[SunRescue] NetBSD 1.4 miniroot problem fixed

jwbirdsa at carfallin.picarefy.com jwbirdsa at carfallin.picarefy.com
Sun Dec 5 20:20:53 CST 1999

   NetBSD 1.4 SPARC spends a lot of time and effort tracking down its
boot device while it's going through enumerating devices, possibly having
to do with the idiot way that sd? devices no longer map directly to SCSI IDs.
Out of the box, the attach function for the Sun-3 (si) SCSI controller
doesn't advance a pointer in an array, which causes part of the sd enumeration
system to try to access element -1 of another array, which causes the whole
thing to collapse in a heap. Once I got past that, it then kept complaining
about boot device mismatches, because another function wasn't advancing
a different pointer in the same array and that half of its little bitty
mind wanted to believe that the si device was its boot device.

   That wasn't too hard to fix, but after getting past all that, the kernel
goes out to lunch, waiting forever for the SCSI device to close after sizing
the disk.

   I give up. I originally selected NetBSD because it has the best Sun-3
support and I was hoping to have all the Suns run the same OS. But at this
point, it's just not worth it. Support for older SPARCs is just too broken.
I could drop back to 1.3.3, which seems to work OK modulo the occasional
panic caused by some kind of SCSI-related timeout, but I don't want to be
stuck with yet another dead OS. I just looked at OpenBSD's page for SPARCs
and they claim to support everything I need, so OpenBSD, here I come!

   --James B.

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