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Author Topic: Syslinux and its quirks  (Read 627 times)

Offline Dies Irae

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Syslinux and its quirks
« on: April 07, 2024, 12:10:05 AM »
Thanks - will do.

Did tc-install exist for 3.x? I believe I'll need it eventually, but if not - maybe the version in 4.x works?

both the TUI and GUI install hasn't worked for YEARS, if creating and installling to FAT.
I figured out the exact cause a fat year ago, and shared it in full detail in the tinycore irc forum. Kinda as a test to see if *anyone* there cared to pass along the cause and fix.

the tl/dr is that when it mysteriously stopped working, co-incided with gnu removing the cp1252 (i think) codepage out of the default, I believe (at this moment, from memory) that roughly co-incided with tinycore 4.
TinyCore uses syslinux, syslinux (when created) was slightly more focused on windows users, and so the installer for syslinux on linux used some specific dos-tools, which in turn mimic having disks as 'C:' etc.  This in turn, ofcourse, depends on windows codepage.. which was removed and no longer available by default... and so the dos tools err out, and thus the syslinux fails installing.  The GUI installer ultimately just calls the command-line version by the way, hence both are not working.

I recall there were 2 ways to fix it, but i didn't like either of them: pulling in to many dependencies.. I believe, again from memory, that i felt it was ideal to craft a special dedicated extension as dependency to pull in as little as possible.

While on that subject, when using the syslinux from tinycore, this dostool thing (forgot the exact name) has a known race-condition on *very* fast disks (read: the ramdisk if you were creating an disk-image when running diskless in ram). A sleighty newer version (of a decade ago or so) fixes that.

Offline gadget42

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Re: Syslinux and its quirks
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2024, 04:04:37 AM »
this thread might be thought-provoking...perhaps

https://forum.tinycorelinux.net/index.php/topic,15244.0.html
The fluctuation theorem has long been known for a sudden switch of the Hamiltonian of a classical system Z54 . For a quantum system with a Hamiltonian changing from... https://forum.tinycorelinux.net/index.php/topic,25972.msg166580.html#msg166580

Offline Dies Irae

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Re: Syslinux and its quirks
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2024, 04:31:53 AM »
seems on first sight they tried to mix syslinux files. I know a thing or 3 about syslinux, and can tell you that you can not do that. But more interesting is to explain why:

The bootstrap is 3 stage, it is to be seen as 1 piece of code, that happens to be split in three parts/stages. The first stage (mbr, 512 ex sig and partition table) doesn't have sufficient room to make it search for it's second stage.. it is hardcoded as lba offset into the mbr. Every time you move files around, defrag, whatever, you must (re-)install syslinux, if only to update the hardcoded offsets.
Secondly, briefly prior to compiling, some python (i think, from memory) script creates an unique hash (4 byte) based on the date. This hash, is used to sign/mark/fingerprint ALL syslinux programs, and most if not all parts actually check that hash.
The reason is that various compilers and settings could compile that one (split into 3 files) section differently, and so to guarantee that all parts work with the other parts from the same compilation run, you can not get binaries/files from any other compilation run (short of hacking in matching hash code, which is actually kinda safe for some programs).

By the way, the tinycore folk managed to compile various syslinux parts smaller than the official binary download offers.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2024, 04:34:00 AM by Dies Irae »

Offline gadget42

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Re: Syslinux and its quirks
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2024, 05:31:11 AM »
are there sources for those? interested in further study when time permits. thanks.
The fluctuation theorem has long been known for a sudden switch of the Hamiltonian of a classical system Z54 . For a quantum system with a Hamiltonian changing from... https://forum.tinycorelinux.net/index.php/topic,25972.msg166580.html#msg166580

Offline Dies Irae

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Re: Syslinux and its quirks
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2024, 05:47:45 AM »
upstream: https://repo.or.cz/syslinux.git/commit/81ad566f155fac31089fde69c87059b217e7e9b6

The (recommended) Syslinux 6.3 was first introduced in 7.x (according to my personal appbrowser on steroids), thus we should find compile notes and again source in here:
http://repo.tinycorelinux.net/7.x/x86/tcz/src/syslinux/ (if my tool is working, lol).

« Last Edit: April 07, 2024, 05:53:50 AM by Dies Irae »

Offline gadget42

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Re: Syslinux and its quirks
« Reply #5 on: April 07, 2024, 06:47:36 AM »
quote a snippet from this webpage: https://repo.or.cz/syslinux.git
Quote
SYSLINUX now builds in a Linux environment, using nasm.  You need nasm
version 2.03 or later (2.07 or later recommended) to build SYSLINUX
from source.  See http://www.nasm.us/ for information about nasm.

and then quote a snippet from: https://www.nasm.us/
Quote
Infrastructure Change

On July 1, 2020, the official NASM git repository moved to github.

The previous repository on repo.or.cz is no longer maintained.

github:
https://github.com/netwide-assembler

just an fyi for future forum visitors
The fluctuation theorem has long been known for a sudden switch of the Hamiltonian of a classical system Z54 . For a quantum system with a Hamiltonian changing from... https://forum.tinycorelinux.net/index.php/topic,25972.msg166580.html#msg166580