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Old 07-01-2008, 10:49 AM   #1
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Registered: Jul 2008
Location: Columbus, Oh. USA
Distribution: Slackware (mostly)
Posts: 6

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Installing to PATA disk on motherboards that use SATA and "legacy" PATA.

I have managed to get things up and working after much trouble.

The motherboard in use has 4 SATA ports and 1 PATA connector (the word connector is used intentionally).
The bios lets me set it to use only SATA or use both, but as seen below these new motherboards are using tricks for "legacy" ATA support.

I am using one PATA disk as /, boot and swap and another as /usr/local. They show up as /dev/hda and /dev/hdb.

My CD-ROM (Lit-On super multi DVD-EVERYTHING) is SATA. This shows up as /dev/sr0

First I get an install working via huge SMP kernel and all seems fine but I notice that my disk performance is maxing out at 2MB/s. This cant be right since they are PATA UATA5 disks.

I search around a bit and notice that even though the huge kernel has the proper driver for the on-board IDE the module for generic IDE is loading first and preventing the proper module from loading.

I find that to get the system to not load generic IDE I need to modify my lilo.conf to add the following to the stanza for linux:

append = "ide0=0"
addappend = "ide1=0"

The above prevents the generic IDE module from auto detecting and allows the proper driver to load.

I wish that were the end of it but as life works when I install that lilo configuration during re-boot I am told that /dev/hda no longer exists and it cant find the boot partition.

This is because the real drivers for the chipset see the devices as they are, not how the bios is lying about them.

Now my devices are:
/dev/sda (used to be /dev/hda)
/dev/sdb (used to be /dev/hdb)
/dev/sr0 (unchanged)

If I go back to the original lilo config I can get in and all is fine, but I cant tell lilo to go and write a config that calls diks that do not exist.

I finally got a brainstorm and used the boot options that prevent it using ide-generic to boot the system via the slack12 DVD and then was able to install the proper lilo config.

I am working on building a stripped down kernel that will only have the drivers needed so I can get rid of those strings.

Is there a better way to do it then what I did? I am pretty sure now that I know what to do I can just use those options to prevent the install from using the generic IDE driver.

Last edited by demianph; 07-01-2008 at 11:50 AM.
Old 07-02-2008, 11:15 AM   #2
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Midwest USA, Central Illinois
Distribution: SlackwareŽ
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Try passing the 'hda=noprobe' & 'hdb=noprobe' parameter to the kernel. You should than have the proper drivers for the libata.

I would suggest that you read the 'CHANGES_AND_HINTS.TXT' for SlackwareŽ 12.1.


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