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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 7:56 am 
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Howdy All,

I remember people running Linux on Indy systems in the past. I was wondering if any was able to get Linux working on an Octane? If you were, how difficult was it?

Thank you

Steve


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 8:10 am 
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sbget wrote:
Howdy All,

I remember people running Linux on Indy systems in the past. I was wondering if any was able to get Linux working on an Octane? If you were, how difficult was it?

Thank you

Steve


Last time I tried, all it had was a busybox console. No support for just about everything. I would describe the endeavor as difficult and pointless.

IRIX works fine though.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:18 am 
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We've had gentoo going on them a while back at the computer club at school. X works, but with no acceleration.

I was able to dupe one of the boot disks to get it working on my octane, of course I had no root password so I didn't get too far...

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:20 am 
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I gotta agree on VP in this one.
You can get Linux to work but it is rather useless and crippled.
If you can get hold of a copy of Irix (not here though) you will be better off.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2008 2:03 pm 
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pentium wrote:
I gotta agree on VP in this one.
You can get Linux to work but it is rather useless and crippled.
If you can get hold of a copy of Irix (not here though) you will be better off.


I should add, anything you would want to do in linux you can do better in irix.
But you CAN run linux on an octane, complete with xorg. I can't remember if the sound works or not, I don't think we ever had speakers on them.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 1:08 am 
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Seriously, why the Linux hate? Yes, I'll third that the Octane's hardware works much better under IRIX and that any of the really unique stuff like video capture and accessories probably don't. However, the original question was has anyone gotten Linux to work on their Octane. The answer is yes, I have. Kumba (the Gentoo-MIPS lead) and Frapazoid are two other forum members who I know have as well.

The Octane isn't quite as crippled under Linux as some posters have suggested. Impact based cards have some degree of X acceleration. The VPro cards don't, however. The audio works, onboard SCSI works, the Octane tape drive works, and PCI shoehorns and card cadges work (and support a large amount of hardware IRIX doesn't like USB cards). I'm not 100% sure on the status of the XIO peripherals, some cards work (anything that internally uses a PCI bridge) including SCSI, Gigabit, and Fibre Channel. The only other thing I remember testing was the SCSI floppy, which didn't work. (Actually caused constant printks so I had to pull it).

Somewhat unfortunately, all of the support is currently only in Gentoo. I highly suggest the Gentoo SGI Live CD. If you have a SCSI CD-ROM, just burn it and boot. If you like what you see, you can go from there. http://dev.gentoo.org/~kumba/mips/livecd/x-rc6/ Actually read the readme since its not a normal ISO image.

Getting the kernel patches into Linux-MIPS and mainline is a goal of one of the developers on the mailing list who recently added a lot of SGI support (audio drivers for O2, Indy, and Indigo 2, among other things). Also, I'd like to point out that 2.6.27/28 will likely make the VPro issue moot as Linux will get kernel mode setting. That means Radeon X1550s (or whatever's the best PC PCI video card with Linux drivers around) for our SGIs. I'm fairly sure an X1550 is better than a V12 for the vast majority of video tasks.

Anyway... the point is that Linux support for SGIs is being worked on and will get better as time goes on.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 8:56 am 
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tillin9 wrote:
The Octane isn't quite as crippled under Linux as some posters have suggested.


Passive aggressive post of the month award goes to you. :lol:

tillin9 wrote:
Impact based cards have some degree of X acceleration. The VPro cards don't, however.


So, works better on low end Octanes? I did not know that.

tillin9 wrote:
...That means Radeon X1550s (or whatever's the best PC PCI video card with Linux drivers around) for our SGIs. I'm fairly sure an X1550 is better than a V12 for the vast majority of video tasks.


Have you tried that yet? sounds interesting. If it truly works as well as you claim, it could be worth the switch later.

tillin9 wrote:
Anyway... the point is that Linux support for SGIs is being worked on and will get better as time goes on.


