to elaborate on acronyms and terms used in this document.
29     </p>
30    
31     <p>
32     When mentioning "SPARC and SPARC64", this refers to the type of sun4x system.
33     SPARC represents the 32 bit systems using the sun4c, sun4d and sun4m
34     architectures (i.e. SPARCstations). SPARC64 represents the sun4u architecture
35     seen in the UltraSPARC series of systems (Ultras, Blades, SunFires, etc).
36     </p>
37    
38     <note>
39     Acronyms: OBP = OpenBoot PROM, SS = SPARCstation
40     </note>
41    
42     <p>
43     The most frequently asked question we get is "Hey, foo is broken, who can I
44     blame?" After much discussion on how to handle this, we arrived at an answer.
45     Blame Seemant! Why blame Seemant you ask? Just look at
46     <uri>http://www.blameseemant.tk</uri> and it should make it clear :)
47     </p>
48    
49     </body>
50     </section>
51     </chapter>
52    
53     <chapter>
54     <title>Installation</title>
55     <section>
56     <title>How do I install/use my SPARC over a serial console?</title>
57     <body>
58    
59     <p>
60     First, make sure you do not have a keyboard and monitor plugged in. OBP will
61     use the monitor for output by default if either are plugged in. You will need
62     a null modem cable or a regular serial cable with a null modem adapter to be
63     able to view output.
64     </p>
65    
66     <p>
67     Standard serial port settings
68     </p>
69    
70     <ul>
71     <li>9600 baud</li>
72     <li>8 data bits</li>
73     <li>None for parity</li>
74     <li>1 stop bits</li>
75     </ul>
76    
77     <p>
78     Below is a list of commonly used programs for viewing a serial console. Check
79     to see if your serial console application has the ability to send a break, as
80     it can be very useful on a SPARC. The break signal on a serial console is the equivalent to issuing the Stop+A command on the keyboard.
81     </p>
82    
83     <table>
84     <tr><th>Linux</th><th>Windows</th></tr>
85     <tr><ti>Minicom</ti><ti>Hyperterm</ti></tr>
86     <tr><ti>Kermit</ti><ti>TeraTerm Pro</ti></tr>
87     <tr><ti>Console</ti></tr>
88     <tr><ti>Seyon</ti></tr>
89     </table>
90    
91     </body>
92     </section>
93    
94     <section>
95     <title>How do I network boot my SPARC system for installation?</title>
96     <body>
97    
98     <p>
99     Currently, Gentoo has experimental network boot/tftpboot images available
100     on a local Gentoo mirror in experimental/sparc/tftpboot. Get the appropriate
101     image for your SPARC computer and then proceed to the Netboot HOWTO for
102     further instructions.
103     </p>
104     </body>
105     </section>
106    
107     <section>
108     <title>I have a CRT/LCD monitor attached to my SPARC that selects a resolution
109     my monitor can't handle when the kernel boots. How do I get a visible and/or
110     non-distorted display on my monitor?</title>
111     <body>
112    
113     <p>
114     This problem is a result of the framebuffer support the Linux kernel loads
115     at boot time, and the modelines available on SPARC systems.
116    
117     Here we will assume your monitor and video card will agree on a resolution of
118     1024 by 768 at a refresh rate of 60 Hz.
