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1 <?xml version='1.0' encoding="UTF-8"?>
2 <!-- $Header: /var/cvsroot/gentoo/xml/htdocs/doc/en/gentoo-sparc-faq.xml,v 1.15 2007/08/25 09:49:21 neysx Exp $ -->
3
4 <!DOCTYPE guide SYSTEM "/dtd/guide.dtd">
5 <guide link="/doc/en/gentoo-sparc-faq.xml">
6 <title>Gentoo Linux/SPARC Frequently Asked Questions</title>
7
8 <author title="SPARC Developer">
9 <mail link="weeve@gentoo.org">Jason Wever</mail>
10 </author>
11
12 <abstract>
13 This FAQ is designed to help answer the most commonly asked questions about
14 Gentoo Linux/SPARC and Linux on SPARC architecture. Feel free to send
15 revisions and corrections to the sparc team or the doc team.
16 </abstract>
17
18 <!-- The content of this document is licensed under the CC-BY-SA license -->
19 <!-- See http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5 -->
20 <license/>
21
22 <version>1.9</version>
23 <date>2007-06-30</date>
24
25 <faqindex>
26 <title>Questions</title>
27 <section>
28 <title>Documentation Notes</title>
29 <body>
30
31 <p>
32 These are some notes to elaborate on acronyms and terms used in this document.
33 </p>
34
35 <p>
36 When mentioning <c>SPARC</c>, this refers to the type of <c>sun4x</c> system.
37 SPARC represents the <c>sun4u</c> architecture seen in the UltraSPARC series of
38 systems (Ultras, Blades, SunFires, etc). Older 32-bit systems are no longer
39 supported by the Gentoo/SPARC team.
40 </p>
41
42 <p>
43 Acronyms: <c>OBP</c> = OpenBoot PROM, <c>SS</c> = SPARCstation.
44 </p>
45
46 </body>
47 </section>
48 </faqindex>
49
50 <chapter>
51 <title>Installation</title>
52 <section>
53 <title>How do I install/use my SPARC over a serial console?</title>
54 <body>
55
56 <p>
57 First, make sure you do not have a keyboard and monitor plugged in. OBP will
58 use the monitor for output by default if either are plugged in. You will need a
59 null modem cable or a regular serial cable with a null modem adapter to be able
60 to view output.
61 </p>
62
63 <p>
64 Standard serial port settings:
65 </p>
66
67 <ul>
68 <li>9600 baud</li>
69 <li>8 data bits</li>
70 <li>None for parity</li>
71 <li>1 stop bits</li>
72 </ul>
73
74 <p>
75 Below is a list of commonly used programs for viewing a serial console. Check
76 to see if your serial console application has the ability to send a break, as
77 it can be very useful on a SPARC. The break signal on a serial console is the
78 equivalent to issuing the Stop+A command on the keyboard.
79 </p>
80
81 <table>
82 <tr>
83 <th>Linux</th>
84 <th>Windows</th>
85 </tr>
86 <tr>
87 <ti>Minicom</ti>
88 <ti>Hyperterm</ti>
89 </tr>
90 <tr>
91 <ti>Kermit</ti>
92 <ti>TeraTerm Pro</ti>
93 </tr>
94 <tr>
95 <ti>Console</ti>
96 <ti></ti>
97 </tr>
98 <tr>
99 <ti>Seyon</ti>
100 <ti></ti>
101 </tr>
102 </table>
103
104 </body>
105 </section>
106 <!-- sparc32 is no longer supported
107 <section>
108 <title>How do I network boot my SPARC system for installation?</title>
109 <body>
110
111 <p>
112 Currently, Gentoo has experimental network boot/tftpboot images available on a
113 local Gentoo mirror in experimental/sparc/tftpboot. Get the appropriate image
114 for your SPARC computer and then proceed to the Netboot HOWTO for further
115 instructions.
