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SubjectAdding RAM to Linux on a 486; Proble w/1.3.8[56]
I have a machine configured with the following components:

486DX2 - 66MHz:
486-PSD-IO PCI motherboard with build in NCR 53c810 disk
Paradise S3 864 PCI video card
Sound Blaster 16 sound card
3Com 3c503 Ethernet LAN card
32 MBytes of 60 ns memory
Cardinal 28.8 kb modem
Acer 56L 15" monitor.

I normally run the following "major" applications:
Named 5.9.3
INN 1.4unoff3
GCC 2.7.0
PPP 2.2.0e
Diald 0.11
Sendmail 8.7.1
Linux kernel 1.3.84 (currently).

These are some of the problems I have had recently with two
changes I have tried to make to my system:
Adding memory (going from 16 MB to 32 MB)
Upgrading the kernel from 1.3.84 to 1.3.85 and 1.3.86

1. When I added the additional memory (I replaced four 4 MB
72 pin simm modules with two 16 MB 72 pin simms), none of the
recent kernels (1.3.84 -> 1.3.86) would complete the booting
process. They are would hang at the "VFS: Mount root (exts
filesystem) readonly" point. In other words, the init process
never got started properly. The system would than have to be
reset. If I enter "linux mem=16M" at the kerenl boot prompt,
the system would boot normally, but. as would be expected,
only 16 MB of the available 32 MB of memory is used. If I
modify the cache memory configuration to use only the internal
cache and not both or neither of the internal and external
caches, the system will boot completely using the full 32 MB
of memory with one apparent major exception, which I will note
later. The cache is setup write-thru, not write-back. If I
make any other changes to the cache memory configuration, the
boot process fails while trying to uncompress the kernel:
"invalid compressed format (err=1) -- System halted".

2. The second problem has to do with X-Windows once the boot
process gets that far. With 1.3.84, the xterms and other
X-Window applications will start and run without any problem.
With the 1.3.85 and 1.3.86 kernels, it appears that xterms and
other X-Windows application cannot be run. In fact, persisting
with trying to run X-Window apps will cause the X-Window server
to freeze. If my remote terminal is not available, it means
reseting the box.

Anybody seen problems like these?


William M. Perkins Internet -
The Greenwood or -
Commodore is dead. Long lives the Amiga! (AmigaOS/Linux/NetBSD)

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