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Old 12-13-2008, 12:42 AM   #1
BoydRice
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First Time Install - Kernel Panic Out of Memory and No Killable Processes...


Hello,

I was going to try out the new Slackware release on an old compaq laptop I have. The machine has a Pentium 3 and 64mb of ram. When I booted the first CD for Slackware 12.2 I get the message "kernel panic - not syncing: Out of memory and no killable processes...". I get this message after the boot process says "checking if image is initramfs...it is". I tried booting the two different kernels but got the same message. Just to see if this was hardware related I went ahead and installed Vector Linux Light 5.9 with no problems. I was also able to run Damn Small Linux with no problem. I have read that Slackware is the best if you want to learn about Linux, and since I am very new to Linux I thought that Slackware would be great to learn on this old laptop. Anyway I do appologize in advance if I overlooked a similar thread on this issue. Also thank you very much to anyone who takes the time to respond.

-Boyd
 
Old 12-13-2008, 03:03 AM   #2
H_TeXMeX_H
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That's an awfully low amount of RAM, but it still should work. Are you sure the disk has been burned properly ?
 
Old 12-13-2008, 08:29 AM   #3
lexfuzo
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Similar problem w/ Thinkpad X20

Hello,
I experienced the same message when I tried to install Slackware 12.2 on my Thinkpad, also with 64MB RAM.

I tried with both huge.s and hugesmp.s - same result.

I am running memetest now, no errors yet, after 45 min and 3 passes.

On slackware.com the minimim requirements is said to be 64MB - ist that correct?

I wanted to try with one of the smaller kernels I know from Slackware 11: bare.i and the like. But I cannot find them on the 12.2 DVD any more.

Are there any options I can pass to the kernel to make its memory footprint smaller? Or to the initrd?

Debian 4.0 runs well on the same machine - here I have one concrete question: If I don't want to compile a kernel, can I just "borrow" the kernel from Debian and use it for my slackware system?

lexfuzo
 
Old 12-13-2008, 08:57 AM   #4
H_TeXMeX_H
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You can try using the Debian kernel, but you may have problems if it was compiled with a different version of glibc. One thing that will work for sure is use the .config from the Debian kernel to compile a Slackware kernel and use that to boot.
 
Old 12-13-2008, 04:59 PM   #5
BoydRice
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H_TeXMeX_H View Post
That's an awfully low amount of RAM, but it still should work. Are you sure the disk has been burned properly ?
Yes, I tried a new cd again with the same results? Any other ideas? Thanks for your help.
 
Old 12-13-2008, 07:15 PM   #6
onebuck
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Hi,

If you downloaded the cd/dvd iso then be sure to check the md5sum for the original iso. From the cli;

Code:
~#cd /downloadisolocation      #cdromiso.iso cdromiso.md5 

~#md5sum -c cdromiso.md5       #substitute the correct name to check
This will check the download iso with the known md5sum that you should also get with the iso download.

You could have a bad burn, to check the cd/dvd with the original iso md5, use this CdromMd5sumsAfterBurning.

A little work on your part to check the cd/dvd to original iso but worth the effort. It does sound like a repeated problem.
 
Old 12-14-2008, 07:06 AM   #7
lexfuzo
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problem is with the amount of RAM, not the install media

Hello,
I tried the install in a virtualbox, from the downloaded ISO image which passed the md5 test.

It failed with kernel panic when I set the RAM to 64MB, but
even with as little as 72 MB RAM i could boot into the setup prompt.
After coming so far, I could see from `top` that
46876K were used, and 16372K were free.