119    
120     In OBP, you can set the resolution by adjusting the setting for output-device.
121     To view the current setting, use the command:
122     </p>
123    
124     <pre caption="View current settings">
125     ok <i>printenv output-device</i>
126    
127     <comment>&lt;output-device&gt; &lt;screen&gt; &lt;screen&gt;</comment>
128     </pre>
129    
130     <p>
131     Now, to set this so it will start the display using the above mentioned
132     resolution, we will use the setenv command as follows;
133     </p>
134    
135     <pre caption="Setting display">
136     ok <i>setenv output-device screen:r1024x768x60</i>
137    
138     output-device = screen:r1024x768x60
139     </pre>
140    
141     <p>
142     In order for this to take effect, you will need to reset the machine;
143     </p>
144    
145     <pre caption="Resetting the machine">
146     ok <i>reset</i>
147     </pre>
148    
149     <p>
150     Additionally, for users using the onboard video card based on the ATI Mach64
151     chipset (Ultra 5/10 and Blade 100/150), you will want to append the following
152     to your kernel boot option;
153     </p>
154    
155     <pre caption="Appending to the kernel boot option">
156     video=atyfb:1024x768@60
157     </pre>
158    
159     <p>
160     If you are booting from SILO, you can append the above string onto the end
161     of a given boot image. The following example would be if you were booting
162     from the LiveCD.
163     </p>
164    
165     <pre caption="Booting a Gentoo LiveCD">
166     boot: <i>gentoo video=atyfb:1024x768@60</i>
167     </pre>
168    
169     <p>
170     If you were booting from the network, you would append the string onto the
171     end of the boot net command in OBP as illustrated below;
172     </p>
173    
174     <pre caption="Booting from the net">
175     ok <i>boot net video=atyfb:1024x768@60</i>
176     </pre>
177    
178     </body>
179     </section>
180    
181     <section>
182     <title>I'm new to SPARC and am not sure what kernel options to use,
183     HELP!</title>
184     <body>
185    
186     <p>
187     Most of the time, the default kernel options will be acceptable for hardware
188     support. You will need to make sure that devfs and virtual memory filesystem
189     support is enabled in the kernel as instructed in the Installation Handbook.
190     </p>
191    
192     <p>
193     Additionally, Gentoo/SPARC developer Ciaran McCreesh maintains a collection
194     of kernel configuration files for various SPARC systems at
195     <uri>http://dev.gentoo.org/~ciaranm/configs/kernel/</uri>. Feel free to submit kernel configuration files for any SPARC systems and/or kernel versions not currently avaiable to <mail link="ciaranm@gentoo.org">ciaranm@gentoo.org</mail>
196     </p>
197    
198     </body>
199     </section>
200    
201     <section>
202     <title>How do I dual boot Gentoo Linux/SPARC with Solaris?</title>
203    
204     <body>
205    
206     <p>
207     Dual booting Gentoo Linux/SPARC and Solaris can be done one of two ways. The
208     two ways are having both Gentoo Linux/SPARC and Solaris on the same drive, or
209     having them on seperate drives.
210    
211     Below are example SILO configurations for each scenario. In the example
212     configs, the following things are assumed;
213     </p>
214    
215     <p>
216     Single Drive Setup
217     </p>
218    
219     <ul>
220     <li>Boot drive is SCSI ID 0</li>
221     <li>Gentoo boots from partition 1</li>
222     <li>Solaris boots from parition 5</li>
223     </ul>
224    
225    
226     <p>
227     Seperate Drive Setup
228     </p>
229    
230     <ul>
231     <li>Second drive is SCSI ID 1</li>
232     <li>Gentoo is on SCSI ID 0</li>
233     <li>Solaris is on SCSI ID 1</li>
234     <li>boot-device in OBP is SCSI ID 0</li>
235     </ul>
236    
237    
238     <pre caption="Sample silo.conf for a single drive installation">
239     <comment># Generic config options</comment>
240     partition = 1
241     timeout = 50
242    
243     <comment># Gentoo Linux/SPARC options</comment>
244     image = /boot/vmlinux
245     label = linux
246     root=/dev/sda4
247    
248     <comment># Solaris options</comment>
249     other=5
250     label = Solaris
251     </pre>
252    
253     <pre caption="Sample silo.conf for separate disk installation">
254     <comment># Generic config options</comment>
255     parition = 1
256     timeout = 50
257    
258     <comment># Gentoo Linux/SPARC options</comment>
259     image = /boot/vmlinux
260     label = linux
261     root=/dev/sda4
262    
263     <comment># Solaris options</comment>
264     other = /sbus/espdma/esp/sd@1,0;1
265     label = solaris
266     </pre>
267    
268     </body>
269     </section>
270    
271     <section>
272     <title>I just booted my SPARCstation after installing Gentoo but it won't boot.
