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#1 Re: Installation » Ascii installer image? » 2017-11-16 02:28:51

"nomodeset" turns out not to be a good idea on this machine because it interferes with starting X.  Instead, I found that the blank-screen problem also goes away if I disable "Load Legacy Option Rom" in the BIOS settings.

fdisk shows the eMMC drive as /dev/mmcblk0 and then the partitions are, as you say, /dev/mmcblk0p1 (the EFI partition), /dev/mmcblk0p2, and so on.

I'm not still looking for assistance on this - I ended up going back to Slackware, but may look at Devuan again at some point in the future.

#2 Re: Installation » Ascii installer image? » 2017-11-14 18:11:34

Further to that - it looks like the black-screen issue is because I need to boot the kernel with the "nomodeset" kernel command-line option.  Discovered while making attempts with Slackware; it would likely also be helpful with the Devuan and Refracta images but I haven't explored them further yet.

#3 Re: Installation » Ascii installer image? » 2017-11-14 17:41:21

Thanks for the suggestions!  The devuan desktop-live UEFI ISO boots successfully but cannot see the eMMC drive.  All the others on the list load the kernel and then a few seconds into the boot process, the screen goes blank and the machine crashes (no response to such things as pressing CapsLock).  It looks powered down, but is not, because pressing the power button doesn't wake it; only after holding down the power button for several seconds to really power it off, can I reboot.

#4 Installation » Ascii installer image? » 2017-11-13 16:28:55

Replies: 6

Is there such a thing as an Ascii installer image?  If so, where can I find it?

I'm trying to install on a Dell Inspiron 11 netbook, which has an eMMC drive as its main built-in storage and a BIOS that wants to use UEFI - the UEFI can maybe be disabled but it's not clear doing so actually helps with my problem.  The Devuan Jessie installer cannot see this drive.

So with Devuan Jessie apparently a non-starter, I tried installing Slackware, whose installer kernel can boot up and see the drive, but some parts of its installation scripts are buggy with respect to EFI; it installs a system but not a valid boot loader.  I attempted to work around that by manually reproducing the steps the installer should have taken to get the kernel into the UEFI boot menu, and I got as far as having the installed kernel on the eMMC drive come up and immediately panic, unable to mount the root partition.  Apparently ELILO could see the drive but the kernel Slackware had installed couldn't, even though it was supposed to be the same kernel from the installer that had been able to see the drive.  I've tried recompiling a new kernel (in the Slackware installation on the netbook's eMMC drive, mounted live from the Slackware installer - the installation works except for being unable to boot itself) but so far I haven't found a set of options that works.

My next thought was to go back to Devuan - which had been the distribution I wanted to try in the first place - but use Ascii instead of Jessie.  Net searches indicate that Ascii may have a kernel recent enough to see the drive.  But I cannot find any downloadable installer image for Ascii and am not sure one exists.  All the discussion I can find of installing Ascii seems to involve installing Jessie first and then upgrading it, and that's a non-starter with the Jessie installer unable to see the drive.  So what I think I really want is an Ascii installer.  Not a path to Ascii that goes through installing Jessie.

On disabling UEFI:  so far I haven't been able to get it to boot from the eMMC in that state; it's possible I screwed up the "bootable partition" flag and I'll look into that, but even if that is the only reason I couldn't boot from eMMC with UEFI disabled, the kernel installed by Slackware, and the kernel on the Jessie installer, will still be kernels that cannot see the eMMC drive.  So I think my only hope for disabling UEFI to be helpful would be if it allowed me to avoid the installer bugs in Slackware and get a friendlier process for trying other Slackware kernels.

Is my only Devuan option to install Jessie on some kind of removable media (like another USB drive), upgrade that to an Ascii installation on the removable media, and then somehow bootstrap it into an Ascii installation on the eMMC drive?  Might it be possible to boot with the Slackware installer (which is the only process I've found that gets me to a Linux prompt that can see the eMMC drive) and live-mount the Devuan Jessie installer, so that I can run that under a kernel that is able to see the drive instead of its own kernel?

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