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Gentoo on the JVC Subnotebooks (XP3210 - XP7260)
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Joined: 17 Jan 2004
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2004 1:04 am    Post subject: Gentoo on the JVC Subnotebooks (XP3210 - XP7260) Reply with quote

hi dear reader,

this is a short guide to install Gentoo on the JVC subnotes from the XP-3210 up to the XP-7260 without the expensive and otherwise useless special jvc pcmcia-cdrom (MP-CDX1E).

Update 2004-06-03: adding infos for Gentoo & the JVC´s hardware

Whats the Topic ?
these subnotes have no CD/DVD and will not boot from usb-devices other then floppy-drives which makes installing other OS´s as the preinstalled Windows-XP a bit difficult. the only other option is the expensive jvc cdrom mentioned above :-(

the new 73x series can boot from other usb devices so installing another OS (like Gentoo) is pretty straightforward there. not to tell of the new 8xx and 9xx series, which got a full sized dvd in the same form-factor :o

what you need:
  • the subnote ;-)
  • an external USB cdrom-drive
  • full expanded memory would not hurt for kde/gnome
  • a Gentoo install cd
  • a recent version of loadlin.exe

what to do:
the only problem we have is the initial boot of the Gentoo installation cd. as the subnote will not do this from USB-cdrom we have to find other ways.
one way would be booting via NFS.
the other way (this one) is to bring the Gentoo installation to the internal harddisk and boot from that copy.
fortunatly the subnotes carries a hidden msdos-partition for their XP-rescue system with plenty of space we could use.

the usual partion-scheme on the subnotes is (mine for example):
/dev/hda1: 2 GB FAT bootable MS_DOS rescue partition
/dev/hda2: 12 GB (FAT or NTFS) bootable Windows partition
/dev/hda5(6): 6 GB FAT data partition (extended)

the exact sizes may depend on your configuration/your harddisk´s size.

the rescue system will not touch other partitions then hda2, so depending on your needs you could use hda5/6 for your linux installation or you could reserve an additional FAT partion for your data and/or Windows-Linux filesharing.
here we will use the complete exetend partition, as myself will remove Windows in the long run anyway :-)

do NOT delete files or change the rescue-partion in any other way as described - you could damage your recue-system - and who knows when you will need it ;-)
i will take no responsibility ... :twisted:

if you have your windows installation on FAT you could leave the rescue partition untouched and create the boot-directory on your windows-partition. but you must boot the rescue-system to get loadlin running.

Bootstraping the Gentoo Installation

ok, lets jump:
  1. boot Windows XP
  2. connect your USB cdrom
  3. use the Windows XP management console to assign a drive letter to the hidden msdos rescue partition (backup ?!? see note below)
  4. create a directory gentoo on the now not-so-hidden msdos partition
  5. copy the content of the isolinux directory to the created directory
  6. copy loadlin.exe to the created directory
  7. make a copy of isolinux.cfg to gentoo.bat
  8. edit gentoo.bat, use the second isolinux-definition (label gentoo-nofb), delete the rest and add loadlin - it should look like this:
    loadlin gentoo initrd=gentoo.igz root=/dev/ram init=/linuxrc looptype=zisofs loop=/zisofs cdroot

  9. reboot and press ALT-F8 quickly when the JVC logo appears to boot the rescue system
  10. quickly press SHIFT-F5 when MS-DOS boots to skip the rescue system
  11. retry it ;-)
  12. when you got the DOS-prompt change directory to the above created subdir eg gentoo
  13. boot the install system with the gentoo.bat script; linux should boot, find your usb-cdrom with the gentoo installation cd and continue from there
  14. partion as you like, leave the rescue partion untouched !!!; best is to delete the data-partition (hda6) and create a swap (i used 200MB), a linux and optionally a FAT partition for sharing
  15. you may have to reboot after partitioning, repeat steps i. and j. (and k. ;-) )
  16. install gentoo as usual

there are some error messages when the gentoo installation system bootstraps but nothing critical

it could be a good idea to backup the complete rescue system to another system anyway, so do this before (after you assigned a drive letter to the hidden msdos-partition).
in case of emergency you could always boot some floppy-based os with networking (DOS or linux) and rebuild your rescue system that way.

