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 Forum index » House Training » Bugs ( Submit bugs )
"Bootflash Install Puppy to USB" - boot problem in lupu-528
Moderators: Flash, Ian, JohnMurga
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PsyBaba

Joined: 11 Feb 2007
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Sat 25 Feb 2012, 07:45    Post subject:  "Bootflash Install Puppy to USB" - boot problem in lupu-528
Subject description: Found at least 2 bugs in Puppy flash installer
 

So... I have been struggling with installing Puppy lupu-528 and later lupu-528.004 to a USB thumb drive 2 whole afternoons and found 2 (or maybe 3) bugs. I will deal with one bug at a time, because there are a lot of questions I have about each one.

Here comes the first one:
When installing to the USB thumb drive with Barry's "Bootflash Install Puppy to USB" http://bkhome.org/blog/?viewDetailed=00599 I get just a "boot error" when trying to boot from it. When installing to the same drive with same partitions (made by the flash installer) with the "Universal installer" the drive boots fine.

I have tried all options of the "Bootflash Install Puppy to USB" (Superfloppy, Combo, USB-HDD,...) and nothing worked. When installing with the "Universal installer" I left the default options untouched (so, no fancy MBR or repartitioning with Gparted) and it did! ... where's the trick?

What does the "Universal installer" do, that "Bootflash Install Puppy to USB" doesn't?[/url]

Last edited by PsyBaba on Wed 07 Mar 2012, 10:45; edited 3 times in total
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bigpup


Joined: 11 Oct 2009
Posts: 4613
Location: Charleston S.C. USA

PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2012, 15:04    Post subject:  

Just to make sure. You are talking about "Bootflash Install Puppy to USB"?
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When I was a kid I wanted to be older.... This is not what I expected Shocked
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PsyBaba

Joined: 11 Feb 2007
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Wed 07 Mar 2012, 11:06    Post subject:  

bigpup wrote:
Just to make sure. You are talking about "Bootflash Install Puppy to USB"?


Sorry, maybe I wasn't specific enough - I'm talking about Barry's BootFlash... I saw now, that the entry on his blog is from 15 Mar 2009, so maybe BootFlash is a little outdated and not fully compatible with Lupu?

I suppose that must be the case because of the second bug I wanted to write about. For my USB setup I need to use the ComboFormat (hard/zip/floppy chameleon), because it's the only working on some computers I need to use Puppy on. When I format my USB key in this format using BootFlash and then install Puppy using Universal installer Puppy starts the booting procedure, but then stops with the message "Kernel panic - not syncing: attempted to kill init!"

I searched the internet and troubleshooted the error and got to the conclusion, that BootFlash makes the install partition too small, leaving only 2Kb free space on it. Looks like some procedure during boot needs more space, because resizing the first partition by a few Mb's kills the Kernel panic bug Surprised

Looks like some install files grew by some Kb's by now and BootFlash's ComboFormat option doesn't take this into account. I guess the partitioning specifications are written in a config file, where they could be easily changed, but I don't know Puppy's viscera well enough to find out where this is specified - do you have a clue?

Anyway the first bug still remains a mistery to me. Rolling Eyes
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bigpup


Joined: 11 Oct 2009
Posts: 4613
Location: Charleston S.C. USA

PostPosted: Wed 07 Mar 2012, 19:05    Post subject:  

Are you using the version of "Bootflash" that comes with Lupu 528?
Is this the one that needs to be looked at? The "Bootflash" that is included in Lupu 528.
It should be a newer version, than the reference you give in Barry's blog.

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I have found, in trying to help people, that the things they do not tell you, are usually the clue to solving the problem.
When I was a kid I wanted to be older.... This is not what I expected Shocked
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PsyBaba

Joined: 11 Feb 2007
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Thu 08 Mar 2012, 10:18    Post subject:  

Yep, that's right! And I'm using it straight out of pfix=ram environment to make sure nothing is messing things up.

