Yellow Dog Linux 3.0 not installing on a PowerMac 9500: kernel panic!
I am trying to install Yellow Dog Linux 3.0 on a PowerMac 9500 running OS 9.1. I have three drives: a 1GB IBM, a 4.3GB SEAGATE, and a 117GB LaCie connected by FireWire. I bought the LaCie recently (along with a FireWire PCI Card) to install Linux on, but it turns out that Yellow Dog 3.0 does not support FireWire. It also appears that Mac OS 9.1 won't boot off of that drive, so I am using it for my files. I moved everything from my two old drives onto my new drive and installed Mac OS 9.1 on the 1GB IBM drive. I then tried to install Yellow Dog 3.0 on the now empty 4.3GB drive, following all on-screen directions as well as a Terra-Soft companion packet. I got to the partitioning step, and since Disk Druid was not acting as the packet says it should, I chose automatic partitioning. It then gave me this error:
Could not allocate requested partitions
Partitioning failed: Could not allocate partitions
AUTOMATIC PARTITIONING ERRORS
The following errors occurred with your partitioning:
You have not defined a root partition (/), which is required for installation of Yellow Dog Linux to continue.
This can happen if there is not enough space on your hard drive(s) for the installation. You can choose a different automatic partitioning option, or click 'Back' to select manual partitioning.
Press 'OK' to continue.
I figured out why this error ocurred: I had not partitioned the SEAGATE drive correctly prior to installation with Mac OS's Drive Setup Utility. So I designated most of the drive as "unallocated" and tried again. This time it worked and I got all the way to the actual installation. Five minutes into it, however, the top quarter of the screen went black and it displayed in white text:
<0> Kernel panic: mesh: double DMA start!
This happened every time I tried it.
A friend of mine who is running YDL 3.0 said this might be caused by not having the YDL Drive first in the SCSI chain. So I called in a computer expert to change the jumpers, and after an hour and a half of failures we discovered that the 1GB drive was preset to SCSI ID 0 and is unchangeable.
Since the 1GB drive is too small to hold Linux, the only way for me to have Linux on the first drive in the SCSI is to disconnect the 1GB drive from the computer. Since that is the startup drive, I needed to partition the 4.3GB drive to hold both OS 9.1 and Linux. So I divided the 4.3GB drive into three partitions:
1. A 3.9GB unallocated partition for Linux.
2. A .4GB Mac OS Standard partition for OS 9.1.
3. A 5kb partition called "Extra." (This last partition was needed because otherwise the partitioning failed.)
For curiosity's sake, I tried installing linux onto partition 1 while all three partitions were still empty. The installer accepted the partitions, but went into kernel panic again. This didn't surprise me, because the 4.3GB drive was still not first in the SCSI chain. I then installed OS 9.1 on partition 2 of the 4.3GB drive, rebooted on that drive, turned off the computer, disconnected the 1GB drive, set the 4.3GB drive to SCSI ID 0, and turned the computer back on. Mac OS worked fine. I then tried to install linux, hoping the kernel panic would be gone. However, I never got far enough to find out: at the partitioning step, it gave me the same "root partition (/)" error message shown above!
This makes absolutely no sense to me, because the error didn't occur the second to last time I tried installing linux, and nothing about the partitioning had changed since then. In fact, the only change in the entire drive that was made since that time was that OS 9.1 had been installed on partition 2. But Linux was supposed to install on partition 1, and the installer shouldn't even be LOOKING at partition 2.
If any of you Linux-Gods out there have a solution or a suggestion, I would really appreciate it. I have spent three weeks on this, and I do not wan't to admit defeat.