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It sucks! I want no more!

15.08.2009 by tg@
Tags: bug event hardware rant snapshot

You all know that the sparc (demo) freezed on me. Well, the VT420 only emitted “Keyboard Error 4”, I tried the other sparc (ss20/marc). Also equipped with one of these 36G LVD/SE U160 SCA HDDs, it exploded. Literally. Something – I still don’t know what (smells in the area of the tvtwo(4/sparc) and le(4/sparc) but…) as this happened during the installation, which continued as if nothing had happened, except that, a minute after the explosive sound, it begun to smell. *sigh*

Me then go back to demo, even put in the tvtwo(4/sparc) for monitor/keyboard console (sucky German keyboard, but after installing kbd(8) works), use the Stop-N trick (hold it down and power on) to erase the PROM (thanks NetBSD® FAQ, no thanks to the people in #sparc in IRC who suggested Stop-A) to switch from serial to k/m console, then it installed… and froze.

To add insult to injury (luckily not mine), the VT420 works again.

I tried hard to get you at least a minimal set of binary packages – gmake (so it’s self-hosted), lzma (for *.clz binary package support), screen (because people need it), jupp (vi(1) is in base, but no editor other than ed(1)…), rsync (even though it’s now GPLv3, we depend on it heavily) – but just could not, no matter how hard.

On the other front, after re-doing the installer a few times due to some fuckup in install.sub (don’t ask, but I really extracted the image from the symbol-less kernel and put it back afterwards…), a number of core packages for i386 were built, and bsiegert@ is supplying another few hundred. Yay!

I’ll still follow the plan to create the FrOSCon ISO tomorrow, will add a minimal set of i386 packages plus their distfiles where licences require it, and refer people to the online repository. I cannot add any “real” sparc packages, so there will be none. I’m tempted to modify the sparc installer by image extraction too, since the mount_mfs(8) fails when the box has too much RAM (more than about 300 MiB), but don’t want to power on one of these boxen and lose even more time (if not body or possession).

qemu is getting better at emulating a sparc, but we still cannot go to user space. ☹


If someone is really interested in getting MirOS working on boxen compatible to the SheevaPlug (ARM 1.2 GHz), despite our rather old gcc and binutils, please contact us. I’d drop sparc support over it once working.


See you all kissing the blue frog, but remember, don’t kiss a porc. You can read the advertisement or the flyers (German, English or French) meanwhile.

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