kern/52128: Unable to floppy install on Toshiba Libretto 70

Mike Hogsett hogsett at
Mon May 12 11:10:09 PDT 2003

>Number:         52128
>Category:       kern
>Synopsis:       Unable to floppy install on Toshiba Libretto 70
>Confidential:   no
>Severity:       serious
>Priority:       medium
>Responsible:    freebsd-bugs
>State:          open
>Class:          sw-bug
>Submitter-Id:   current-users
>Arrival-Date:   Mon May 12 11:10:07 PDT 2003
>Originator:     Mike Hogsett
>Release:        FreeBSD 5.1-BETA i386
SRI International
System: FreeBSD 4.8-RELEASE FreeBSD 4.8-RELEASE #6: Tue Apr 1 16:08:43 PST 2003 hogsett at i386

Actual target is a Libretto 70.  It has no OS installed now, although
previously it has had FreeBSD 4.8 installed. 


Previous FreeBSD 4.x versions of the kern.flp and mfsroot.flp would be
loaded into memory before the kernel loads.  This worked great for the
difficult to support PCMCIA floppy drive on the Libretto.

Installing 5.1-BETA (and probably 5.0-RELEASE) will require the
drivers.flp disk to be loaded before continuing with sysinstall so that
the PCMCIA floppy and network card can be used for install.  This is not
possible since at the point where the user is presented with the ability
to insert the drivers.flp disk there are no drivers loaded to support the
PCMCIA floppy drive present in the Libretto 70.  So we have a situation
where I need the drivers.flp disk to be able to use the floppy to load the
drivers.flp disk...


Attempt to install FreeBSD 5.1-BETA (or perhaps 5.0-RELEASE) on a Libretto


I am not certain, but it would seem that one of the following approaches
may work:

1) Build a unique kern.flp disk that contains the floppy driver support
for the Libretto's PCMCIA floppy drive.  

2) Prompt the user for the drivers.flp disk before the kernel loads (like
the user is prompted for the mfsroot.flp disk now).

I am unfamiliar with the low level process of loading and booting the
sysinstall program and its support files for installing FreeBSD, so there
may be a solution to this problem that I am not aware of.

I am willing to test various strategies to solve this.

I think that the solution should assume that the user installing on the
Libretto 70 has no other systems available.  The user should be able to
install FreeBSD 5.x on a Libretto 70 with only the floppy images, their
PCMCIA floppy drive, and a supported PCMCIA network card (as is the case
for a 4.x install on the same hardware).


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