No, I don't want to start another religious "What Distro is best" thread. I'm looking for ANY distro that will work on this setup. Please read the entire post before posting a reply, as I may have already tried your suggestion.
First, here's the specs on some old boxes we have at work:
Pentium Pro 200 MHz
96 MB RAM
Onboard VGA Video Card
2 GB SCSI Hard Drive
12x SCSI CD-ROM
The SCSI Controller resides in a PCI slot. It has its own BIOS-space utility that can be disabled.
Even when disabled, it appears that it "tricks" systems into thinking the SCSI drives are IDE. So no problem, right? Just install any streamlined distro as if it were IDE. Wrong. :[
EVERY distro I have tried fails in one way or another. ISOLINUX based boot CDs fail because after reading the boot information from the CD, they can't find the CD-ROM drive afterwards. SYSLINUX fails in a different way depending on the distro. Boot floppies fail at some stage or another, even floppies geared towards SCSI devices.
Before the list of distros I've tried, please note the following:
1) I always check the md5sum to see if the iso is correct.
2) Assume there is nothing wrong with the installation media (I verify and don't use CD-RWs).
3) I try to be very thorough when I try these things. If I say something didn't work, I tried it more than once, sometimes even re-creating the media necessary, just for voodoo charm.
4) If you need more information than what I give, ask and I will probably have a quick answer for you. If I don't, I'll try whatever you suggest and get back to you.
Here is a list of distros I have tried and what went wrong...
1) DamnSmallLinux: Cannot boot from CD, and also see http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...d.php?t=478201
(fyi: this happens even when I don't try the poorman's install)
2) DSL-N 0.1RC4: Cannot boot from CD, Boot Floppy fails to boot, gives no really good reason why ("Boot failed.")
3) Vector Linux 5.1 Standard: SCSI boot floppy fails to find drives, cannot boot from CD
4) Puppy Linux: Cannot boot using any method prescribed on the Puppy Linux site
These are the four I have tried so far. I'm willing to try ANY distribution that is streamlined and full-featured enough to be used for a run-of-the-mill workstation. The ability to use smbfs or a similar utility is a must, as is the ability to read NFS'. (Is there a distro that can't?)
I'll try anything. Lead me!