[svlug] RAMDisk Bluesy

Alvin Oga alvin at planet.fef.com
Mon Jul 16 19:24:01 PDT 2001

hi ya ivan

i see oyu are having fun....
( its a pain in teh behind )

you need to create yourown ramdisk...with oyurown kernel...
( unless rd_image.gz is currently used on your system and does
( work before having done the flash stuff

the "ramdisk_size" should be the size of the "kernel" + overhead
for the starting point or rd_image.gz
	( something like that

check the mkinitrd file too for more hints
check tomsrtbt files tooo for even more hints

rd_image should be a compressed image of the root fs that
used to run in /dev/ram0 for that lilo stuff to work

mke sure your kernel has the proper support for running ramdisks
and loop device and  related options for /dev/ram

at least you have 30Mb flash...
	- a few months ago i squeezed bash and all the rootfs into 4Mb flash
	that ran in /dev/ram{0,1,2}

have fun

> Ivan Passos wrote:
> Hello,
> I'm trying to boot a Linux system that has the following configuration:
> - 32MB of Flash (IDE Flash Drive), where a kernel image and a compressed
>   root filesystem image are stored.
> - 256MB of RAM, 128MB of which will be used as a RAMDisk (believe me, this
>   is cheaper than 128MB Flash + 128MB RAM ... :).
> After looking for information on how to do that on the 'Net and in the
> Documentation/ directory of the kernel src, I've been able make the Flash
> Drive bootable. Unfortunately, it's bootable, but it doesn't boot
> successfully ... :(
> What I tried:
> - Compressed the image I used to boot the system from a regular IDE HD to
>   a file called rd_image.gz (~20MB compressed), and copied it to the IDE
>   Flash Drive.
> - Compiled a 2.4.6 kernel with RAMDisk and initrd support built-in, and
>   then copied it to the IDE Flash Drive.
> - Ran LILO with the following config. file (based on the doc. I found so
>   far):
> 	boot=/dev/hda		# The FlashDrive device
> 	install=/boot/boot.b
> 	map=/boot/map
> 	append="ramdisk_size=131072 initrd=rd_image.gz"
> 	vga=normal
> 	default=Linux
> 	delay=5
> 	image=/boot/vmlinuz
> 		initrd=/boot/rd_image.gz
> 		root=/dev/ram0
> 		label=Linux
> 		read-only
> LILO completes the operation without problems (no errors). However, when I
> boot the system from the FlashDrive, this is the output I get:
> LILO Loading Linux ......................................................
> ..............................................
> That's it!! The system hangs at this point (it really hangs, to the point
> that the "soft" power on/off doesn't work anymore, and I have to turn off
> the system from the back in order to reboot it).
> What am I doing wrong?? Is my RAMDisk image too big (I thought there was
> no limit, as long as you had enough RAM ...)?? Does anyone here know a
> good resource on the 'Net where I can find more detailed information about
> creating a RAMDisk-based Linux system that boots from a device other than
> a floppy disk?? Most of the docs I found were related to boot / rescue /
> utility floppies, so I don't know whether this is the right way to do it
> or not ...
> Any help would be appreciated.
> Later,
> Ivan
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