Request help with a 486 install

Request help with a 486 install

Post by Al Bake » Tue, 16 Apr 2002 09:42:46



I have a 486DX2-25 with 32 megs of memory and a Sony CDU 33A CD drive.

Since the system is incapable of booting from the CD (no provision for that
in the BIOS), I have tried at least a dozen different Linux boot floppy
disks (Red Hat, Slackware, Mandrake, Debian, etc.). The loader loads, the
kernel VMLINUZ loads, and either it says READY and then hangs, or says READY
and the computer immediately reboots. I have created and tried boot floppies
said to work with 8 meg systems, 16 meg systems, no PCI, OLDCDROM, and so
on.

The furthest I have been able to go is booting DOS 6.22, and then running
autoboot.bat from a Red Hat 7.0 CD. This loads Linux, and I get as far as
the configuration options (the 7.2 CDs I have won't even get this far). It
asks for the driver disk, but can't find the driver for the CDU 33A CD. Red
Hat's web site says it is included, but the closest that comes up is the CDU
31A. After selecting this, I get the error message "Failed to insert CDU 31a
module." I don't know if there are significant differences between the 31a
and 33a (one scsi and one IDE?).

There is another Sony driver (535 or something), which does load, but
eventually says it can't read from the CD. The configuration screen starts
with the SCSI controller option (I assume that the configuration program
thinks it has found a SCSI CD controller), but none of the selections work
with what I have (I tried them all anyhow). I also tried all the IDE
controller options, and none of them work.

I originally had 8 megs of RAM, and located some replacement simms, but I
continue to get the same error message. The memory passes the bios test, and
the HIMEM.SYS test.

The Sony CD has a separate controller. I have no idea if it is SCSI (it's
not a full blown SCSI, if it is, and doesn't have switches, extra cable
connector, or a terminator), IDE, or a hybrid (which used to exist, back in
the days of 1x and 2x CD drives).

I have a more recent extra CD drive (GoldstarCRD-8240B), but it won't work
properly, chaining it with the hard drive, using the controller built in to
the motherboard (I can read directories on the CD, but not access the
files). It doesn't make any difference if the hard drive is the master or
slave, and ditto for the CD. I know it isn't good practice to run a hard
drive and CD on the same controller, but nothing else was working anyhow. I
was able to dig up an old IDE hard drive controller, but the connectors have
less pins than the CD cable requires. I assume the old controller on the
motherboard won't properly read 24X drives).

I had no (more or less) trouble loading Linux onto some new PCs.

The thing is, even if the CD won't work, most of the Linux disks I have
tried won't get that far anyhow. A couple of them say they are able to run
Linux strictly from the floppy, for specialized purposes, such as a router.

I used Advanced Boot Manager 2.37.12 to partition the hard drive. Half is
for use by DOS, and the other half is 3 partitions for Linux. However, I
don't think it gets to this point before the system either hangs or reboots,
and it shouldn't make any difference with the diskettes that claim to have a
small system that runs off the floppy alone.

There could be three separate problems here. The PC itself (though one of
the features of Linux is that it is supposed to work on as little as a 386,
and the PC runs Windows for Workgroups 3.11 OK, including networking, file &
printer sharing), the floppy drive (it's a newer replacement for the
original old one, and boots & reads the initial Linux files OK), and the CD
drive.

I would appreciate any assistance. I've spent weeks on this, and have run
out of ideas. I'd like to be able to use this PC for a router. Thanks.

--

     << Art >>

www.artbecker.com

 
 
 

Request help with a 486 install

Post by Lew Pitche » Wed, 17 Apr 2002 08:17:51



> I have a 486DX2-25 with 32 megs of memory and a Sony CDU 33A CD drive.

That _should_ be a simple install

Quote:> Since the system is incapable of booting from the CD (no provision for that
> in the BIOS), I have tried at least a dozen different Linux boot floppy
> disks (Red Hat, Slackware, Mandrake, Debian, etc.). The loader loads, the
> kernel VMLINUZ loads, and either it says READY and then hangs, or says READY
> and the computer immediately reboots. I have created and tried boot floppies
> said to work with 8 meg systems, 16 meg systems, no PCI, OLDCDROM, and so
> on.

I'm surprised that you had a problem with the Slackware install. Which
bootdisk did you use? Are you sure it was the cdu31a.i bootdisk (which
covers both the Sony CDU31A and CDU33A cdrom drives)?

--
Lew Pitcher

Master Codewright and JOAT-in-training
Registered (Slackware) Linux User #112576 (http://counter.li.org/)

 
 
 

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