[lug] new distro

Ryan Kirkpatrick linux at rkirkpat.net
Tue Oct 8 18:51:13 MDT 2002

On Mon, 7 Oct 2002, chris wrote:

> On Mon, Oct 07, 2002 at 10:51:15AM -0600, David Morris wrote:
> > Yes, there are a few exceptions if you want to use one of
> > the architectures that is less supported for Linux such as
> > Alpha, or (lately) Sparc (note *Sparc*, not *UltraSparc*).
> > But if you are using one of these machines, you already know
> > you are in for less then perfect compatibility with
> > everything under the sun.
> (no pun intended, i assume?  suns under the sun..)

	Yea, that is a fun pun. As I have stated it a few times, Linux
runs on nearly every architecture under the sun, including Sun. :)

> i was actually just wondering what the state of sparc and ultrasparc
> linux is these days?  about 2-3 years ago, i was carefully following
> the status of ultrasparc linux and using an ultra distro on some other
> (non-ultra) sparcstations.  i got the impression that development
> kinda slowed on the distro at least (if not the kernel, go davem!)..

	I am running Debian on a whole bunch of Sparcs, everything from
Sparc Classics/LXs to Sparc 10s to a Sparc 20 with dual SM71
processors. As far the distribution goes, everything works fine, just make
sure to recompile OpenSSL for SparcV8 (Debian compiles for SparcV7),
unless you like waiting minutes for an SSH2 login.
	As for the kernels, that is a tougher question. Kernel 2.2.19
runs pretty solid on all the Sparcs, only RAID support is broken. For the
2.4 series, I have heard that it works fine on single processor machines,
but has a tendency to fall over on multi-processor systems. So, as long
you don't need RAID and are willing to use a 2.2 kernel, Linux runs just

> anyone using a recent distro on sparc or ultra hardware?  i have
> some that i'm thinking about sticking in long term storage but could
> pull out in the next couple weeks if there's something worthwhile to
> run on it (solaris 2+ not being it, and sunos, well, it was good in its
> day...)

	Now, ultra is a different story. The 2.4.x kernel is apparently
pretty stable all around on those systems. It is the Sparc32 platform's
kernel support that has suffered. We need an uber-kernel-hacker to take
interest in the platform (DaveM has switched to just UltraSparc support
:( ).
	Anyway, hope this is of use. TTYL.

|   "For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain."                    |
|                                            --- Philippians 1:21 (KJV)   |
|   Ryan Kirkpatrick  |  Boulder, Colorado  |  http://www.rkirkpat.net/   |

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