273     Why isn't it booting?</title>
274    
275     <body>
276    
277     <p>
278     One possibility has to do with the way the that the SCSI IDs are assigned.
279     Gentoo/SPARC developer Keith Wesolowski provides us with the following;
280     </p>
281    
282     <p>
283     Linux, normally, orders devices by SCSI ID. The lowest-numbered disk
284     is sda, the next-lowest is sdb, and so on. Note that devfs allows you
285     to specify devices by SCSI ID, so that adding a new device doesn't
286     cause your existing devices to be renamed, unless of course you use
287     the compatibility names. There are additional ways to solve this.
288     </p>
289    
290     <p>
291     The OBP in most or all sun4c and sun4m systems aliases "disk" to the
292     device with SCSI ID 3, and "disk0" through "disk3" to the device with
293     = the corresponding SCSI ID, if it happens to be a disk rather than a
294     tape, CDROM, etc.
295     </p>
296    
297     <p>
298     In the desktop systems of this era that support two SCA disks (the
299     Aurora chassis systems), the lower slot is assigned SCSI ID 3, and the
300     upper slot is assigned SCSI ID 1.
301     </p>
302    
303     <p>
304     If you like, you can change the PROM alias "disk" to match that of
305     "disk1" so that the "boot disk" command causes the system to boot from
306     the same device Linux calls sda. This feels more consistent and
307     normal, especially for users with a PC background. Alternately, you
308     can simply place the filesystem containing /boot (which could be the
309     root filesystem or a separate boot filesystem) on device ID 3 (Linux
310     sdb) and boot from it, using a root filesystem on either sda or sdb,
311     or in fact any other disk attached to the system.
312     </p>
313    
314     </body>
315     </section>
316     </chapter>
317    
318     <chapter>
319     <title>Hardware</title>
320    
321     <section>
322     <title>Will Gentoo run on my SPARC?</title>
323    
324     <body>
325     <p>
326     It depends on the type of SPARC, but chances are yes. One exception seems to
327     be the SPARC based laptops from Tadpole, particularly the newer models. If
328     you have a working Tadpole on Gentoo/SPARC, please contact us and let us know
329     the details on the model and anything special needed to get it to work.
330     </p>
331     <p>
332     Gentoo/SPARC Developer Todd Sunderlin keeps a partial list of the status of
333     SPARC64 systems under Gentoo at <uri>http://dev.gentoo.org/~todd/sparc64.html</uri>. Email him with any additions or possible changes to <mail link="todd@gentoo.org">todd@gentoo.org</mail>.
334     </p>
335    
336     <p>
337     To add details on your model SPARC64 to the list, email todd@gentoo.org with
338     the pertinant information. In general, support for the SPARC64 systems is
339     good enough to allow some users to run it successfully in production
340     environments.
341     </p>
342    
343     <p>
344     32-bit SPARC systems vary. Systems with the sun4m architecture have been
345     reported to work fine (SS4 - SS20) including SMP configurations with the later
346     2.4 series kernels. sun4m systems using HyperSPARC or Ross processors in a
347     SMP configuration will have a lot of kernel related trouble. Additionally
348     the author hasn't heard of any user reports in regards to the Java-stations so
349     its status is unknown. sun4d based systems currently do not work in the 2.4
350     kernel series, and sun4c has been unstable as well.
351     </p>
352    
353     <p>
354     Often, the problems encountered in trying to run Gentoo on a 32-bit SPARC
355     system stem from the kernel. Rob Radez (no relation to Gentoo) maintains a
356     webpage <uri>http://osinvestor.com/sparc/</uri> with the status of SPARC system support
357     for various versions of the Linux kernel. This can help indicate how usable
358     your SPARC system would be under SPARC/Linux.
