[syslinux] pxelinux problems with some Fujitsu-Siemens PCs and a solution

Frank Steiner fsteiner-mail at bio.ifi.lmu.de
Mon Aug 9 05:17:53 PDT 2004


I'm not subscribed to the list, so please cc me if you want to reach me.

We've found some interesting problem with some Fujitsu-Siemens PCs using

The PCs are "FS Scenico L" with Athlon XP 1800+ CPUs and Via KT266
chipset. We tried to boot off pxe using pxelinux 2.09/2.10 with several
3com 3c905-* cards. The PCs loaded the kernel but right after
"Uncompressing linux..... Ok, now booting the kernel"
they completely hang. No matter what kernel we used. The network cards
worked in different PCs.

Finally we found the solution: In the bios (PhoenixBIOS Version 4.06)
in "Advanced - Advanced System Configuration" there is one entry
called "BIOS Work Space Location" with two options:

"Expansion ROM Area"  - will keep pxelinux from working as described above
"Top of Base Memory"  - makes pxelinux work without any problems

The explanation for "Top of Base Memory" says: "Optimizes for maximum
available space for BIOS-extensions as present on SCSI cards.etc"

So it looks like some of this space is needed for pxelinux to load the
kernel, although etherboot was able to work with both settings.

Maybe this helps some other people having problems with pxelinux too
search for similar options in the BIOS!


Dipl.-Inform. Frank Steiner   Web:  http://www.bio.ifi.lmu.de/~steiner/
Lehrstuhl f. Bioinformatik    Mail: http://www.bio.ifi.lmu.de/~steiner/m/
LMU, Amalienstr. 17           Phone: +49 89 2180-4049
80333 Muenchen, Germany       Fax:   +49 89 2180-99-4049
* Rekursion kann man erst verstehen, wenn man Rekursion verstanden hat. *

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