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Making of a boot FD for installation of Linux into Libretto

This document describes a procedure to make one boot FD for installation of Linux into Libretto from a boot image and the root image ``pcmcia.gz'' in the Slackware3.4 distribution, assuming that you have a Linux box already running.

Choice of a boot image depends on the media with which you shall install Linux after making the new boot FD. For example, if you will use a device connecting to SCSI, you need one supporting SCSI.

In standard 2 FDs installation, what reads the root image, is the FDC driver in kernel. Since the PCMCIA FDD of Libretto is very special, the standard FDC driver in kernel can't handle it, and fails reading the image.

To avoid such situation, you should put a kernel image and the root image into one FD, and make LILO read the both image into ram disk. For such purpose, you can use the mechanism called ``initrd''. As for detailed explanation of this mechanism, please read the documentation ``/usr/src/linux/Documentation/initrd.txt''.

  1. You first have to format a 1.44MB FD, make a minix fs on it, and mount it on an appropriate directory (say ``/dst'').
  2. Make the contents of the boot image accessible under an appropriate directory (say ``/src'').
    If your running kernel supports a loopback device, you can mount the image directly on /src via the device, with the following command.
    mount /path/to/bootimage /src -o loop=/dev/loop0,blocksize=1024
  3. Copy the contents under /src, keeping directory structure and permissions, into /dst, in such a way
    cp -a /src/* /dst
  4. Copy the image ``pcmcia.gz'' into ``/dst/pcmcia.gz''.
  5. Make a device ``/dst/dev/ram0'' as follows.
    mknod /dst/dev/ram0 b 1 0
  6. Befor the first line of the form
    image = ...
    of ``/dst/etc/lilo.conf'', insert the following lines.
    image = /vmlinuz
    	label = initrd
    	ramdisk = 49152
    	initrd = /pcmciax.gz
    	root = /dev/ram0
    	vga = normal
    Then install LILO into the FD, with the following command.
    lilo -r /dst
  7. Unmounting /dst completes the process.
Good luck!!

Any questions or comments about this page are greatly appreciated.

Almost all contents in this site are written by Kiyokazu SUTO (i.e. me) unless especially noted. I want to put all of them into the PUBLIC DOMAIN, even though some lawyers mention that it is impossible in my country.