116 </p>
117
118 </body>
119 </section>
120 -->
121 <section>
122 <title>I have a CRT/LCD monitor attached to my SPARC that selects a resolution
123 my monitor can't handle when the kernel boots. How do I get a visible and/or
124 non-distorted display on my monitor?</title>
125 <body>
126
127 <p>
128 This problem is a result of the framebuffer support the Linux kernel loads at
129 boot time, and the modelines available on SPARC systems. Here we will assume
130 your monitor and video card will agree on a resolution of 1024 by 768 at a
131 refresh rate of 60 Hz. In OBP, you can set the resolution by adjusting the
132 setting for <c>output-device</c>. To view the current setting, use the command:
133 </p>
134
135 <pre caption="View current settings">
136 ok <i>printenv output-device</i>
137
138 <comment>&lt;output-device&gt; &lt;screen&gt; &lt;screen&gt;</comment>
139 </pre>
140
141 <p>
142 Now, to set this so it will start the display using the above mentioned
143 resolution, we will use the <c>setenv</c> command as follows:
144 </p>
145
146 <pre caption="Setting display">
147 ok <i>setenv output-device screen:r1024x768x60</i>
148
149 output-device = screen:r1024x768x60
150 </pre>
151
152 <p>
153 In order for this to take effect, you will need to reset the machine:
154 </p>
155
156 <pre caption="Resetting the machine">
157 ok <i>reset</i>
158 </pre>
159
160 <p>
161 Additionally, for users using the onboard video card based on the ATI Mach64
162 chipset (Ultra 5/10 and Blade 100/150), you will want to append the following
163 to your kernel boot options:
164 </p>
165
166 <pre caption="Appending a kernel boot option">
167 video=atyfb:1024x768@60
168 </pre>
169
170 <p>
171 If you are booting from SILO, you can append the above string onto the end of a
172 given boot image. The following example would be if you were booting from the
173 LiveCD.
174 </p>
175
176 <pre caption="Booting a Gentoo LiveCD">
177 boot: <i>gentoo video=atyfb:1024x768@60</i>
178 </pre>
179
180 <p>
181 If you were booting from the network, you would append the string onto the end
182 of the boot net command in OBP as illustrated below:
183 </p>
184
185 <pre caption="Booting from the net">
186 ok <i>boot net video=atyfb:1024x768@60</i>
187 </pre>
188
189 </body>
190 </section>
191 <section>
192 <title>I'm new to SPARC and am not sure what kernel options to use,
193 HELP!</title>
194 <body>
195
196 <p>
197 Most of the time, the default kernel options will be acceptable for hardware
198 support. You will need to make sure that <c>virtual memory</c> and <c>/proc
199 filesystem</c> support is enabled in the kernel as instructed in the <uri
200 link="/doc/en/handbook/handbook-sparc.xml">Installation Handbook</uri>.
201 </p>
202
203 </body>
204 </section>
205 <section>
206 <title>How do I dual boot Gentoo Linux/SPARC with Solaris?</title>
207 <body>
208
209 <p>
210 Dual booting Gentoo Linux/SPARC and Solaris can be done one of two ways. The
211 two ways are: having both Gentoo Linux/SPARC and Solaris on the same drive, or
212 having them on separate drives. Below are example SILO configurations for each
213 scenario. In the example configs, the following things are assumed:
214 </p>
215
216 <p>
217 Single Drive Setup:
218 </p>
219
220 <ul>
221 <li>Boot drive is SCSI ID 0</li>
222 <li>Gentoo boots from partition 1</li>
223 <li>Solaris boots from partition 5</li>
224 </ul>
225
226 <p>
227 Separate 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 <!-- sparc32 is no longer supported
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 <body>
275
276 <p>
277 One possibility has to do with the way the that the SCSI IDs are assigned.
278 Gentoo/SPARC developer Keith Wesolowski provides us with the following:
279 </p>
280
281 <p>
282 Linux, normally, orders devices by SCSI ID. The lowest-numbered disk is
283 <c>sda</c>, the next-lowest is <c>sdb</c>, and so on. Note that <c>devfs</c>
284 allows you to specify devices by SCSI ID, so that adding a new device doesn't
285 cause your existing devices to be renamed, unless of course you use the
286 compatibility names. There are additional ways to solve this.
