> I am currently using a manually bootstraped Debian (DebianSlug/LE)
> mounting the rootfs over NFS. There are several upgrade procedures to
> Debian/NSLU2 (etch) available (e.g. on
> http://www.nslu2-linux.org/wiki/), but all assume the rootfs on a
> external disk (usually /dev/sda1) and provide a special image for this
> case. The etch installer on the other hand does not support an
> installation to a NFS partition (not surprising). Does anyone has an
> idea on
> (a) how to do an upgrade using the existing NFS partition (in this
> case an appropriate firmware image is needed, not assuming rootfs on
In my case, I installed to a flash drive (sda1), removed the flash
drive from the NSLU2 and plugged it in to the fileserver where it is
mounted as /slugroot and NFS-exported.
I had to make some minor changes e.g. editting /etc/fstab, but it was
> (b) how to change the apex configuration of a Debian/NSLU2
> installation to boot from a NFS partition (I already have a slug with
> an installation on a USB stick for playing).
Well what do you really mean here? I don't think that anyone has got
their Slug to actually boot (i.e. load its kernel) across the network,
though there may be support for that in some future version of APEX
(someone please correct me if I'm wrong). So the kernel is still in
the Slug's flash. Then, in a default Debian install you will have a
large initramfs also stored in the internal flash. This initramfs
contains lots of modules and the Intel network microcode and I believe
that it is sufficient to mount the eventual root partition over NFS;
all that you need to do is to pass the right kernel command line
parameters. There is Wiki documentation describing how to change the
command line that APEX passes to the kernel.
If you want to boot without the initramfs for some reason it all gets
more complex, mostly because of the microcode. If you really want to
do this, tell me why and I'll write some more.
(One thing that I have not yet got to work is having multiple slugs use
the same NFS-mounted read-only root filesystem. Has anyone done that?)