359     </p>
360     </body>
361     </section>
362    
363     <section>
364     <title>What additional hardware is supported under Gentoo/SPARC?</title>
365    
366     <body>
367     <p>
368     For a list of additionally supported Sun hardware, consult the following list
369     from the UltraLinux homepage - <uri>http://www.ultralinux.org/faq.html#q_2_2.</uri>
370     </p>
371    
372     <p>
373     A partial list of Sun devices which do NOT currently have support under
374     Gentoo/SPARC or SPARC/Linux in general are:
375     </p>
376    
377     <ul>
378     <li>SunPCI cards</li>
379     <li>SBUS or PCI PCMCIA controllers</li>
380     <li>Smart card readers on some Sun Blade workstations</li>
381     <li>Floppy drive on some Sun Blade workstations</li>
382     </ul>
383    
384     <p>
385     Also, Gentoo/SPARC developer Sven Blumenstein keeps a list of PC hardware
386     that has been tested with the PCI based SPARC64 systems at
387     <uri>http://dev.gentoo.org/~bazik/hw.php</uri>. Feel free to add your results at testing PC or non-Sun hardware to the list by emailing <mail link="bazik@gentoo.org">bazik@gentoo.org</mail> with the information on the hardware as displayed in the existing hardware list.
388     </p>
389    
390     </body>
391     </section>
392    
393     <section>
394     <title>So you keep talking about sun4c/sun4d/sun4m/sun4u. How do I know which one I have?</title>
395     <body>
396    
397     <p>The UltraLinux FAQ has the answer at <uri>http://www.ultralinux.org/faq.html#q_2_1</uri>
398     </p>
399    
400     </body>
401     </section>
402     </chapter>
403    
404     <chapter>
405     <title>Applications</title>
406    
407     <section>
408     <title>
409     How do I get XFree86 to find a usable modeline on my Ultra 5/10 or Blade
410     100/150?
411     </title>
412     <body>
413     <p>
414     The ATI Framebuffer normally expects a PC's BIOS to set the Reference Clock
415     speed for the video card. However, on non-x86 architectures, this doesn't
416     happen. So what needs to be done is to set the Reference Clock speed in the
417     XF86Config file.
418     </p>
419    
420     <p>
421     In the "Device" section of your XF86Config file, you will want to add a line
422     similar to the following;
423     </p>
424    
425     <pre caption="Add to XF86Config">
426     Option "reference_clock" "28.636 MHz"
427     </pre>
428    
429     <p>
430     The following URLs contain more information on how to set the reference clock:
431     <uri>http://www.xfree86.org/~dawes/4.3.0/ati5.html#26</uri>
432     </p>
433    
434     </body>
435     </section>
436     <section>
437     <title>How come package foo is masked on Sparc?</title>
438    
439     <body>
440     <p>Chances are, this is due to the fact that none of the Gentoo/SPARC developers
441     have gotten around to testing this yet, and/or the package is currently
442     marked with the ~sparc keyword (meaning it's in a testing phase).
443     </p>
444    
445     <p>
446     If you still want to install the package, you can follow the instructions from
447     the Portage Masked Package FAQ at
448     <uri>http://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic.php?t=33534</uri>.
449     </p>
450    
451     <note>
452     The FAQ mentions the sparc64 keyword, which is invalid.
453     </note>
454    
455     </body>
456     </section>
457    
458     <section>
459     <title>How can I help get package foo marked stable?</title>
460     <body>
461     <p>
462     If you want to help ensure a package gets marked stable in a timely fashion,
463     particularly if it's an application with a small userbase (i.e.