Gentoo Linux Kernel 2.6.6 on the JVC

for my xp-3210 with the focus on gnome i used that make.conf:
CFLAGS="-O3 -march=pentium3 -pipe -fomit-frame-pointer"
USE="-kde -qt -java gnome gtk -acl -samba pam -php -mysql -postgres -apache acpi"

needed time for bootstrap, emerge system etc.
this was needed by my xp-3210 - to give you some rough estimates:
  • emerge sync - 10 min
  • bootstrap stage1 - 3,5 hrs
  • emerge system - 3 hrs
  • first kernel build - 30 min

hardware - lets look what we´ve got here:
0000:00:00.0 Host bridge: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] 630 Host (rev 31)
0000:00:00.1 IDE interface: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] 5513 [IDE] (rev d0)
0000:00:01.0 ISA bridge: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] SiS85C503/5513 (LPC Bridge)
0000:00:01.1 Ethernet controller: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] SiS900 PCI Fast Ethernet (rev 82)
0000:00:01.2 USB Controller: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] USB 1.0 Controller (rev 07)
0000:00:01.3 USB Controller: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] USB 1.0 Controller (rev 07)
0000:00:01.4 Multimedia audio controller: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] SiS PCI Audio Accelerator (rev 02)
0000:00:01.6 Modem: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] AC'97 Modem Controller (rev a0)
0000:00:02.0 PCI bridge: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] Virtual PCI-to-PCI bridge (AGP)
0000:00:09.0 CardBus bridge: Ricoh Co Ltd RL5c476 II (rev 88)
0000:00:09.1 CardBus bridge: Ricoh Co Ltd RL5c476 II (rev 88)
0000:00:09.2 System peripheral: Ricoh Co Ltd: Unknown device 0576
0000:01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS] 630/730 PCI/AGP VGA Display Adapter (rev 31)

all straightforward to configure in the kernel except:
  • the soundcard - you need the Trident driver for that
  • the unknown device "0576" - its the built-in sd-card-reader (no linux driver known)

so we need to configure the kernel for the following highlights:
  • PIII
  • ACPI*
  • PCMCIA & Yenta compatible bridge
  • ATAPI*, IDE*, IDE-Disk* & SIS5513*
  • Networking & SIS900/7016
  • Event Interface, PS/2 Mouse
  • AGP*, SIS chipset*, DRM/DRI*, SIS Video Cards*
  • FrameBuffer*, Vesa* & SIS acceleration*
  • ALSA & Trident PCI driver
  • USB & OHCI

("*"-things should go into the kernel, the remaining drivers as modules)

needed base packages
  • hotplug - makes life all easier
  • alsa-utils
  • xfree

alsa, networking & usb works right out of the box (with hotplug ;-))

console framebuffer
if you got "SIS acceleration" compiled in the kernel append

to your bootloaders kernel line.

xfree on the LCD
the JVC´s LCD can display a resolution of 1024x600.
use a XF86Config File like that:
Section "ServerLayout"
        Identifier     "JVC XP-3210 on LCD"
        Screen         "JVC Screen"
        InputDevice    "JVC Builtin Keyboard" "CoreKeyboard"
        InputDevice    "JVC Builtin Mousestick" "CorePointer"
        InputDevice    "USB Mouse"

Section "Files"
        RgbPath      "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/rgb"
        ModulePath   "/usr/X11R6/lib/modules"
        FontPath     "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/misc/"
        FontPath     "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Speedo/"
        FontPath     "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Type1/"
        FontPath     "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/CID/"
        FontPath     "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi/"
        FontPath     "/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/100dpi/"

Section "Module"
        Load  "extmod"
        Load  "dri"
        Load  "dbe"
        Load  "record"
        Load  "xtrap"
        Load  "glx"
        Load  "speedo"
        Load  "type1"

Section "InputDevice"
        Identifier  "JVC Builtin Keyboard"
        Driver      "keyboard"
        Option      "XkbModel" "pc105"
        Option      "XkbLayout" "de"
        Option      "XkbVariant" "nodeadkeys"

Section "InputDevice"
        Identifier  "JVC Builtin MouseStick"
        Driver      "mouse"
        Option      "Protocol" "auto"
        Option      "Device" "/dev/mouse"

Section "InputDevice"
        Identifier  "USB Mouse"
        Driver      "mouse"
        Option      "SendCoreEvents" "true"
        Option      "Protocol" "ImPS/2"
        Option      "Device" "/dev/input/mice"
        Option      "ZAxisMapping" "4 5"

Section "Monitor"
        Identifier   "JVC Builtin LCD"
        VendorName   "JVC"
        ModelName    "XP-3210 Builtin LCD"
        VertRefresh  50-75
        HorizSync    30-90

Section "Device"
        Identifier  "JVC Builtin SIS Graphics"
        Option     "MaxXFBMem" "12288"
        Driver      "sis"
        VendorName  "Silicon Integrated Systems [SiS]"
        BoardName   "SiS630 GUI Accelerator+3D"
        BusID       "PCI:1:0:0"

Section "Screen"
        Identifier "JVC Screen"
        Device     "JVC Builtin SIS Graphics"
        Monitor    "JVC Builtin LCD"
        DefaultDepth 16
        SubSection "Display"
                Depth 16
                Modes "1024x600"

Section "DRI"
        Mode 0666

Power Management
... speedstep, acpi, suspend to disk will follow soon ...

...when the music is over ... :-)
ok, hope someone can use this.
mail me under tja at tjasoft dot com or drop a personal note here if you´ve got any questions. on demand i will open a support thread in Installing gentoo.

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