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Old 11-15-2010, 04:33 PM   #1
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Slackware 13.1 huge smp is not huge

I am a long time (1.something) slackware user and maintainer of a mirror site.

I'm suddenly having problems with my favorite distro.

(1) I've been mainly running Slackware64. When I was experiencing recent problems on a Slackware (32) 13.1 system, I discovered the huge-smp kernel does not support more than 4G of RAM. This is an obvious bug, and I am shocked that there is no fix out yet. Surely I can't be the only Slackware 32 user with >4G of RAM.

I've verified it on a 12G i7 system and an 8G Athlon64-X2 system.
Old 11-15-2010, 04:38 PM   #2
Alien Bob
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It is not huge in terms of memory it supports, but huge in terms of build-in drivers.
If you need access to more than 4 GB of RAM in a 32-bit kernel , you will have to rebuild your kernel for PAE. Otherwise, the 64-bit Slackware will of course address the RAM just fine.

It is not a bug you experience. It is a choice.

Old 11-15-2010, 04:40 PM   #3
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You'll have to remake your kernel with the HIGHMEM64GB option enabled.

Beaten by a faster typer again.

Last edited by brianL; 11-15-2010 at 04:41 PM.
Old 11-15-2010, 05:15 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Alien Bob View Post
It is not huge in terms of memory it supports, but huge in terms of build-in drivers.

It is not a bug you experience. It is a choice.

Ah. Where I work we use Ubuntu (before that it was SuSE, Red Hat and Debian), and there is a strong push not to compile one's own kernels, so I have been getting lazy and using distribution kernels. Before this, from 1994 until sometime last year, I always built my own.

On most distributions the size refers to the memory support--"bigmem", etc--and apparently I assumed it did here as well.

I'm actually having some problems getting custom kernels to work under Slackware 13.x...I can't seem to properly specify the root device anymore. I can set it with rdev and it's pointed to by lilo, but the kernel can't seem to find it, although it lists the partitions on the root devices, I can't get the root device to work properly, even with root= specified at root time.

I've tried root=/dev/sda3 and root=0803 (even root=0x0803) and it does not work.

It seems like the way things work has radically changed in the last couple years, and I'm behind the curve. I've only recently gotten comfortable with some of the other LSB changes, like the way my ethernet adapters are now magically renumbered.

Last edited by cs_strong; 11-15-2010 at 05:23 PM.
Old 11-16-2010, 07:41 AM   #5
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Midwest USA, Central Illinois
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Welcome to LQ!
Maybe you weren't aware;

The "old" ide subsystem in the the linux kernel is now deprecated in favor
of the newer libata subsystem, and this affects the naming of device nodes
for almost all types of disk drives -- hard drives in particular will now
have an "sd" named node. The following information should allow you to
handle that changeover gracefully.

1. Upgrade the kernel and kernel-modules packages normally.

2. Edit /etc/fstab to reflect the change from hd* to sd*.

If you have multiple SATA devices, and especially if you have some of
both hd* and sd* devices present already, then you're basically going
to be playing a guessing game right now, and you probably want to
consider using some of the persistent symlinks in the /dev/disk/by-*/
directories instead of raw device nodes -- for example, the links in
/dev/disk/by-id/ should always point to the same device, even if its
raw device node changes from e.g. sda1 to sdc1 or some such across
You can look at libata_switchover HOWTO , libata_switchover HOWTO has been around since 13.0 but some new users are not aware. A new user should look at rworkman's 'libata_switchover HOWTO' to understand and be aware of the changes when using Slackware 13.0 & Slackware 13.1. Especially when performing upgrades or introduction to Slackware 13/13.1.


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