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SubjectRe: [PATCH][TAKE 4] THE LINUX/I386 BOOT PROTOCOL - Breaking the 256 limit
At 11:17 AM  Friday 5/5/2006, you wrote:
>John Coffman wrote:
>The problem isn't that LILO can't handle more than some number of
>characters; that's a LILO issue and doesn't affect the kernel.
>The problem is that some people have reported that the kernel
>crashes if booted with LILO and the size limit is more than
>255. They haven't so far commented on how they observed that, and
>that's a major problem.

Just re-compiling LILO with the COMMAND_LINE_SIZE parameter changed
from 256 to 512 will not work. A .bss area must be moved to avoid
clobbering the kernel header.

>If the issue is that LILO doesn't null-terminate overlong command
>lines, then that's pretty easy to deal with:
>- If the kernel sees protocol version <= 2.01, limit is 255+null.
>- If the kernel sees protocol version >= 2.02, but ID is 0x1X, limit
>is 255+null.
>- Otherwise limit is higher.
>When LILO is fixed, it has to bump the ID byte version number.
>What ID byte values has LILO used?

For the last 8 years LILO has used 0x02 as the loader ID.

If anyone wishes to test a version of LILO that is able to pass a 512
byte command line, then the "22.7.2-beta8" version in the "beta"
directory should be tried. It moves the offending ".bss" area to
avoid the header clobber. However, I have not yet changed the loader ID.


PGP KeyID: 6781C9C8 (good until 31-Dec-2008)
Keyserver at ldap:// OR
LILO links at
and Help link at

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