Even if it is a newer version it looks like it's not adapted to Lupu... otherwise it wouldn't make a primary partition (in ComboFormat) so small not to let initrd.gz make it's work during bootup, resulting in Kernel panic.

And I'm not the only one having this problem:
http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=64367&start=15 Here ellgor tried the same and had similar results:
Quote:
For info, Bootflash created two partitons, 128Mb - 7.9Gb respectively with no problems in booting or reading back of the save file, so flushed with success I did the same procedure to the original 8Gb stick, no go, same problems as before and when the save file was accessed it threw up a load of error messages ending up with : kernel panic - attempt to kill init etc.
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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
Posts: 7047
Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Sat 10 Mar 2012, 21:05    Post subject:  

The bootflash script has had many changes since 2009.

I have bumped the 128M first partition up to 256M, but have not tested it.

Here is my blog post:

http://bkhome.org/blog/?viewDetailed=02740

There is a link to the latest version of the bootflash script.

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PsyBaba

Joined: 11 Feb 2007
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Mon 12 Mar 2012, 11:40    Post subject:  

Cool!

This weekend I spent some time trying to bump it up to 133MB, by modifying this line
Code:
dd if=/dev/zero of=${WKGPATH}/image128m bs=1024 count=131072 #128MB

to this
Code:
dd if=/dev/zero of=${WKGPATH}/image128m bs=1024 count=136192 #133MB

but then I noticed it formatted the 133MB partition in fat32 instead of fat16, so I understood the thing is more complexly connected to other parts of script and after some time gave up! :S

Well 256MB will be more than enough for any future needs - maybe a bit of overkill? (I will stay with my manually created 133MB, it works just fine) Smile

Anyway thank you bigpup for your collaboration and to you Barry for modifying the script as I don't understand it so well to know what should be modified (except that bs=). I will try it out to see how it behaves and if it resolves also the other bug I encountered.
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PsyBaba

Joined: 11 Feb 2007
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Thu 22 Mar 2012, 13:48    Post subject:  

Sorry I was busy... so it took some time to test it.

Well the results left me with mixed feelings:
The old BootFlash #110130 with ComboFormat option set
1. Created a 128MB FAT16 primary partiton (too small for Lupu)
2. After rebooting gave me "boot error" (not on all computers, but just on some of those I need to work on)
3. After installing with Universal Installer without touching the deafult settings (no repartitioning and no fancy MBR) Puppy booted OK on all tested computers.

The new BootFlash #120311 with ComboFormat option set
1. Created a 256MB primary partiton, but it made it FAT32 (like when I tried to manually edit the script). I don't know if this is a bug, but as I can read it from the script it was supposed to be FAT16.
2. After rebooting gave me again the usual "boot error"
3. After installing with Universal Installer without touching the deafult settings Puppy again booted OK.

I have tried the script on 3 different USB sticks to make sure the "boot error" doesn't have something to do with a quirky stick. But when testing them on different computers I found out it has something to do with the way computers see the installation on the stick (I suppose it's BIOS fault). But as with Universal Installer the ComboFormat install works on all tested computers I suspect there is something it does better than BootFlash.

EDIT: I did a mistake when testing... it doesn't work at all (on none of the tested computers). It gives a black screen with the message:
[/code]
HDD EBIOS
boot error
[code]
right at the beginning - nothing is shown before this message.
Is there anyone else willing to test this out?


And I found out that BootFlash does some funny things to partitons:
1. The old BootFlash #120311 created 2 partitions which were seen by Gparted as FAT16 and FAT32, but cfdisk reports them both FAT16!
[code]
Partition Table for /dev/sdb

First Last
# Type Sector Sector Offset Length Filesystem Type (ID) Flag
-- ------- ----------- ----------- ------ ----------- -------------------- ----
4 Primary 0 262143 32 262144 FAT16 (06) Boot
1 Primary 262144 1980415 0 1718272 FAT16 (06) None

