The Shœstring Foundation Weblog, Miscellaneous Byproducts
bauerm (at) shoestringfoundation · org
Vignettes by George Herriman and a small program
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Laser-Tatooing Laptops again
This time with an artificial motif. It's a parametrised function
drawn with normal-distributed bubbles along the graph.
The code that does this for a reasonably large subset of
functions φ : I → R2
PostScript to Schotter
A quick look at Georg Nees' computer-generated artwork Schotter made me code
schotter.ps, a PostScript version of Schotter, which should look different every time it is rendered or printed (The picture below is a PNG of one possible rendering).
Resurrection of a
- SUN Netra T5220: 64-threaded 8-core sun4v, 32Gb ECC RAM, four SAS Disk slots, two of them with 146Gb blank disks
- Price in 2009: $22 000, got it for 100 Euros.
But the incompetent bungler who sold it forgot to mention that the
security-mode was set to
he has got no password for it. So one cannot even change the
boot device. Fortunately the default is
disk net, so installation from net to disk was possible.
- How to reset the
- (The security-mode password is not the ALOM/ILOM password. Those are relatively easy to reset.)
- Install OpenBSD sparc64 over the net
and run eeprom(4)?
eeprom cannot reset the security settings.
- Install FreeBSD sparc64 over the net, their
does reset security settings?
- FreeBSD sparc64 does not support/run on sun4v.
- Install Solaris or OpenSolaris or Indiana or Illumos?
- Solaris11 has a usb disk image,
disk is a
devalias to the first SAS disk,
so USB is right out.
- Take a Solaris disk image and write it to SAS disk on another machine.
Turns out that all machines at work have HP SmartArray controllers
that don't allow direct disk access, only RAID 0,1,6,10,..
- Buy a RAID controller, put it in a PC, write image to SAS disk.
But "JBOD" for an Adaptec ASR-5405
does not mean "Just a Bunch Of Disks". It means "Bunch of Disks the first blocks of
which are polluted with metadata by the controller and so cannot be used to boot
a system from a different controller". Idiots.
- Install Solaris over the net.
Oracle and the copies of the ruins of OpenSolaris Webpages
only offer their Autoinstaller/Jumpstart which requires an Oracle/SUN Install server.
- Set up a laptop with OpenSolaris as Install server.
Installation fails because
the networked bootloader requires additional parameters from OpenBootProm to
select the image to be pulled by http/tftp in the next step. And the OpenBootProm is not
accessible because of
But wait! The ALOM service processor allows to set a
bootscript along with the
logical domain selection to
bootmode, perhaps one can put the parameters in the
No, they are 64 chars maximum, of which 30 already eaten up by
setenv network-boot-arguments , and there are more required settings.
Even if the install server gets IP
126.96.36.199 and the path of the TFTP URL is just one letter,
the 64 chars do not suffice.
- OpenIndiana or Illumos?
Are x64 only, sparc64 port was dropped from the builds.
But there are at least two independent builds by sparc64 enthusiasts:
v9os and Tribblix.
But both supply ISO images only, and
boot cdrom will not work, because
- What did work after many sleepless hours:
- Install OpenBSD, they support sun4v and logical domains .
- Learn how to setup logical domains (not entirely trivial).
- Setup a logical domain with an actual (empty) SAS disk's block device as first
and a Solaris ISO image as the second
vdisk, and no
- Boot into control domain, connect to console of guest, discover that the logical domain's
openbootprom could not boot from the empty disk, but is permissive enough to accept
- Boot the installer, install onto the physical disk.
- Shutdown. Insert that disk in the first slot.
- Boot. Discover that Solaris 10 refuses to mount the root zfs because the installer put
the physical location in the zpool metadata, and since the disk resides in a different slot now, the
metadata is incorrect. This is a known problem .
- Booting from ALOM with
bootmode bootscript="boot -F failsafe" results in a rootshell,
zpool -f import rpool
automatically resets the
phys_path of the Zpool.
- After a reboot into a a fully functional though historical Solaris system,
eeprom shows that the installation process had reset the
So the problem was solved after step 5 above...