Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-features (57 mails)

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[openFate 305312] OpenSUSE <= 11.1 Alpha 2 don't install on SD card
  • From: fate_noreply@xxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 24 Sep 2008 19:49:23 +0200 (CEST)
  • Message-id: <feature-305312-3@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Feature changed by: Matthias Eckermann <mge@xxxxxxxxxx>
Feature #305312, revision 3
Title: OpenSUSE <= 11.1 Alpha 2 don't install on SD card

- openSUSE-11.2: New
+ openSUSE-11.2: Evaluation
Requester: Important

Requested by: Harald Welte <haraldwelte@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Partner organization:

[Please note that I'm working for the CPU+Chipset maker VIA and this is
an actually important feature for the 'netbook' class of devices in the
coming months]
Recently, BIOS vendors have been starting to implement a 'boot from SD
card' feature, much like they have added 'boot from USB memory stick'
some years ago.
The only SD-card host controller that I've seen this implemented for is
SDHCI compliant host controllers.
While this is a nice feature to support, for most systems it is just a
gimmick and not something neccessarry.
However, there are hand-held devices such as netbooks in the pipeline
which do not have any other mass storage device. No hard disk and no
IDE-attached flash disk or the like. They just have one (more likely
two or more) SD card slots and you install and store not only your data
but the entire operating system on that SD card.
Furthermore, there are products like Samsung moviNAND which are
basically a SDcard in a BGA package that can be soldered onto a PCB. So
from a protocol and software point of view it is a SD card, but it is
mechanically soldered onto the board. Such device have gained some
popularity in ARM-based designs, but we'll likely see them in the x86
world, too.
To make this happen,
The distribution installation initrd needs to
1. include and auto-load the sdhc.ko and sdhci_pci.ko kernel modules 2.
create the /dev/mmcblk* device nodes as per udev/hotplug events
The actual distribution installation program needs to
1. recognize /dev/mmcblk* as block devices that can be used as target
device 2. use a grub-install or similar program that can discover the
bios drive number to /dev/mmcblk* device name mapping
I have outlined the full details at

openSUSE Feature:

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