Partition Table for /dev/sdb

---Starting--- ----Ending---- Start Number of
# Flags Head Sect Cyl ID Head Sect Cyl Sector Sectors
-- ----- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ----------- -----------
1 0x00 0 1 128 0x06 63 32 966 262144 1718272
2 0x00 0 0 0 0x00 0 0 0 0 0
3 0x00 0 0 0 0x00 0 0 0 0 0
4 0x80 1 1 0 0x06 63 32 127 32 262112
[/code]
2. The new The new BootFlash #120311 creates 2 partitions which are seen by Gparted as FAT32, but gpart reports first partition as FAT16 and second as FAT 32!
Partition Table for /dev/sdb
[code]
First Last
# Type Sector Sector Offset Length Filesystem Type (ID) Flag
-- ------- ----------- ----------- ------ ----------- -------------------- ----
4 Primary 0 524287 32 524288 W95 FAT32 (0B) Boot
1 Primary 524288 1980415 0 1456128 FAT16 (06) None

Partition Table for /dev/sdb

---Starting--- ----Ending---- Start Number of
# Flags Head Sect Cyl ID Head Sect Cyl Sector Sectors
-- ----- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ----------- -----------
1 0x00 0 1 256 0x06 63 32 966 524288 1456128
2 0x00 0 0 0 0x00 0 0 0 0 0
3 0x00 0 0 0 0x00 0 0 0 0 0
4 0x80 1 1 0 0x0B 63 32 255 32 524256[/code]
bootflash#110130_partitions.png
 Description   The old BootFlash #110130 partitions
 Filesize   36.2 KB
 Viewed   1192 Time(s)

bootflash#110130_partitions.png

bootflash#120311_partitions.png
 Description   The new BootFlash #120311 partitions
 Filesize   33.21 KB
 Viewed   1641 Time(s)

bootflash#120311_partitions.png

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bigpup


Joined: 11 Oct 2009
Posts: 4613
Location: Charleston S.C. USA

PostPosted: Tue 03 Apr 2012, 01:00    Post subject:  

Barry has posted some info on working on Bootflash.
http://bkhome.org/blog/?viewDetailed=02767

_________________
I have found, in trying to help people, that the things they do not tell you, are usually the clue to solving the problem.
When I was a kid I wanted to be older.... This is not what I expected Shocked
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PsyBaba

Joined: 11 Feb 2007
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Tue 03 Apr 2012, 12:06    Post subject:  

Cool, I will follow that blog, to see how the issue is getting resolved. I also saw Barry's note "none of this work applies to Lupu", so I will wait till he releases an improved version and then test it on Lupu...
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PsyBaba

Joined: 11 Feb 2007
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Sun 24 Nov 2013, 17:08    Post subject:  ComboFormat still buggy.  

I hate to resuscitate a topic so old, but bootflash ComboFormat is still buggy (and getting buggier) Confused

Today I needed to make a bootable USB stick and saw, that bootflash still makes a fat32 partition instead of a fat16 one, like in the pictures I posted in my previous post.

Moreover when plugging in the USB stick formatted in ComboFormat, now PCManFM shows me three partitions (sdb, sdb1 and sdb4), instead of two like before (sdb1 and sdb4). Mounting sdb or sdb4 shows me the same contents.

Just to make myself more clear: the problem is that creating a bootable USB stick with bootflash ComboFormat gives me a boot error after reboot (not on all PC's). While If I use Puppy universal installer to install to sdb4 (where bootflash would install puppy), I can get the bootup process till Syslinux error: Could not find kernel image.

I can get puppy to boot on all PC's only by using the old bootflash 110130 to create the partitions, but editing the line
if=/dev/zero of=${WKGPATH}/image128m bs=1024 count=131072 to count=262144.
Then I have to change the sdb4 partition from fat32 to fat16 by using fdisk and mkdosfs with -F 16 option. And then I have to install puppy using Puppy universal installer to make it bootable.

So apparently there are more things that don't work, but maybe repairing bootflash ComboMode to format the sdb4 partition to fat16 format again would resolve more of them. Does anybody have a clue why changing the sdb4 partition size line in bootflash would make it fat32?
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