Linux - NewbieThis Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question?
If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!
Welcome to LinuxQuestions.org, a friendly and active Linux Community.
You are currently viewing LQ as a guest. By joining our community you will have the ability to post topics, receive our newsletter, use the advanced search, subscribe to threads and access many other special features. Registration is quick, simple and absolutely free. Join our community today!
Note that registered members see fewer ads, and ContentLink is completely disabled once you log in.
If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us. If you need to reset your password, click here.
Having a problem logging in? Please visit this page to clear all LQ-related cookies.
Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide
This guide was created as an overview of the Linux Operating System, geared toward new users as an exploration tour and getting started guide, with exercises at the end of each chapter.
For more advanced trainees it can be a desktop reference, and a collection of the base knowledge needed to proceed with system and network administration. This book contains many real life examples derived from the author's experience as a Linux system and network administrator, trainer and consultant. They hope these examples will help you to get a better understanding of the Linux system and that you feel encouraged to try out things on your own.
Click Here to receive this Complete Guide absolutely free.
Here's my situation: I have a Windows Terminal Server deployment and all of my end-users use thin clients. Basically, the thin clients boot to the network, download a Linux image to RAM (totally diskless). Then linux boots which then automagically starts rdesktop that connects to my Windows Terminal Services cluster. It's a little Rube Goldberg'esque but it actually works extremely well and is A LOT cheaper than Citrix. I would be happy to explain it in greater detail if anyone is interested.
However, the problem is that the linux image that gets downloaded to the thin client doesn't really support newer hardware. All of my end-users use dual monitors and right now the only video card I can use is nvidia because that's what the linux image supports. I'm also running into hardware limitations. I can build a super-cheap dual monitor thin clients using off-the-shelf parts for <$200 but there's no telling if my linux image is going to support the hardware.
So basically, I need to know how to add drivers to this existing linux image. I've found plenty of tutorials on adding drivers to a existing Linux installation (like if it was installed and running on the hard drive) but that doesn't really help me. I've also found tutorials on mounting/opening the initrd.img, but that's as far as the tutorials get; they generally conclude with "now you can edit your initrd file!" or something like that.
Specifically, I need to add NIC and Intel Graphics drivers to this initrd.img file. The linux kernel is 2.6.15-52 and it's Debian based.
So far as I can recall, it is enough to copy the new kernel modules to the right places under the extracted directory tree, and recompress the image by mkinitrd.
I think the new kernel modules (.ko, .ka, etc. files) should be compiled, and mkinitrd should be run under the same system (e.g. kernel version).
As I said; I can find plenty of tutorials explaining how to extract/mount/recompress the initrd image but I don't know what to do once I've gotten that far. I see the /etc/drivers/<device> folders, do I just put my drivers in those folders and hope for the best? Do I need to modify so other "conf" sort of files to tell linux to initialize/probe for the devices that those drivers enable?
Try it. It does not hurt: the worst that can happen is that the new drivers will not be used.
(Though it is very likely tha they wiil be ignored. Chrooting to the extracted system and depmodding the new modules might be needed for the new modules to be used)
Sigh. I think I've hit my frustration limit for this.
I downloaded the source files for the graphics drivers I want to support (Intel GMA) and after many hours of installing dependencies and rerunning "./configure" and "make" until they finally went through without errors I still don't have a .ko file.
Not to mention that I didn't really get what J_Szucs said about "mkinitrd should be run under the same system (e.g. kernel version)" but it occurs to me that I'm doing all of this on the latest Ubuntu version which is 2.6.31-14-generic. So I think that even if I got everything compiled and put in the right place I would then have to do it all again under the 2.6.15-52 kernel. I don't even know where to begin with installing an older kernel.