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Old 06-24-2003, 07:04 PM   #1
ecriep
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Slackware 7.1 deadend


I have a CD set for Slackware 7.1 which I got last year but didn't have nerve enough to use. Now I'm trying to install BigSlack from disc #3 of that set, or to boot from CD #2. In both instances I've reached deadend which the available slack faqs don't seem to cover. Slack's help page specifies they may be slow responding to emails, so I've decided to ask on a forum first. I really have tried to RTFM but I can't find anything I recognize as a solution.

My system is 1.1 gB cpu, 768 mB RAM, 2 HDs each 40 gB, WinME.

Re: BigSlack:

I downloaded BigSlack from the CD to my hard drive in c:\linux. I made an autoexec file on a DOS boot floppy which contains the line \linux\loadlin \linux\vmlinuz root=/dev/hda1 rw vga=791 which I copied from the linux.bat file downloaded to c:\linux. As I understand it, c: in windows is equal to /dev/hda1 in Linux.

I ran the DOS floppy. There were a lot of messages which flashed past on the screen, and then it halted with these messages:
Partition check:
VFS: Cannot open root device 03:01
kernel panic: VFS: Unable to mount root fs on 03:01

According to the faq this happens because the designation hda1 is incorrect, and I should try changing numbers until I get something which works. I tried hda2 through hda15, then hda0, then hdb_, then hdc_ (from another faq I found online somewhere). Nothing worked, same error message except different numbers. BTW, messages farther up the screen did refer to "hda", but not to hdb or hdc.

How can I get it to "mount root fs on 03:01?

Re Bootable CD #2:

This CD booted fine and went through a great many messages on the screen until it came to a message which invited me to log on as 'root' without the '. I typed root, and the cursor went to the next line. It did not ask me for password, but it seemed like it wanted me to type something. The faq said there's no password on an installation so just hit enter. Did that, got the same invitation to log in as 'root'. I tried various passwords, root again, admin, hello, enter, each time I got the same invitation to log in as root.

How can I get logged in?

The Slack forums are apparently closed, or I don't have permission to access them, so can someone please point me toward a howto or something which covers this?

In faith, Dave
dave@christos.cjb.net
Viva Texas
 
Old 06-28-2003, 10:01 AM   #2
tobyl
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Dave,

Did you have any success?
I have been using Slack 9.0 for a while now and I would strongly recommend getting a more recent version. If like me, you have a dialup connection, you can probably get the installation disks at little over production cost by mail order, that is the case in the uk anyway.
I'll send you a copy if you get really stuck.

I cant understand your login problem as what you did worked fine for me (ie type root, then enter).

good luck, and don't give up!

tobyl
 
Old 06-28-2003, 03:25 PM   #3
ecriep
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Tobyl, Thank you for your response. I've thought about trying to get new CDs but I'll have to order them thru the mail. I had hoped to get a solution for the version I have.

Do you have any ideas on my BigSlack problem, how to mount root fs on 03:01?

In faith, Dave
dave@christos.cjb.net
Viva Texas
 
Old 06-28-2003, 06:02 PM   #4
tobyl
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Dave
A later version of linux will have a newer kernel, and has a better chance of recognising your hardware.
I have not used BigSlack, but I hope that the following may help a bit:

A typical computer will have IDE0 and IDE1.
both of these have a master and slave channel.

in linux,
IDE0 master = /dev/hda
IDE0 slave =/dev/hdb
IDE1 master = /dev/hdc
IDE1 slave = /dev/hdd

hda1 is the 1st partition on hda, etc

(there is also scd1 etc, this would describe a scsi drive)

Saying all that, unless you have a scsi drive or a special ide controller, /dev/hda1 is almost certainly your c: drive.

I seem to remember that you have to write the boot floppy with rawrite.exe, did you do this?

If you just want to have a look at linux without changing your system setup, then there is a superb distro called Knoppix which boots up directly from the cd, no messing around, and is quite easy to find on linux mag cover disks etc. Then, if you want to go for it, slim down your windows onto one drive, and install Slack on the other one! (just a suggestion)
tobyl
 
Old 06-29-2003, 03:37 AM   #5
slakmagik
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Never mind - dumb post, I think.

Just try booting from the hard drive in DOS mode rather than from a floppy.

Last edited by slakmagik; 06-29-2003 at 03:39 AM.
 
