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rvijay 02-09-2005 06:20 AM

My Experience/Challenges with LFS.
I have Had Several Challanges trying to start LFS. Here they are:
1. Host Distro Problem
2. Old Host Kernel Problem
3. Need for Live CD
4. Hard Drive Space Problem
5. After I got the Live CD, Problem with Serial mouse
6. Memory Problem to use Firefox browser in live CD
7. Connecting going online with the LiveCD (Still not solved)
8. File not found/permission problems

These are all very basic and not really LFS but they do takeup a lot of time. Moreover, look at the wiki, FAQ and also the LFS newsgroups/Chat Groups. People are discussing problems all the time.

7. Here are my latest issues:
Chapter 5.5. GCC-3.4.1 - Pass 1

make BOOT_LDFLAGS="-static" bootstrap I got the following errors:
make 2 timevar.o error 1
Make 1 error 2
make (bootstrap) error 2

After make install I got the following errors
timevar.0 error 1
Install-gcc error 2

Not much said in wiki and FAQ inregards to these errors.

Also compile times are really long in my 333Mhz PC with over 125 MB ram. Took for Binutils, the first one with 1SBU about 45 minutes !!!

LFS is a good project. However, there are several challenges, it is a time consumming long project and not a smooth road, one that needs to be taken with great caution/reflection.


320mb 02-09-2005 08:44 AM


3. Need for Live CD
why?? I did not need this........I still use LFS 5.0 that I built over a year ago..............your making things way too hard for yourself


4. Hard Drive Space Problem
just get another HD to put LFS on............HDD are cheap these days...........

rvijay 02-09-2005 08:52 AM

I needed the Live CD as the LFS 5.0 will not work with my host distro. It is easier to get the Live CD, than to find a host that fits exactly well with LFS 5.0

In regards to the HD, eventually yes I found another one.

I don't think I am making things hard for myself. I was very open, willing to learn and tried to solve all problems. However, they just seem to come one after another with LFS.


shudde 02-17-2005 11:30 PM

serial mouse
Did you happen to find a solution for the serial mouse problem with the LFS livecd? I've got the same problem and still trying to sort it out.

na5m 02-18-2005 03:30 AM

Your LFS should boot via LILO(8) with no problem at all. And GRUB should be even more certain. I opted not to use GRUB, as LILO(8) is sure-fire and (once you've familiarized yourself with it) fairly simple. You've probably read about a million LILO(8) how-to's, but what's one more? :)

With LILO(8) already installed on your host distro (and your host distro is installed on, say /dev/hda1), simply append your host distro's lilo.conf with:

image = /mnt/lfs/boot/bzImage !!!SEE NOTE1 BELOW!!!
root = /dev/hda2 !!!SEE NOTE2 BELOW!!!
label = LFS !!!SEE NOTE3 BELOW!!!
read-only !!!SEE NOTE4 BELOW!!!

Of course, don't include the above shouting :) . Then simply type the below into your host distro's shell and then reboot:

lilo -b /dev/hda1

And of course, replace the hda1 from above with wherever you want LILO(8) to be installed (hda if you want LILO(8) to go into the MBR of your first IDE disk, hda1 to install LILO(8) into the superblock of your first partition on your first IDE disk, etc.) The -b switch tells LILO(8) that you're going to specify where you'd like to install LILO(8), and will override the boot = <path> in your lilo.conf file (I'm pretty sure...). Quick note- you do not need the LILO(8) program on your LFS system. And you do not need a lilo.conf on your LFS system.

NOTE1: This is correct. Trust me :) . The kernel image you created for your new LFS system must be reachable when you execute the lilo -b command above from your host distro. If the command (issued from your host distro) ls /mnt/lfs/boot/bzImage fails, then the lilo -b command will also fail. In other words, the LFS partition must be mounted at the time you issue the lilo -b command. After you run the lilo -b command, LILO(8) no longer cares whether LFS is mounted or not, as LILO(8) now knows exactly where your kernel image is (and will remember where it is). But if you ever move bzImage, rename bzImage or create a (new) symlink for bzImage, or replace bzImage, you'll need to re-run the lilo -b command from your host distro. Of course, replace /mnt/lfs/boot/bzImage with whatever the path is from your host distro to your LFS distro's kernel image. Quick note- the lilo.conf file is never read or used, except when you run the lilo command.

NOTE2: This must be the actual partition that your shiny new LFS root directory resides upon.

NOTE3: Self explanatory. Give the LILO(8) boot menu selector a cool name for your LFS system.

NOTE4: Non-(MS?)DOS file systems (ext2, ext3, Reiser, XFS, ...) should be initially mounted read only.

Sorry for being so wordy, but a lot of posts are under-wordy and can be ambiguous and a leaves you wondering a bit. Good luck, rvijay! And I hope this may help you and others!

rvijay 02-18-2005 07:12 AM

Re: serial mouse

Originally posted by shudde
Did you happen to find a solution for the serial mouse problem with the LFS livecd? I've got the same problem and still trying to sort it out.
Nope I didn't. Just have another PC that uses a PS2 mouse.


Yerp 02-19-2005 01:22 PM


1. Host Distro Problem
2. Old Host Kernel Problem
3. Need for Live CD
It's possible you installed your new lfs kernel over the hosts' kernel; but as rvijay points out, you probably have a lilo/grub issue.


