These are the release-notes for patch 5086, which i find quite interesting, to say the least. I found this while scourging for 6.5.21 info. Oh, and NO, i don't have the patch, if someone wants to ask me that
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1. Patch SG0005086 Release Note
This release note describes patch SG0005086 to IRIX
6.5/6.5SE and 6.5.1 to 6.5.20 inclusive.
This patch contains the IRIX 6.5.21 versions of the
installation tools inst, swmgr, showfiles and showprods.
Therefore, IRIX 6.5.21 itself will replace this patch.
If you are using the "live installation" method to upgrade
from any 6.5-based release prior to 6.5.21 to another from
6.5.21 onwards, you must first install this patch to enable
inst to handle certain additions to the format of the
distribution images. If you have 6.5.21 installed on your
system, the required changes are already contained in inst.
Alternatively, a "miniroot install" will allow you to
install versions from 6.5.21 onwards without any patching.
You should be sure to use the miniroot contained in the
distribution to which you are upgrading.
This patch is also useful to install on any 6.5-based
release to take advantage of bug fixes made to the
installation tools (see below.)
So this means that live installing 6.5.21 from pre 6.5.21 IRIX is not possible without this patch. Hmmm, makes you wonder about what happens next....