So the setup system does need far less than 64MB - why does it fail then when we only have 64MB? A clue to this is in the log: Scrolling back to the "checking if image is initramfs" (the last line before the kernel panic) shows that the next line is:
"Freeing initrd memory: 13161K freed"

From this I conclude:
1) We can rule out that the install media is the problem
2) making a smaller initrd could solve the problem (correct me on this if you have other ideas)

Now, how can we accomplish this? Do I have to compile a
not-so-huge.s kernel with a smaller initrd? Or is there any possibility to set up swap sooner? (I don't think so..)

lexfuzo
 
Old 12-14-2008, 09:45 AM   #8
BoydRice
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onebuck View Post
Hi,

If you downloaded the cd/dvd iso then be sure to check the md5sum for the original iso. From the cli;

Code:
~#cd /downloadisolocation      #cdromiso.iso cdromiso.md5 

~#md5sum -c cdromiso.md5       #substitute the correct name to check
This will check the download iso with the known md5sum that you should also get with the iso download.

You could have a bad burn, to check the cd/dvd with the original iso md5, use this CdromMd5sumsAfterBurning.

A little work on your part to check the cd/dvd to original iso but worth the effort. It does sound like a repeated problem.
Thanks, I tried that and the cd passed the md5 test. I find this very strange because I can boot up Freebsd 7, Debian, and Vector Linux (which I believe is Slackware based) with no problems. It had been my understanding that Slackware was great for low-spec systems, as it is minimalist in nature. Thanks for the help.
 
Old 12-14-2008, 12:06 PM   #9
lexfuzo
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One Solution

Hello again,

I found a solution for our problem - at least I could complete the setup on my Thinkpad.

As I wrote above, the problem lies in the initrd, which is too big.
In the isolinux directory of the boot CD there is only one initrd image. It contains kernel modules for both huge.s and huge-smp.s kernels which makes the ramdisk very big. I wonder if those modules even are used?

Anyways, I removed one module tree from the initrd image and remastered the boot CD. Then it worked for me.

BoydRice, this should work for you, too. Below, I'll post the steps I made to accomplish it. Once you have the system installed, you might want to compile an optimized kernel, as the huge kernels form the CD really take up a lot of space. Btw, does anybody know what happened to generic.s, bare.s and the other, smaller kernels that were once on a Slackware disc?

happy slacking,
lexfuzo

Code:
cd tmp
# mount original CD image and retrieve contents
mount -t iso9660 -o loop cdimage.iso /mnt/cdimage
mkdir cdcontents
cp -a /mnt/cdimage/* cdcontents

# unpack old initrd image: first unzip, then extract with cpio
mkdir oldinitrd
cd oldinitrd
cp cdcontents/isolinux/initrd.img initrd.img.gz
gunzip initrd.img.gz
cpio -i --make-directories < initrd.img

# now you have the contents of the initrd in this directory (oldinitrd)
# modify the initrd to make it smaller
# there were two module trees in lib so I removed one:
rm -r lib/modules/2.6.27.7-smp

# make new initrd image (with cpio and gzip) and replace the old
find ./ | cpio -H newc -o > ../newinitrd.img
cd ..
gzip -9 newinitrd.img
mv newinitrd.img.gz cdcontents/isolinux/initrd.img

# make new CD image
cd cdcontents
mkisofs -o ../newcdimage.iso \
-R -J -A "Slackware Install" \
-hide-rr-moved \
-v -d -N \
-no-emul-boot -boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table \
-sort isolinux/iso.sort \
-b isolinux/isolinux.bin \
-c isolinux/isolinux.boot \
-V "SlackCD" .
 
Old 12-14-2008, 03:02 PM   #10
H_TeXMeX_H
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lexfuzo View Post
Btw, does anybody know what happened to generic.s, bare.s and the other, smaller kernels that were once on a Slackware disc?
Sadly they were removed. I would have liked more of a choice of kernels so that this kind of stuff doesn't happen. With more kernels available, one of them is bound to work.
 
Old 01-14-2009, 02:21 PM   #11
asynchronous13
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I ran into the same issue attempting to install Slackware 12.2 on a PC with 64MB memory. Slackware 12.1 installed without problems, however.
 
  


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