It has and will, I never said it wouldn't. Don't read between my lines, I am neither subtle or wise. ;)


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 11:26 am 
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I tried to install Debian GNU/Linux on my Octane2 but I obtained several crashes booting from network (bootp).

I have read that Octane support is experimental, if somebody knows how to get it working please post it.

Edit:
I have found on Google several references about Gentoo working on Octane machines, but you can still find some suprises about stability:
http://dev.gentoo.org/~redhatter/mips/h ... 4/o32.html

I don't like Gentoo, you need too much time to get a system functional.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 1:57 pm 
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There is not hate on Linux going on. It's just that Irix works better and I can't think of single thing you can do in Linux you can't do with Irix (I mean, besides USB Mass storage support).


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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 1:18 am 
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Sorry, I think I overdid it. :oops:

Yea, even though I have a V12, I was looking around for an MXE for awhile for the sole fact that its the fastest card with Linux acceleration.

As far as the kernel mode setting, I haven't gotten that working on an SGI. Actually, the only really working support (as in testable with a released distro) right now is Intel's integrated graphics. If Intel actually releases Larabee, that should work too. Open source radeon support is going to be included in kernel 2.6.27 or .28 (I know the devs. that are working on the ATI side - and have told them about my plans to put a card in an O2) but the current stable linux release is 2.6.25 so we're a few months off. When I get it working, I'll let everyone here know. :D

@Chatuser - Yea, Debian's kernel is based on either Linux-MIPS or the mainline tree and hence won't work on an Octane. As I said, the necessary patches are in Gentoo's repositories. You can use a Gentoo kernel with Debian, but actually getting it on the Octane would be a little tricky. I'd recommend doing something like installing on an O2 or Indy (which Debian supports very well) then compiling a Gentoo kernel for the Debian disk and transplanting it into your Octane.


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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 1:29 am 
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tillin9 wrote:
@Chatuser - Yea, Debian's kernel is based on either Linux-MIPS or the mainline tree and hence won't work on an Octane. As I said, the necessary patches are in Gentoo's repositories. You can use a Gentoo kernel with Debian, but actually getting it on the Octane would be a little tricky. I'd recommend doing something like installing on an O2 or Indy (which Debian supports very well) then compiling a Gentoo kernel for the Debian disk and transplanting it into your Octane.


mmm ... nice experiment ;)

I have an external disk with Debian for my Indy, I could test this installation with a new Gentoo kernel on my Octane.

It sounds like a Frankenstein film, you try to make a functional body using several parts of another bodies.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 1:39 am 
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I'll just reply to the thread title and say: no. I can't get it working. I booted Gentoo's netinstall image on my Octane, partitioned disk, did a regular install (pretty used to Gentoo installs by now), built kernel, and installed bootloader. I just can't get the bootloader working though--it says booting system, but nothing happens. It is the same result whether I'm trying to netboot my kernel, boot from volume header, or from an ext2 partition. I even tried two kernel versions: the current stable mips, 2.6.22 I think, and the current ~mips 2.6.24.
It is really weird, because the netboot image works so well. I've even accidentally booted into my installation using the netboot kernel, and it works well.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 4:50 am 
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pip wrote:
I just can't get the bootloader working though--it says booting system, but nothing happens.



double check your prom settings. That's what I kept having issues with. I tried it at least a year ago, though, and with a gentoo boot disk probably from 2005. So I don't remember much, or how much it has changed.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 1:47 pm 
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@pip - Seems like an arcload issue. I also couldn't get arcload (Gentoo's choice of bootloader) working, so I used arcboot (Debian's choice of bootloader) instead. Arcload is technically better, but more difficult to configure. The config file needs lots of nested { and } at the right places. At the time the nice wiki and help entries didn't exist, so you might have more luck now using the live cd and fiddling with the config.


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Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 14, 2008 9:01 am 
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Howdy All,

Thank you all for replying.

Steve


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