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#1 2022-01-05 04:45:14

Demon-Souls
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Registered: 2022-01-05
Posts: 5

Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

Hi, I had this old PC around and today I got IDE HDD for it, so I decide to try Linux on it,

But archlinux32 installer reach init and I got kernel panic, here is screenshot

https://i.ibb.co/LPB9Qms/IMG-20211231-012253.jpg

So what Distro should i try next, e.g if I tried old version of Arch(32 bit) could I found it packages repository still existing to update the system install software,
I don't mind having old version of any software as long it's works .
this PC can't boot from USB flash disk, the only option is CD-ROMs I'll try to upgrade it DDR RAM but not soon.

I test Arch32 Image on Virt Manager with 256MB of RAM and I got same Kernel panic error

https://i.ibb.co/VmtRCxs/image-2021-12-31-221209.png
=Update=
This PC had AMD Duron 800Mhz CPU, 256MB RAM, 80GB IDE H.D.D, it had VIA buitin VGA,
The Boot optionavaliable in this machin BIOS :- 1- HDD, 2- CD-ROM, 3 - Network boot PIX somthing.

Last edited by Demon-Souls (2022-01-05 21:48:25)

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#2 2022-01-05 07:34:44

levi
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From: Yorkshire, UK
Registered: 2018-06-16
Posts: 1,179

Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

Yes, the kernel has tended to grow so it's not like you can run it on an old 16MB PC any more.

Out of interest, what architecture are you trying to boot?  I wonder if it's running out of space trying to umpack the initcpio, and as I recall the 486 architecture release doesn't use an initcpio for that reason.  I'm not sure how it does that, but it might be worth looking into, unless you're already running the 486 build install disk.


Architecture: pentium4, Testing repos: Yes, Hardware: EeePC 901+2GB RAM+OS half on the SD card.

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#3 2022-01-05 09:06:08

abaumann
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From: Zurich
Registered: 2019-11-14
Posts: 810
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Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

The standard Arch32 ISO does not work below let's say 768 MB of RAM reliably.

You need a special 486 ISO for low-memory systems: archlinux32-2021.07.16-i486.iso
This ISO uses a filesystem directly on the ISO and no ramdisk, so you have to make sure
the kernel and the kernel modules are matching to your machine.
This is all quite alpha and work in progress.

See https://git.archlinux32.org/archi486/tree/motd for details how the 486 ISO is built.

Caveat: this is really alpha and might need some manual tweaks to make it working.

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#4 2022-01-05 14:10:49

abaumann
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From: Zurich
Registered: 2019-11-14
Posts: 810
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Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

The other option is to install on a machine with pacstrap, see for instance
https://bbs.archlinux32.org/viewtopic.php?id=510, you set the Architecture
to i486 in /etc/pacman.conf before you call pacstrap.

256MB is plenty to boot an installed Archlinux32, but not to boot the standard ISO.

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#5 2022-01-05 16:04:16

levi
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From: Yorkshire, UK
Registered: 2018-06-16
Posts: 1,179

Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

I wonder, are you really limited to CD-Rs or can you also do DVD-Rs to boot from?  Depends if you have a DVD drive in it I guess. Although now I look it looks like i686 based isos only bested 650MB in September last year, and i486 based isos are smaller again.  I can't remember when I had to stop using my stock of old CD-Rs to burn dual isos on to but it feels a good few years ago now.


Architecture: pentium4, Testing repos: Yes, Hardware: EeePC 901+2GB RAM+OS half on the SD card.

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#6 2022-01-05 16:41:42

abaumann
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From: Zurich
Registered: 2019-11-14
Posts: 810
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Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

..not to mention my stock of old 3 1/2" floppies.. ;-)

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#7 2022-01-06 02:54:08

Demon-Souls
Member
Registered: 2022-01-05
Posts: 5

Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

abaumann wrote:

The other option is to install on a machine with pacstrap, see for instance
https://bbs.archlinux32.org/viewtopic.php?id=510, you set the Architecture
to i486 in /etc/pacman.conf before you call pacstrap.