464     net-im/bitlbee), install the package and test to make sure it works. If it
465     appears to be working well, feel free to file a bug at <uri>http://bugs.gentoo.org</uri> and assign it to the Gentoo/SPARC team.</p>
466     </body>
467     </section>
468    
469     <section>
470     <title>I tried to emerge a package, but emerge failed complaining that a dependency
471     is masked. How can I fix this?</title>
472     <body>
473     <p>
474     This is a bug. Please file a bug report at <uri>http://bugs.gentoo.org</uri> for the Gentoo/SPARC team indicating what package you tried to emerge, the error message emerge gave you, and the output of emerge info.</p>
475     </body>
476     </section>
477     </chapter>
478    
479     <chapter>
480     <title>Misc</title>
481    
482     <section>
483     <title>I'm interested in becoming more involved with Gentoo/SPARC. How do I go about
484     doing that?</title>
485    
486     <body>
487    
488     <p>
489     The best way is to join the #gentoo-sparc IRC channel on Freenode IRC network
490     irc.freenode.net. This is where all of the developers hang out and talk
491     SPARC (amongst other things). Short of email, this is the best way to get
492     our attention, and blame seemant! :)
493     </p>
494     <p>
495     Also, many users and developers make use of the <uri link="http://forums.gentoo.org/viewforum.php?f=27">Gentoo/SPARC forum</uri>. This is a good place to ask questions and see what problems have come up before, as well as talk shop
496     about Gentoo/SPARC.
497     </p>
498     <p>
499     Additionally, you can view the bugs for Gentoo/SPARC via the <uri link="http://bugs.gentoo.org">Gentoo Bugzilla</uri>. The bugs will be assigned or CC'd to sparc@gentoo.org.
500     </p>
501     </body>
502     </section>
503    
504     <section>
505     <title>Are there any currently known bugs/issues with software packages on
506     Gentoo/SPARC?</title>
507     <body>
508     <p>
509     A list of problematic packages can be found at
510     <uri>http://dev.gentoo.org/~weeve/problems.html</uri>
511     </p>
512     </body>
513     </section>
514     </chapter>
515    
516    
517     <chapter>
518    
519     <title>Additional Resources</title>
520     <section><body>
521     <p>Here is some info on the Gentoo/SPARC project itself.
522     </p>
523     <p>
524     <uri link="http://sparc.gentoo.org">Gentoo/SPARC Project Page</uri>
525     </p>
526     <p>#gentoo-sparc - Official IRC channel on irc.freenode.net
527     </p>
528     <p>
529     <uri link="http://forums.gentoo.org/viewforum.php?f=27">Gentoo/SPARC Forum</uri>
530     </p>
531     <p>
532     <mail>sparc@gentoo.org</mail> - Gentoo/SPARC team email address
533     </p>
534     <p>Here are links to additional information about SPARC/Linux or SPARCs in general
535     </p>
536     <p>
537     <uri link="http://www.ultralinux.org">UltraLinux Homepage</uri> - Homepage of the SPARC/Linux port
538     </p>
539     <p>
540     <uri link="http://sunsolve.sun.com">Sunsolve</uri> - Great resource for Sun hardware documentation
541     </p>
542     <p>
543     <uri>http://docs.sun.com</uri> - Additional hardware and software information for SPARC systems, including instructions for flashing OBP
544     </p>
545     <p><uri link="http://www.obsolyte.com">Obsolyte</uri> - Information on older SPARC systems and links to a lot of other great SPARC related sites.
546     </p>
547     <p>
548     <uri link="http://040.digital-bless.com/texts/Unofficial_Sun_Blade_100_FAQ.htm">Unofficial Sun Blade 100 FAQ</uri> - Answers a lot of hardware related questions on the Blade 100
549     </p>
550     <p>
551     <uri link="http://docs.sun.com/db/coll/216.2">OBP Reference Guide</uri> - Sun's guide to the OpenBoot PROM.
552     </p>
553    
554     </body>
555     </section>
556     </chapter>
557     </guide>

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