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redhavoc 08-25-2010 09:54 AM

GNUstep live CD for sparc as a rescue disk

I am looking for a rescue CD for an UltraSparc Sunfire V210 server, and the only live distro for sparc I found, was GNUstep live. My problem with GNUstep live cd is that I cannot get root access no matter what. I googled the subject to death and everybody claims that its a passwordless distro and performing a simple 'sudo su' should do the trick. Unfortunately this is not the case when I try it. Issuing the 'sudo su' command I get a few warnings and then it asks the password for the user account "me". I tried a few simple passwords but nothing seemed to do the trick.

Anybody knows how to tackle this problem. Or even better, are there any better distros to suggest as live rescue CDs for UltraSparc CPUs? Something that can support zfs would be ideal.

Thank in advance

GrapefruiTgirl 08-25-2010 10:14 AM


1. Debian GNU/Linux
The Debian Project is an association of individuals who have made common cause to create a free operating system. This operating system is called Debian GNU/Linux, or simply Debian for short. Debian systems currently use the Linux kernel. Linux is a completely free piece of software started by Linus Torvalds and supported by thousands of programmers worldwide. Of course, the thing that people want is application software: programs to help them get what they want to do done, from editing documents to running a business to playing games to writing more software. Debian comes with over 20,000 packages (precompiled software that is bundled up in a nice format for easy installation on your machine) - all of it free. It's a bit like a tower. At the base is the kernel. On top of that are all the basic tools. Next is all the software that you run on the computer. At the top of the tower is Debian -- carefully organizing and fitting everything so it all works together.

2. GNUstep Live CD
GNUstep live CD is a Debian-based Linux distribution containing GNUstep, network tools, multimedia software and games. GNUstep is an implementation of the OPENSTEP and Cocoa frameworks.

3. MilaX
MilaX is a small-size live-CD distribution which runs completely off a CD or a USB storage device. It is based on OpenSolaris Nevada and includes its basic features. It originally started as an experiment to see how much OpenSolaris software could fit on a mini-CD, but it eventually became a full-fledged OpenSolaris distribution. It is also possible to use MilaX as a rescue CD. It can be installed on storage media with a small capacity, including bootable business cards, USB flash drives, memory cards, and Zip drives. MilaX is free to use, modify and distribute.

4. OpenSolaris
Indiana is a binary distribution of an operating system built out of the OpenSolaris source code. The distribution is a point of integration for several current projects on, including those to make the installation experience easier, to modernise the look and feel of OpenSolaris on the desktop, and to introduce a network-based package management system into Solaris. The resulting distribution is a live CD install image, and is fully permissible to be redistributed by anyone.

5. Ubuntu
Ubuntu is a complete desktop Linux operating system, freely available with both community and professional support. The Ubuntu community is built on the ideas enshrined in the Ubuntu Manifesto: that software should be available free of charge, that software tools should be usable by people in their local language and despite any disabilities, and that people should have the freedom to customise and alter their software in whatever way they see fit. "Ubuntu" is an ancient African word, meaning "humanity to others". The Ubuntu distribution brings the spirit of Ubuntu to the software world.
Above are the results I get when searching for the following criteria:

+ Sparc32/Sparc64
+ Live CD media
+ Active/Dormant status
+ Any desktop
+ Any country of origin
+ Based on "Any" distro

So, not a vast array, but, maybe if you widen the search criteria a little (though I haven't a clue how you could do that - I've cast a pretty wide net) you might get more results. Also note that, for example Ubuntu only shows one or two releases for the sparc architecture, and they are not really recent versions; and also note, none of those I listed appear to support ZFS out of the box, if at all, so you'd need to research on that.

Unfortunately, I haven't a clue about the `sudo su` not working. A brief google turns up exactly what you wrote: there are supposed to be no passwords. Maybe `sudo passwd me` would go somewhere? :)

Good luck.

redhavoc 08-26-2010 04:16 AM

Thanks for the reply,
I did a similar search myself in distrowatch but live CD is a bit of a thorny issue. For example open solaris has live CD only for x86, and debian for x86 and powerpc. I dont know why I missed milax, but I should give it a try. I also found some tutorials on how to create an open solaris live cd from the automated install image.

Thanks for the help, I will update on the progress for future reference

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