Gentoo MythTV

25. 08. 08

quick roundup about how to install gentoo on the epia m9000 or similar cmov-less c3 boards

Filed under: Main — Tags: , , , — niko86 @ 3:03

since the emerging is on fast-forward right now (thanks to icecream/crossdev)
i thought it might be a good idea to sum up what i have done to get gentoo running on an epia m9000 board featuring a cmov-less c3 ezra (933mhz).

you should at first make sure that you are able to efficiently cool the c3 and the northbridge since it becomes really hot in a closed case with these small 40x40mm fans.
i read about a maximum temperature of about 75°C.
ok, now get yourself the gentoo minimal install cd for x86.
Here is the Link.

boot into the cd (no boot options needed)
i assume you are using dhcp so you do not need to care about network settings right now.
in case you want to test it, here is a neat one-liner:
[ $(ping -c1 http://www.google.com -W1 -w1 | awk '/received/ {print $4}') ] && echo "ONLINE" || echo "OFFLINE"
let’s you easily know wether you are online and wether dns resolving works.

ok now it’s time to partition your harddisk, take a look at what we got right now:
fdisk -l

we need a boot, a swap and a root partition.
i like to do it this way:
boot = 32M (space to store different kernels for testing around)
swap = half the size of the RAM
root = what’s left

fdisk /dev/yourDevice

well, no need to explain really as fdisk is kinda self-explaining.

after you set up your disk, it is time to make some filesystems.
i like to use ext2 for the boot and reiserfs for the root partition.
choose what you like best.

mke2fs /dev/sda1
mkreiserfs /dev/sda3
mkswap /dev/sda2
swapon /dev/sda2

now we want to mount our new partitions, so we can use them and finally chroot.


mount /dev/sda3 /mnt/gentoo
mkdir /mnt/gentoo/boot
mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/gentoo/boot

now we want to download a portage snapshot and a stage3 image.

cd /mnt/gentoo
wget http://gd.tuwien.ac.at/opsys/linux/gentoo/releases/x86/2008.0/stages/stage3-x86-2008.0.tar.bz2 \
&& wget \
http://gd.tuwien.ac.at/opsys/linux/gentoo/snapshots/portage-latest.tar.bz2 && \
tar xvjpf stage3-*.tar.bz2 && \
tar xvjf portage-latest.tar.bz2 -C /mnt/gentoo/usr

you should choose another mirror which is geographically near to you.
http://www.gentoo.org/main/en/mirrors2.xml
notice how i chained the commands together, this way we do not have to sit there and wait, enter some commands, wait…
we just enter this chain and everything is fine.

ok proceed with the make.conf located in /mnt/gentoo/etc/make.conf
set your options and save.
(more…)

22. 08. 08

getting my hands dirty!

Filed under: configuration — Tags: , , , , , , , , — niko86 @ 1:01

after several hours of trying different myth distributions and livecds, i got to the point where i just put the gentoo minimal install cd into the drive and start compiling away.

unfortunately the c3 i got on the m9000 board is an older one which labels itself as i686 but is missing the cmov instruction.
that’s why most of the distributions won’t work because they can’t tell that it is in fact an i586 processor and is lacking the cmov instruction.
so all you get are some nasty segfaults…

so got back to good’ol gentoo:
this is what i used for CHOST and CFLAGS:


CHOST="i386-pc-linux-gnu"
CFLAGS="-mtune=i586 -march=c3 -m3dnow -mmmx -Os -pipe \
-fomit-frame-pointer

just specified mtune as well because some people reported about some nasty errors where the compiler looked for the mtune or the deprecated mcpu flag, didn’t find it and just assumed an i686 which resulted in…. you guessed it: segfaults

i will put the kernel config for the ezra c3 m9000 board online later so if someone comes here while searching for this it will save them alot of time….

it actually was not that easy to find out that the older ezra / samuel c3’s do not support cmov instructions but the nemehia and newer c3’s do so.
the fact that a sticker on my board said “nemehia” did not make it any easier.

another conclusion i’ve come to is that the morex cubid 2600 is not a particularly good case when it comes to cooling and air circulation.
it has some air intakes on both sides and two 40x40mm fans sucking air out behind the harddrive mount, but the mounting bracket for the pci card and the slot for the slim drive in combination with the IDE cables are doing a good job of preventing some good airflow.
after some hours of compiling, i measured 70°C CPU and 50°C Harddrive Temperature, the Northbridge was too hot to touch and so was the RAM.

So i quickly “engineered” a new cover for the case out of some cardboard, did a 120x120mm cut out and put a nice 120mm fan in it.
“mounted” the cardboard cover instead of the original case cover and now i got some good airflow, i also did disable the 2 40×40 fans to stop the noise they where making.

well, im right at compiling the basic needs of the system and all i can say is: roughly 1ghz and a tiny Cache are not exactly speeding up the process of compiling.
it takes ages to compile….

hopefully this baby will be capable of being a nice frontend….

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