4. Hard Drive Space Problem
8. File not found/permission problems
If you run out of space at anytime durig the installation of LFS, many many many things can get $&#^'d up. Make sure you have enough space, and the easier, yet longer, way is to reinstall the lfs completely if this space runs out during install.

1) try burning your sources (*.tar.{gz,bz2}) to a cd-rom and only extract them when you need them.
2) Delete all extracted source packages whenever LFS book does not explicitly tell you to keep them.
3) As old as your system seems to be it looks like even the cheap harddrives are faster than your processors...So if you need space, you should have little problems getting it.


5. After I got the Live CD, Problem with Serial mouse
This specific Distro on your Live CD did not build support for the serial mouse (which is all but depreciated to my limited knowledge). Try another Live CD


Also compile times are really long in my 333Mhz PC with over 125 MB ram. Took for Binutils, the first one with 1SBU about 45 minutes !!!
An interesting solution, that may take some learning??
Are you familiar with SSH? (Not going into the details of ssh at the moment)

If you have a faster Linux (and more importantly with more RAM box somewhere, you could install openssh onto your host/to be LFS computer. Login to the to-ne-LFS system and install from there.

I am not entirely sure if the installation is done on the faster ssh'ing machine or on the host machine, but You can try binutils and time it in this method.

BTW, you will need root SSH and to be safer, disconnect from the outside world if possible.

rvijay 02-19-2005 01:59 PM

Thanks for the response. The last option more RAM/SSH not available at the moment.
This is for the long term future.

Also, inorder to correct the serial mouse problem, I went to irc chat for LFS, they told me to setup my X windows correctly. But I could never do this.
Had no idea there is a live CD with serial mouse support.

druuna 02-19-2005 02:18 PM


I've been using knoppix 3.x as base (CD) and never had any serious problems. There are one or two but those are very wel documented and solutions are available. Used knoppix with LFS 5, 5.1, 6 and BLFS 5,5.1. A remastered knoppix 3.5 is the base for an automated LFS and very basic BLFS install.

Using a live cd is, in my opinion, the best way to approach a LFS install.

Why? 'Cause the base is always the same. No strange environment settings, no old aliasses hanging around etc etc. And once you have identified and solved a problem caused by the live cd, it will never be a problem again.

Personally I don't mind the time the whole process takes compared to what I get in return. And the first few times I was to consumed with all the new stuff that was comming my way. I must admit that by now I've 'automated' LFS, which will not shorten the actual process time but will remove the need for me to be behind the keyboard during the whole process.

LFS is one of those 'distro's' where you must ask yourself: Why do I want this?
I can come up with 2 answers:
1) To learn (a lot) more about the details of linux and how things are done.
2) Full control of your own machine(s)

Just my 2c.

rvijay 02-19-2005 04:16 PM

The last 2 cents are really great and vital to reflect on. Thanks for sharing.


Yerp 02-21-2005 09:44 AM

yes, but heres the problem I have with Live CD LFS installs..
I have only 1 CD-Rom Drive.

druuna 02-21-2005 10:00 AM


Could you be more elaborate, 'cause I don't see the problem :)

One or more free HD's/Partitions for the LFS part to be and the Live CD as base to install LFS. LFS packets could be on one of the partitions or on the (remastered) Live CD.

Yerp 02-28-2005 03:42 PM

More elaborate:
Recycled Old computer (pentium2)

- Power cord only grants two devices (aside from floppy)
- 1 for host hard drive = NULL
- 1 for cd-rom drive = only operating system available, initially
- limited network capabilities
- I use my own tweaked LFS and heavilly tweaked BLFS
- I know how to burn to a CD but I am unaware of how to burn a cd such that it is bootable

- My current method around this required 3 cd's :(
- 1 CD that boots the OS into RAM disk, thus I can eject the CDrom
- I then mount my custom made scripts/archive cd
- unfortunately, the designers of the ram disc OS decided not to put Bzip into their system, so I then need another CD to exrtract my compressed OS's (I could however only tar ONE LFS os (under 600 megs) and then cut down to 1 cd, but I placed both my scripts, archives, and two operating systems onto one 700mb cdrom with bzip. this is around 1.6 to 2.4 gigs.
- if I were to ssh to a live cd, if that live cd has ssh on it... I would need a second computer, and I cannot guaruntee that I will always have a second computer available to do such a task..

druuna 03-01-2005 03:01 AM

Hi again,

What are you (Yerp) trying to do?

If I read it correct you have a box that has RAM and a CDROM player, no HD(s). On what medium are you planning to install LFS?

About the live CD you are using: You could look around for one that has all the tools you need. I like Knoppix, but there are more, here's a 'small' list of linux live cd's:
209 Linux Live CD's

I do believe it is possible to use only one live CD instead of the three you need. Knoppix can be remastered. Take off all the unneeded stuff, put all LFS (not BLFS, too big) packets on it. All you need is now on 1 bootable live CD. Don't know if you ever remastered a live CD, but here's a links that covers the knoppix remaster process:
Knoppix Remastering

About using ssh: It does not make the installation any faster (the overhead of the network could make it, marginally, slower). It is a great way to still be able to use a browser and be able to cut/paste commands. I do have to agree that not everybody has more then one computer that he/she can use, so this option is not for everybody.

Hope this helps.

Yerp 03-01-2005 12:21 PM


Originally posted by Yerp
- 1 for host hard drive = NULL
sorry i can see the misunderstanding, the NULL meant that I had it completely wiped to zeros a few times, not that I didnt have a HD

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