Old 06-30-2003, 05:13 PM   #6
ecriep
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Slackware 7.1 deadend

Tobyl: I tried hda1 and hdc1, neither would mount. My boot floppy isn't a linux boot floopy.. it's DOS. It has an autoexec.bat file on it copied from the linux.bat file dropped on c:\linux by the BigSlack download. Originally I was to have the autoexec file call linux.bat which in turn called vmlinuz, but I just rewrote the bat file to call vmlinuz directly. However, I tried it both ways and neither way worked.

It does do a lot of stuff with a lot of messages on the screen, so I think it is calling vmlinuz and is booting for a while, but hangs when it comes to mounting the root fs. According to the faq, that just means I got the number wrong (hda1), but I tried them all one by one by one... and none worked.

Now the fan for my cpu has quit and my computer crashes randomly. I don't blame that on linux :^), but I do have to stop and get it fixed. Thank you for trying to help me, and I'll check out knoppix, lindows, and the other suggestions I got.

To digiot,

I did try that also, but it did the same thing, halted unable to mount the root fs.

Question: What is my SCO and how did I destroy it?

In faith, Dave
dave@christos.cjb.net
Viva Texas
 
Old 06-30-2003, 09:18 PM   #7
slakmagik
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Huh. I can't think what it is then, unless you have a scsi drive, like tobyl mentioned, though I think it's sda1. I could be wrong. Or there's just some weird typo - maybe just an extra space - somewhere in the sequence of files and commands.

SCO is the company suing IBM while claiming that Linux would suck if it wasn't for a bunch of stolen code. As far as how to destroy them, I dunno. But it *must* be done.
 
Old 06-30-2003, 11:36 PM   #8
ecriep
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slackware 7.1 deadend

OK, I tried sda1 too. I'll check tomorrow and see if I can find a typo or space.

Red-faced apologies on SCO. I typed it into google and now know more about them. I guess not ALL abbreviations refer to obscure linux files or commands :^).

In faith, Dave
dave@christos.cjb.net
Viva Texas
 
Old 07-01-2003, 04:10 PM   #9
tobyl
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Dave

Get that fan fixed! then:

I spent a bit of time reading the 7.1/bigslack/readme.1st

please humor me and try the following:

1. (Digiot's idea)
edit LINUX.BAT in the \linux directory on your c: drive, on the loadlin line (the one that's not commented out
with 'rem'): root=/dev/hda1

Restart in dos mode from windows, (not a command shell within windows) I don't know how easy that is from
ME, as I have win98, and I recall that m$ suppressed the command line in ME.

C:> cd \linux
C\linux\:> LINUX.BAT

2. If that doesn't work try making a windows boot floppy that just leaves you at the C:> prompt, and do the above 2
commands again.

3. If that doesn't work, try (I copied this bit from the readme)

Using a boot floppy
-------------------

The other way you can boot the system is by using a boot floppy. There's
one provided (bootdisk.img) that uses the generic kernel, or you can use any
of the bootdisks included with Slackware.

To write the image to a floppy disk, use the RAWRITE.EXE program:

[put a blank floppy in a:]
rawrite bootdisk.img a:

To boot a Linux system in read-write mode on /dev/hda1, boot the bootdisk. On
the 'boot:' prompt, you'd enter this command:

mount root=/dev/hda1 rw

this all assumes that you installed \linux on the C: drive. If it was on the D: drive, replace hda1 with hdb1
and start again at the top!

the other thing you may need to experiment with is HIMEM.SYS and EMM386.EXE, they may need to be loaded
if you try to run from dos. They are loaded from your config.sys file (1st 2 entries), like this:
DEVICE=C:\WINDOWS\HIMEM.SYS
DEVICE=C:\WINDOWS\EMM386.EXE

good luck
tobyl

Last edited by tobyl; 07-01-2003 at 04:14 PM.
 
Old 07-07-2003, 11:56 PM   #10
ecriep
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slackware 7.1 deadend

Hi Tobyl:

Re editing linux.bat, the uncommented line already contains that entry. The whole line is:

\linux\loadlin \linux\vmlinuz root=/dev/hda1 rw vga=791

I've also tried it as mount root=/dev/hda1.

I copied this same line to the autoexec.bat file on my DOS boot floppy. I have a windows 95 boot floppy which dumps me at the DOS > prompt in DOS 8 so booting into DOS is no problem.

I made an IDE and Boot floppies using rawrite for booting from the bootable CD, but don't know how to tell it where the linux directory and files are (c:\linux). I tried to read the floppy from windows to see if there's some kind of auroexec equivalent, but windoze says the floppy isn't formatted and offers to format it for me :^).

