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#1 2021-06-11 02:49:35

iggy12345
Member
Registered: 2021-06-11
Posts: 2

Installation hangs on pentium pro

HI, I'm trying to restore an old dell dimension xps pro 200n with a pentium pro (200MHz) processor and 64 MB of SDRAM, I made it to the initial post screen where I select to install the i686 iso, but once it loads the img files and the linuz ramdisk, it just hangs with a blinking cursor. I tried to add iommu=off to the options in the selection screen, but it didn't make a difference. Am I doing something wrong here?

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#2 2021-06-11 04:26:48

levi
Moderator
From: Yorkshire, UK
Registered: 2018-06-16
Posts: 906

Re: Installation hangs on pentium pro

There's an option to install the iso?  That's new.  There used to be a boot menu where you could select to boot to the arch linux stored inside the iso on the DVD-R disc you inserted (or theoretically on the USB stick you inserted, but from memory pentium pro's predate USB), or boot the existing OS on the hard disc and a few other options.  Perhaps it's changed.  In any case if it's loading a kernel and an initcpio then it's doing something... but then it stops.  Have you tried 'nomodeset' yet?


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

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#3 2021-06-11 06:20:15

andreas_baumann
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From: Zurich, Switzerland
Registered: 2017-08-10
Posts: 822
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Re: Installation hangs on pentium pro

I also experienced some hanging issues also with newer kernels, but the last ISO (June 2021) was booting on this machine: https://bbs.archlinux32.org/viewtopic.php?id=3093

Maybe you can enable 'debug' in the kernel options when booting the ISO (https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/Kernel_parameters), this might spit out an error messages and explain
why it's hanging (though it didn't for me).

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#4 2021-06-12 03:00:42

iggy12345
Member
Registered: 2021-06-11
Posts: 2

Re: Installation hangs on pentium pro

andreas_baumann wrote:

I also experienced some hanging issues also with newer kernels, but the last ISO (June 2021) was booting on this machine: https://bbs.archlinux32.org/viewtopic.php?id=3093

Maybe you can enable 'debug' in the kernel options when booting the ISO (https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/Kernel_parameters), this might spit out an error messages and explain
why it's hanging (though it didn't for me).

I took a look at that, thank you, I found that it is giving me an error `Initramfs unpacking failed: invalid magic at start of compressed archive` but that is because I have to use the following parameters just to get the kernel to boot:

acpi=off iommu=off mem=64512K nomodeset debug

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#5 2021-06-12 05:32:15

levi
Moderator
From: Yorkshire, UK
Registered: 2018-06-16
Posts: 906

Re: Installation hangs on pentium pro

Maybe the amount of RAM on that machine is stopping it unpacking the initramfs.  On my machine for example my current initramfs.img file is just shy of 8MB in size.


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

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#6 2021-06-13 15:52:01

andreas_baumann
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From: Zurich, Switzerland
Registered: 2017-08-10
Posts: 822
Website

Re: Installation hangs on pentium pro

Ah, 64 MB of RAM is by far not enough. I need at least a pentium2 and 512 MB memory in a libvirt virtual machine.
You need a specially crafted boot CD for such old machine (i486 packages and not i686, no ramdisks or loading of the root file system into memory).
Such a ISO existed but I never had the time to build a new one (it also deviates completely from upstream).

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#7 2021-06-13 16:39:14

levi
Moderator
From: Yorkshire, UK
Registered: 2018-06-16
Posts: 906

Re: Installation hangs on pentium pro

I used to run archlinux before the split on a pentium 3 with 80MB of RAM or thereabouts, but it was quite paintful and I quickly ordered 512MB to max out the motherboard and replaced the RAM.

But yeah, that's a good point, the pentium pro won't run our i686 instructions since that pretty much requires a pentium 3 to run.  A pentium pro is pretty mucn a pentium 1.5 so yeah you'll need to boot 486 packages to run, and lack of RAM might bite anyway.  But that perhaps explains why it's hanging because it'll pretty much hit an SIMD instruction pretty soon and not know what to do.  I'd expect a 486 based live disc to get further, the only problem being as far as I know we don't produce a 486 live disc as far as I know, so you'll need to do a kind of LFS thing to get up and running I think.


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

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