Saturday, February 13, 2010

Getting EBOX 1.4 (Ubuntu Server) to work with a VIA C3 CPU

Recently, I decided to change my home NAS from FreeBSD (FreeNAS) to a Linux-based solution. The hardware that I am running is a modified Chilibox from the now defunct Chili Systems. Under the hood is a Via EPIA PD10000 Mini-ITX motherboard with a VIA C3 EDEN class CPU running at 1 GHz. This is a very power efficient setup- perfect for an always-on home server. However, after attempting to install EBOX 1.4 as (well as Ubuntu Server 8.04.4, on which EBOX is based) led me to an interesting boot error:
" Starting up . . .
This kernel requires the following features not present on the CPU:
0:6 0:8
Unable to boot - please use a kernel appropriate for your CPU. "

Looking for information about this issue brings up the following bug report with status "Won't fix":

So, the system is installed, but the kernel won't boot. Is the machine useless?? NO!
In fact, the only thing you need to fix the situation is already in your possession- the rescue mode of your install disc.

Fix instructions:

  • Install EBOX 1.4 (or Ubuntu Server) as normal.
  • Get to the point where the disc ejects and the computer asks you to reboot. At this point, you can either reboot without the disc to verify that the problem still exists or leave the install disc in the drive.
  • Allow the live cd menu to come up, and choose "Rescue a broken system".
  • Respond to all of the prompts (setting up the keyboard, etc.)
  • The system will ask you for your root partition. Select it and then you should get a root shell prompt at the bottom of the screen
  • You need to install the "linux-generic" kernel to get the system working again. Type apt-get install linux-generic .
  • Reboot the machine, and you should have now got past the wrong CPU message and finish the setup process.