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Building Embedded Linux Systems by Karim Yaghmour

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Using LILO with Disk and CompactFlash Devices

Because there is already ample documentation on the installation, configuration, and use of LILO, I will cover only its specific use in embedded PC-like systems. Specifically, I will provide the instructions to use on the host to install LILO on a storage device meant to be used in the target.

The installation of LILO on a target's storage device requires the use of the removable storage setup as explained in Chapter 2. In this scenario, the target's storage device is removed from the target and connected to the host's own hardware to be programmed. Hence, the target's storage device is controlled by the host's operating system like any other host device. The target's storage device is therefore seen as an extra storage device for the host. It can be seen, for example, as a secondary IDE disk (/dev/hdb) or as a primary SCSI disk (/dev/sda). Regardless of the way it is seen by the host's kernel, LILO needs to be used in a specific way to install itself on this secondary storage and not on the host's boot media, as is the default.

As we discussed in Chapter 8, CF devices are quite peculiar in this regard, because they can be seen on the host as a SCSI disk (/dev/sd X) when accessed through a USB CF reader, while being seen on the target as an IDE disk (/dev/hd X) when accessed through a CF-to-IDE or CF-to-PCMCIA adapter. The configuration file example I provide below takes care of this issue by using the appropriate BIOS and kernel ...

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