I ran the IDE floppy and eventually got a LILO prompt asking for parameters. First I hit enter, put in the boot floppy, and got to login but it wants some kind of password, otherwise it's in some kind of eternal loop back to "login".

So I tried entering the line from linux.bat (above). Different error messages : There were a bunch of /etc/rc thingies, then a bunch of sbin/ldconfig errors. There's no gpm, stty, or setfont, and I was back to the login eternal loop again.

Then I tried putting a config.sys file on the DOSD boot floppy with himem and emm386 on it. Haven't done that for many years . That resulted in kernel panic, unable to mount root fs on 03:01.

Did I leave anything out?

In faith, Dave
dave@christos.cjb.net
Viva Texas
 
Old 07-08-2003, 12:37 AM   #11
slakmagik
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Okay - I'm grasping at straws. You did unzip it into the c:\linux directory and didn't just copy it, right?

I'm really lost. It worked like a charm for me, though it was ZipSlack, but I gather it's the same principle. Um. Is the image in the root of c:\linux actually called vmlinuz? Stuff like that is what I'm wondering now.

This is my Linux.bat, in the root of c:\linux:

\linux\loadlin \linux\vmlinuz root=/dev/hda1 rw

Maybe try it with the rw and without the vga?
 
Old 07-08-2003, 12:44 PM   #12
tobyl
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In addition to what digiot says,
I am not quite sure of the order of events. I think at the point in your last post where you say:
"I ran the IDE floppy and eventually got a LILO prompt asking for parameters." - here, I think you need to put

mount root=/dev/hda1 rw

then try to login as root. Maybe you already tried this though?

Anyway, I have one more suggestion, if you have the patience,
and that is to ask for help here:

http://www.userlocal.com/phorum/

I dont know what the chances are someone recognises your problem, but at least there is a forum section here devoted entirely to Zip/Bigslack, and it may be worth a try.

regards

tobyl
 
Old 07-08-2003, 05:17 PM   #13
ecriep
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Slackware 7.1 deadend

digiot:

Yes I unzipped it (with WinZip). The file in c:\linux is vmlinuz. I removed the vga reference in Autoexec on the DOS boot floppy.

tobyl:

I tried it last night with mount root=/dev/hda1. There is an hda1 file or whatever in /dev. I'm changing it back to delete the mount command for the time being, as digiot suggested. It doesn't seem to make any difference either way

...............................

Now I've just tried the DOS boot floppy with these lines in it:
c:
\linux\loadlin \linux\vmlinuz root=/dev/hda1 rw

At least, I got different boot and error messages:

In the booting messages, something I hadn't noticed before: It found hda twice, first as the cdrom drive and then a couple of lines later as the HD. My bios is set to boot cdrom-floppy-HD.

The error messages:
Error: not ready -- (sense key=0x02)
(reserved error code)--(asc=0x3a, ascq=0x01)
The failed "Read Cd/Dvd capacity packet command was:
"25 00 00 00... (more 00s)
VFS cannot open root device 03:01
kernel panic : VFS: Unable to mount root fs on 03:01

Any Ideas? I'm thinking about wiping the BigSlack installation and installing the ZipSlack one instead. Would that be worth trying? Then I'll visit that phorum.

In faith, Dave
dave@christos.cjb.net
Viva Texas
 
Old 07-08-2003, 06:18 PM   #14
tobyl
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I think there must be something unusual with the way you hard disk drives are set up.
Would you be able to confirm
how many partitions are on each of your HD's,
are they ide/scsi
are they set master/slave (ie not CS - cable select) - jumper settings on the HD's
what ide channels are they on, and lastly
what exactly were the details on the screen re the partitions, eg

hda: hda1 hda2 < hda5 >

I suspect that zipslack will come up with the same errors, but no harm in giving it a go I guess

tobyl
 
Old 07-08-2003, 07:31 PM   #15
slakmagik
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Maybe try things like turning off PnP in the BIOS and removing the CD from the boot order altogether, as well. That's got to be what it is - especially if your cd-rom light comes on when its searching - it's trying to find the filesystem on the CD and freaks when it can't find it. I have no idea why that would occur but maybe some of tobyl's suggestions will clear that up. Maybe by making the CD as inaccessible as possible, so to speak, it'll find the hard drive. And, yeah, I think you'd get the same results with ZipSlack so might as well stick with this.
 
  


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