287 </p>
288
289 <p>
290 The OBP in most or all sun4c and sun4m systems aliases "disk" to the device with
291 SCSI ID 3, and "disk0" through "disk3" to the device with the corresponding SCSI
292 ID, if it happens to be a disk rather than a tape, CDROM, etc.
293 </p>
294
295 <p>
296 In the desktop systems of this era that support two SCA disks (the Aurora
297 chassis systems), the lower slot is assigned SCSI ID 3, and the upper slot is
298 assigned SCSI ID 1.
299 </p>
300
301 <p>
302 If you like, you can change the PROM alias "disk" to match that of "disk1" so
303 that the <c>boot disk</c> command causes the system to boot from the same
304 device Linux calls <c>sda</c>. This feels more consistent and normal,
305 especially for users with a PC background. Alternatively, you can simply place
306 the filesystem containing <path>/boot</path> (which could be the root
307 filesystem or a separate boot filesystem) on device ID 3 (Linux <c>sdb</c>) and
308 boot from it, using a root filesystem on either <c>sda</c> or <c>sdb</c>, or in
309 fact any other disk attached to the system.
310 </p>
311
312 </body>
313 </section>
314 -->
315 </chapter>
316
317 <chapter>
318 <title>Hardware</title>
319 <section>
320 <title>Will Gentoo run on my SPARC?</title>
321 <body>
322
323 <p>
324 It depends on the type of SPARC, but chances are yes. One exception seems to be
325 the SPARC based laptops from Tadpole, particularly the newer models. If you
326 have a working Tadpole on Gentoo/SPARC, please contact us and let us know the
327 details on the model and anything special needed to get it to work.
328 </p>
329
330 <p>
331 The Gentoo/SPARC team maintains a <uri
332 link="/proj/en/base/sparc/sunhw.xml">hardware compatibility list</uri> for
333 SPARC64 systems. In general, support for SPARC64 systems is good enough to
334 allow some users to run it successfully in production environments.
335 </p>
336
337 <p>
338 32-bit SPARC systems are no longer supported by the Gentoo/SPARC team.
339 </p>
340
341 <!-- 32bit is no longer supported
342 <p>
343 32-bit SPARC systems vary. Systems with the sun4m architecture have been
344 reported to work fine (SS4-SS20) including SMP configurations with the later
345 2.4 series kernels. sun4m systems using HyperSPARC or Ross processors in a SMP
346 configuration will have a lot of kernel related trouble. Additionally the
347 author hasn't heard of any user reports in regards to the JavaStations so its
348 status is unknown. sun4d based systems currently do not work in the 2.4 kernel
349 series, and sun4c has been unstable as well.
350 </p>
351
352 <p>
353 Often, the problems encountered in trying to run Gentoo on a 32-bit SPARC
354 system stem from the kernel. Rob Radez (not related to Gentoo) maintains a
355 webpage <uri>http://osinvestor.com/sparc/</uri> with the status of SPARC system
356 support for various versions of the Linux kernel. This can help indicate how
357 usable your SPARC system would be under SPARC/Linux.
358 </p>
359 -->
360
361 </body>
362 </section>
363 <section>
364 <title>What additional hardware is supported under Gentoo/SPARC?</title>
365 <body>
366
367 <p>
368 For a list of additionally supported Sun hardware, consult the following list
369 from the UltraLinux homepage -
370 <uri>http://www.ultralinux.org/faq.html#q_2_2.</uri>
371 </p>
372
373 <p>
374 A partial list of Sun devices which do NOT currently have support under
375 Gentoo/SPARC or SPARC/Linux in general are:
376 </p>
377
378 <ul>
379 <li>SunPCI cards</li>
380 <li>SBUS or PCI PCMCIA controllers</li>
381 <li>Smart card readers on some Sun Blade workstations</li>
382 <li>Floppy drive on some Sun Blade workstations</li>
383 </ul>
384
385 <p>
386 Also, the Gentoo/SPARC team maintains a <uri
387 link="/proj/en/base/sparc/hwlist.xml">list of non-Sun PCI hardware that has
388 been tested on Gentoo/SPARC</uri>. To submit additions to the list, email
389 <mail>sparc@gentoo.org</mail> with the information on the hardware as displayed
390 in the existing hardware list.
