ZeroShell and Dell

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    I have seen many requests about using ZeroShell on Dell. On my R200, I had to disconnect the internal CD drive before even the live CD could boot.

    It seems that even is the CD drive is SATA and attached to a SATA port, it will be presented as SAS, and then start the problem.

    So far I could not install ZeroShell on the hard disk either, even if the proper RAID driver is recognized/present by default; it’s workling fine on USB, so let it be for the time being.



    My box for ZeroShell is a Dell R200, with RAID controller SAS6, using MPT driver. Disks are configured in RAID 1 (mirror).

    ZeroShell cannot install out of the box; here are the steps I had to perform before I could get it running. As usual, this comes with no guaranty, all I can say is that it worked for me.

    1) I prepared a USB key as described in

    2) I also got script (

    3) I boot ZeroShell from the USB key. At this stage the USB is seen as drive /dev/sda and the hard disk as /dev/sdb

    4) I partitionned my hard disk; size if up to your tastes, my partitions look like:

    root@cs root> fdisk -l

    Disk /dev/sda: 145.9 GB, 145999527936 bytes
    255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 17750 cylinders
    Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes

    Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
    /dev/sda1 1 1306 10485760 83 Linux
    Partition 1 does not end on cylinder boundary.
    /dev/sda2 1306 7833 52428800 83 Linux
    Partition 2 does not end on cylinder boundary.
    /dev/sda3 7833 17751 79662080 83 Linux
    Partition 3 does not end on cylinder boundary.

    5) I made the file systems on the 3 partitions of the hard disk:

    mkfs.ext2 -I 128 /dev/sdb1
    mkfs.ext2 /dev/sdb2
    mkfs.ext2 /dev/sdb3

    Note the -I for the first partition, this is important for grub in a future step.

    6) I copied the contents of the USB key to the hard disk:

    mount /dev/sdb1 /mnt
    cd /boot
    tar cf - --one-file-system . | (cd /mnt; tar xfBp -)
    umount /mnt
    mount /dev/sdb2 /mnt
    cd /cdrom
    tar cf - --one-file-system . | (cd /mnt; tar xfBp -)
    umount /mnt
    mount /dev/sdb3 /mnt
    cd /DB
    tar cf - --one-file-system . | (cd /mnt; tar xfBp -)
    umount /mnt

    7) I installed grub to run from the hard disk:

    mkdir /mnt/boot
    mount /dev/sdb1 /mnt/boot
    grub-install --recheck --no-floppy --root-directory=/mnt /dev/sdb
    umount /mnt/boot

    8) I copied the kernel modules needed by RAID:

    mount /dev/sdb1 /mnt
    cd /mnt initrd.gz open
    cd initrd.gz-image
    cd lib
    mkdir mpt
    cd mpt
    mkdir deps chipsets
    cd deps
    cp /cdrom/modules/ .
    cp /cdrom/modules/ .
    cp /cdrom/modules/ .
    cd ../chipsets
    cp /cdrom/modules/ .
    cp /mnt/initrd.gz-image

    9) I edited /mnt/initrd.gz-image/linuxrc to load the modules:

      for M in  /lib/usb/deps/* /lib/sata/deps/* ; do
    /sbin/insmod $M 2>/dev/null

    # load mpt RAID dependencies in right order
    /sbin/insmod /lib/mpt/deps/scsi_transport_sas.ko
    /sbin/insmod /lib/mpt/deps/mptbase.ko
    /sbin/insmod /lib/mpt/deps/mptscsih.ko

    for M in /lib/usb/host/* /lib/sata/chipsets/* /lib/mpt/chipsets/* ; do
    /sbin/insmod $M 2>/dev/null

    Note that there is a modification in the second for loop.
    I also changed so that the first partition is mounted read-write. I change the line:

    echo "/dev/${CDROM}1 /boot ext2 ro 1 2" >> /cdrom/etc/fstab

    to be:

    echo "/dev/${CDROM}1 /boot ext2 defaults 1 2" >> /cdrom/etc/fstab

    11) I closed /mnt/initrd.gz:

    cd /mnt initrd.gz close
    cd /
    umount /mnt

    12) From the it should boot from the hard disk.

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