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Old 01-02-2018, 07:08 PM   #1
His_Cifnes
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Question iPXE install on 486er hangs


Dear forum,

I'm freshly registered, knowing the forum quite a while already, but never did I need to register, until now.
Got my AMD 486 DX-2 66 MHz refurbished and working fine again now, of course including all the quirks that came along back then already... which there is for instance the very limited boot order of "A:/C:" and "C:/A:". -Even though there is a CD-ROM drive installed in that machine.

Installing Slackware 32bit onto this 486er from floppy is no longer possible due to kernel size for quite a while now. The Slackware website gave quite a nice idea: Why not try any kind of PXE booting? This way I could kind of "internally host" the ISO and boot into it.

However, the network cards, that I use do not have their own PXE BIOS. I've tried an RTL8139 NIC and an Intel Pro 1000 Desktop card - both PCI. Quite a nice thingy: To go around that, there is a PXE boot floppy image. The iPXE project [http://www.ipxe.org] does offer an already made DSK file to dd onto a (/dev/zero'ed) 3,5" 1,445 MB floppy disk.
This works fine on ANY machine *BUT* my 486er. Unfortunately when booting this old machine, the entire system hangs, as described here: [http://forum.ipxe.org/showthread.php?tid=10713]

A very helpful user of that forum had a nice idea... perhaps it is the MMX extension, that my 486er does not have, that might crash the iPXE starter at boot. So I went and compiled one without by hand, dd'ed the newly made image on the floppy again.. but same result: Fires up iPXE everywhere BUT on my 486er. (Still only showing "Loading ROM image......")

Long story short: Did anybody attempt something similar yet? And if so.. did this machine boot? And if so.. how did you do that?
Havn't found anything in a reasonable range of threads throughout the forum.
 
Old 01-02-2018, 08:03 PM   #2
ZhaoLin1457
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I do not think it's possible to use Slackware 14.2 in an i486 box because both the kernel and libc are optimized for the i586, then they would not work in your machine.
 
Old 01-02-2018, 08:20 PM   #3
Darth Vader
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Quote:
Originally Posted by His_Cifnes View Post
Dear forum,

I'm freshly registered, knowing the forum quite a while already, but never did I need to register, until now.
Got my AMD 486 DX-2 66 MHz refurbished and working fine again now, of course including all the quirks that came along back then already... which there is for instance the very limited boot order of "A:/C:" and "C:/A:". -Even though there is a CD-ROM drive installed in that machine.

Installing Slackware 32bit onto this 486er from floppy is no longer possible due to kernel size for quite a while now. The Slackware website gave quite a nice idea: Why not try any kind of PXE booting? This way I could kind of "internally host" the ISO and boot into it.

However, the network cards, that I use do not have their own PXE BIOS. I've tried an RTL8139 NIC and an Intel Pro 1000 Desktop card - both PCI. Quite a nice thingy: To go around that, there is a PXE boot floppy image. The iPXE project [http://www.ipxe.org] does offer an already made DSK file to dd onto a (/dev/zero'ed) 3,5" 1,445 MB floppy disk.
This works fine on ANY machine *BUT* my 486er. Unfortunately when booting this old machine, the entire system hangs, as described here: [http://forum.ipxe.org/showthread.php?tid=10713]

A very helpful user of that forum had a nice idea... perhaps it is the MMX extension, that my 486er does not have, that might crash the iPXE starter at boot. So I went and compiled one without by hand, dd'ed the newly made image on the floppy again.. but same result: Fires up iPXE everywhere BUT on my 486er. (Still only showing "Loading ROM image......")

Long story short: Did anybody attempt something similar yet? And if so.. did this machine boot? And if so.. how did you do that?
Havn't found anything in a reasonable range of threads throughout the forum.
I do not think that any modern Slackware would work in a AMD 486 DX-2 66 MHz with 24MB RAM (as you say in the other forum), specially when the 14.2 already jumped in the i586 bandwagon.

I strongly suggest you to try an very old release like the Slackware 3.0, and to not try to go further of 7.0 ...

Last edited by Darth Vader; 01-02-2018 at 08:21 PM.
 
Old 01-03-2018, 01:39 AM   #4
His_Cifnes
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Arrow

hehe, thanks you two!

Aslong as there are updates for Slackware 3 to 7? Why not. : )

Currently this machine has DOS 6.22, OS/2 Warp 3 and SuSE Linux 6.0.

SuSE 6.0 came in handy because..
- I already had the installation media
- was the last SuSE with a boot floppy
- it's got mc, dd, smbmount & the ppa module (for zip100 drive) and all the stuff I need

Normally I would be completely fine with this setup, but unfortunately...
- it comes with lilo and this thingy cannot boot anything that is behind the first 1.024th cylinder of the hard drive - need a boot floppy to fire it up every time >_< --> I'd like to have grub....
- all the update paths are long gone, so no new software, no updates at all...
- no ssh2 supported by the old software, so not ssh'able over the net

That's why I want to step up to something more recent. And aslong as Slackware 3 to 7 still has updates and a maintained software repository, I'd happily install this instead. : )
 
Old 01-03-2018, 06:36 AM   #5
Darth Vader
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The Slackware releases from the range 3.0 to 7.0 are not maintained. Sorry!

Anyway, the maintained ones today starts from the version 13.0.

In other hand, the LILO limitations come also from your own BIOS limitations. I doubt that your BIOS supports booting from beyond 1024 cylinder.

Finally, I think that anything "modern" is simply too big to run in your very limited 24MB memory and that CPU.

Heck, only the Kernel wants more memory than your actual one.

Finally, to bear in mind that starting with 12.0, the Slackware wants a 256MB memory as minimum, to be able to run in a console.

So, if you want a "modern" Linux into your box, I am afraid that you should invent your own operating system.

Last edited by Darth Vader; 01-03-2018 at 06:48 AM.
 
Old 01-03-2018, 07:05 AM   #6
Didier Spaier
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This reminds me that I have been able to load two Basic interpreters plus the OS in 64KB in a DTC Microfile without any issue. But it was nearly forty years ago...
 
Old 01-03-2018, 08:57 AM   #7
allend
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Are the French generally masochistic?
In French http://www.lanterne-rouge.info/artic...113331590.html
In English https://translate.googleusercontent....-L3h0wnDnjahsA
Slackware 8.1 with 16MB RAM on 486DX2 More than enough to get to the moon!
 
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Old 01-03-2018, 03:31 PM   #8
OldHolborn
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This is for Slackware-14.0, it should probably work for 14.1 which was the last 486 build

https://www.linuxquestions.org/quest...ot-4175418129/
 
Old 01-03-2018, 04:30 PM   #9
His_Cifnes
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very cewl!! *____*
Going to try this out. Reading this, this might actually be do'able for this machine too.

Thanks! - You guys saved an old piece of hardware and made it more usable than it was before! Greatly appreciated! : ))
 
  


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