256MB is plenty to boot an installed Archlinux32, but not to boot the standard ISO.

Alright I have this idea in my mind, which I install it inot VirtrualMachine (e.g with 512MB RAM) and take copy of it after install as .img file,
and than boot into that PC with any Linux old Distro (LMint 8 booted), and dd the whole image (from the usb flashdisk) into that HDD,
But what's could hold me up is tweaking the system later to reduce it memory footprint (even before installing the GUI), is there guid or sombody give me hint where to start digging,
i don't mind removing System-D (if it didn't break the sytem) and use any old school alternative, the end result I want it to able to install RetroArch(evel older version I don't care), and EmulationStation on top of it .

Last edited by Demon-Souls (2022-01-06 02:55:55)

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#8 2022-01-06 09:37:14

abaumann
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From: Zurich
Registered: 2019-11-14
Posts: 810
Website

Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

Actually, I'm running a systemd/Xorg/fvwm2 like system on a 196 MB Thinpad 240x.
You cannot easily remove systemd in Archlinux32/Archlinux. I would add a gratious swap,
this makes the system quite usable at 256MB, I think.
Netsurf, Midori, Dillo, Lynx, W3m are quite usable as web browsers.
Abiword, Gnumeric work fine, Staroffice is a little bit on the limit.
Also make sure to have the swap enabled if using pacman to update the system, I had
memory shortage issues without swap.

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#9 2022-01-06 17:08:55

Demon-Souls
Member
Registered: 2022-01-05
Posts: 5

Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

abaumann wrote:

Netsurf, Midori, Dillo, Lynx, W3m are quite usable as web browsers.
Abiword, Gnumeric work fine, Staroffice is a little bit on the limit.
Also make sure to have the swap enabled if using pacman to update the system, I had
memory shortage issues without swap.

Thanks for valuable reply, that's really giving me hope, because I like Arch and I considered it best Distro ever have,
But I'm still didn't solve the boot issue of the installer, does installing Arch in VM and use `DD` command, the installed image file, to that pc HDD, make that system boot up.
As I mention I need this system to boot up single application (EmulationStaion and RetroArch) nothing else needed, I don't even need WindowManger Just Xorg and it drivers.

Last edited by Demon-Souls (2022-01-06 17:14:15)

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#10 2022-01-06 17:29:17

levi
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From: Yorkshire, UK
Registered: 2018-06-16
Posts: 1,179

Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

Have you tried copying the image from the vm using dd and install it on the target HDD?  I'd be slightly surprised if that didn't work, but to be honest I have no experience of how VMs work.


Architecture: pentium4, Testing repos: Yes, Hardware: EeePC 901+2GB RAM+OS half on the SD card.

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#11 2022-01-06 20:52:07

Demon-Souls
Member
Registered: 2022-01-05
Posts: 5

Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

levi wrote:

Have you tried copying the image from the vm using dd and install it on the target HDD?  I'd be slightly surprised if that didn't work, but to be honest, I have no experience of how VMs work.

In fact, I never tried to copy the entire OS from one PC to another, and I don't know exactly how Linux boot up and load drivers, in case I change hardware In install it into.
Anyway I'll try that soon.

Last edited by Demon-Souls (2022-01-06 20:54:19)

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#12 2022-01-06 21:27:46

levi
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From: Yorkshire, UK
Registered: 2018-06-16
Posts: 1,179

Re: Kernel panic trying to install Archlinux32 on 256MB old PC

Well, linux generally enumerates the hardware at boot, so at long as it's got a CPU with the right architecture and sufficient RAM it'll boot up.  What happens after that point generally involves some configuration, because for example my bedroom server currently has two network interfaces but I'm only using one, and this laptop has two sound inputs/outputs (the original one somewhat broken), and the machine's configuration tells it which to use.


Architecture: pentium4, Testing repos: Yes, Hardware: EeePC 901+2GB RAM+OS half on the SD card.

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