391 </p>
392
393 </body>
394 </section>
395 <section>
396 <title>How do I know which Sparc I have?</title>
397 <body>
398
399 <p>
400 The <uri link="http://www.ultralinux.org/faq.html#q_2_1">UltraLinux FAQ</uri>
401 has the answer.
402 </p>
403
404 </body>
405 </section>
406 <section>
407 <title>My box has more than one Sun Ethernet device. Why do they all have the
408 same MAC address and how do I fix it?</title>
409 <body>
410
411 <p>
412 First, the reason they all they all have the same setting is due to a value in
413 OpenBoot PROM (OBP). The story goes that in times past, it was assumed that if a
414 host had multiple interfaces, the interfaces would not reside on the same
415 Ethernet and therefore having the MAC address unique to a machine rather than to
416 a NIC wouldn't be a problem. As time went on and different technologies
417 developed, the opposite was proven.
418 </p>
419
420 <p>
421 As for fixing the issue, there are two ways to it; from OBP and from Linux. The
422 OBP variable <c>local-mac-address?</c> controls this behavior. The following
423 commands will help you to determine what <c>local-mac-address?</c> is set to:
424 </p>
425
426 <pre caption="View local-mac-address? setting from OBP">
427 ok <i>printenv local-mac-address?</i>
428 local-mac-address? = false
429 </pre>
430
431 <pre caption="View local-mac-address? setting from Linux">
432 # <i>eeprom local-mac-address?</i>
433 local-mac-address?=false
434 </pre>
435
436 <p>
437 As you'll notice from the samples above, <c>local-mac-address?</c> is set to
438 <b>false</b>. This will cause all interfaces on a SPARC to use the same MAC
439 address. To change this behavior, use either of the commands below (depending
440 on whether you do it from OBP or Linux):
441 </p>
442
443 <pre caption="Set local-mac-address? from OBP">
444 ok <i>setenv local-mac-address?=true</i>
445 local-mac-address? = true
446 </pre>
447
448 <pre caption="Set local-mac-address? from Linux">
449 # <i>eeprom local-mac-address?=true</i>
450 </pre>
451
452 <p>
453 Note that you may need to reboot to see the changes take affect.
454 </p>
455
456 </body>
457 </section>
458 </chapter>
459
460 <chapter>
461 <title>Applications</title>
462 <section>
463 <title>
464 How do I get Xorg to find a usable modeline on my Ultra 5/10 or Blade 100/150?
465 </title>
466 <body>
467
468 <p>
469 The ATI Framebuffer normally expects a PC's BIOS to set the Reference Clock
470 speed for the video card. However, on non-x86 architectures, this doesn't
471 happen. So what needs to be done is to set the Reference Clock speed in the
472 <path>/etc/X11/xorg.conf</path>.
473 </p>
474
475 <p>
476 In the "Device" section of your <path>/etc/X11/xorg.conf</path>, you will
477 want to add a line similar to the following:
478 </p>
479
480 <pre caption="Add to xorg.conf">
481 Option "reference_clock" "28.636 MHz"
482 </pre>
483
484 <p>
485 Other common speeds are 14.318 MHz and 29.5 MHz. If you have issues you might
486 want to try without a similar setting first.
487 </p>
488
489 </body>
490 </section>
491 <section>
492 <title>How come package foo is masked on Sparc?</title>
493 <body>
494
495 <p>
496 Chances are this is due to the fact that none of the Gentoo/SPARC developers
497 have gotten around to testing this yet, and/or the package is currently marked
498 with the <c>~sparc</c> keyword (meaning it's in a testing phase).
499 </p>
500
501 <p>
502 If you still want to install the package, you can follow the instructions from
503 the <uri link="/doc/en/handbook/handbook-sparc.xml?part=3&amp;chap=3">Portage
504 Handbook</uri>.
505 </p>
506
507 </body>
508 </section>
509 <section>
510 <title>How can I help get package foo marked stable?</title>
511 <body>
512
513 <p>
514 If you want to help ensure a package gets marked stable in a timely fashion,
515 particularly if it's an application with a small userbase (i.e.
516 net-im/bitlbee), install the package and test to make sure it works. If it
517 appears to be working well, feel free to file a bug at
518 <uri>http://bugs.gentoo.org</uri> and assign it to the Gentoo/SPARC team.
519 </p>
520
521 </body>
522 </section>
523 <section>
524 <title>I tried to emerge a package, but emerge failed complaining that a
525 dependency is masked. How can I fix this?</title>
526 <body>
527
528 <p>
529 This is a bug. Please file a bug report at <uri>http://bugs.gentoo.org</uri>
530 for the Gentoo/SPARC team indicating what package you tried to emerge, the
531 error message emerge gave you, and the output of <c>emerge --info</c>.
532 </p>
533
534 </body>
535 </section>
536 </chapter>
537
538 <chapter>
539 <title>Miscellaneous</title>
540 <section>
541 <title>I'm interested in becoming more involved with Gentoo/SPARC. How do I go about
542 doing that?</title>
543 <body>
544
545 <p>
546 The best way is to join the <c>#gentoo-sparc</c> IRC channel on Freenode IRC
547 network <c>irc.freenode.net</c>. This is where all of the developers hang out
548 and talk SPARC (amongst other things). Short of email, this is the best way to
549 get our attention.
550 </p>
551
552 <p>
553 Also, many users and developers make use of the <uri
554 link="http://forums.gentoo.org/viewforum.php?f=27">Gentoo/SPARC forum</uri>.
555 This is a good place to ask questions and see what problems have come up
556 before, as well as talk shop about Gentoo/SPARC.
557 </p>
558
559 <p>
560 Additionally, you can view the bugs for Gentoo/SPARC via the <uri
561 link="http://bugs.gentoo.org">Gentoo Bugzilla</uri>. The bugs will be assigned
562 or CCed to sparc@gentoo.org.
563 </p>
564
565 </body>
566 </section>
567 <section>
568 <title>Are there any currently known bugs/issues with software packages on
569 Gentoo/SPARC?</title>
570 <body>
571
572 <p>
573 A list of problematic packages can be found at
574 <uri>http://dev.gentoo.org/~weeve/problems.html</uri>.
575 </p>
576
577 </body>
578 </section>
579 </chapter>
580
581 <chapter>
582 <title>Additional Resources</title>
583 <section>
584 <body>
585
586 <p>
587 Here is some info on the Gentoo/SPARC project itself:
588 </p>
589
590 <ul>
591 <li><uri link="http://sparc.gentoo.org">Gentoo/SPARC Project Page</uri></li>
592 <li>#gentoo-sparc - Official IRC channel on irc.freenode.net</li>
593 <li>
594 <uri link="http://forums.gentoo.org/viewforum.php?f=27">Gentoo/SPARC
595 Forum</uri>
596 </li>
597 <li><mail>sparc@gentoo.org</mail> - Gentoo/SPARC team email address</li>
598 </ul>
599
600 <p>
601 Here are links to additional information about SPARC/Linux or SPARCs in general:
602 </p>
603
604 <ul>
605 <li>
606 <uri link="http://www.ultralinux.org">UltraLinux Homepage</uri> - Homepage
607 of the SPARC/Linux port
608 </li>
609 <li>
610 <uri link="http://sunsolve.sun.com">Sunsolve</uri> - Great resource for Sun
611 hardware documentation
612 </li>
613 <li>
614 <uri>http://docs.sun.com</uri> - Additional hardware and software
615 information for SPARC systems, including instructions for flashing OBP
616 </li>
617 <li>
618 <uri link="http://www.obsolyte.com">Obsolyte</uri> - Information on older
619 SPARC systems and links to a lot of other great SPARC related sites
620 </li>
621 <li>
622 <uri
623 link="http://040.digital-bless.com/texts/Unofficial_Sun_Blade_100_FAQ.htm">Unofficial
624 Sun Blade 100 FAQ</uri> - Answers a lot of hardware related questions on
625 the Blade 100
626 </li>
627 <li>
628 <uri link="http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/coll/216.2">OBP Reference
629 Guide</uri> - Sun's guide to the OpenBoot PROM
630 </li>
631 </ul>
632
633 </body>
634 </section>
635 </chapter>
636 </guide>

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