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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Hardware
PAE 32bit PCs - detection during boot
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gcmartin


Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 4496
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Mon 16 Apr 2012, 11:59    Post_subject:  PAE 32bit PCs - detection during boot  

This problem is closed for it was already solved before it as asked

At the beginning of 2011, this community set about the task of understanding issues of RAM recognition when running a 32bit PUPPY. Specifically, they investigated and solved this problem so that, now, ANY PC with a processor capable (PAE) can run certain Puppy distros no matter how much RAM their PC(s) have. The Puppy distro development community understood how this gives Puppy an advantage of many other distro techniques for 32bit Linux and quickly jumped on it as they (Pemasu, Barry (4 different distros lines), 01Micko, and many other distro developers, as well) build, for community use, distros allowing community use PCs from 512MB to 64GB

Also, in community testing, we found that the PCs ruing PAE with Puppy workload appear to be running a bit faster than other non-PAE versions of the same distro.

BUT, THERE'S A CAVEAT!
A few rare Intel and AMD CPU lines, since1995, were manufactured without the PAE ability. In the many tests and implementations I have done with family, colleagues and friends, I have NOT run into this problem. But, there have been reports (albeit rare) that some community members have reported problems.

For the most part, 95% of us will never see this issue when running 32bit PAE enabled PUPs on either 32bit or 64bit PCs. But, on those rare occasion, those attempting to use their distro might be met with a surprise where it is NOT clear to the user what the problem is.

Question to our community
Is there a way such that when a PAE distro is booting, it can tell if the PAE feature is implemented?

Reason
This would be a great distro feature so that it is clear at boot-time that the distro he is booting will work with the hardware built-in to the PC in use. And, the message would be clear eanough that most/all users would know that there is a problem Assuming the following 2 things:
  • The Alerting message is the same for each PUPPY distro
  • That it alerting is very similar to how a 64bit distro alerts a user of incompatibility.

  • Is anyone aware of a Puppy technology to do this?
  • Or is anyone aware of where this kind technology addition should occur in the boot process?


I am not a distro developer. So this is being asked of the community for evaluation and addressing if they can.

It would make it easy for users to take advantage of the distro developer contribution and it would be consistent for the development community; not to mention that users wont be giving up in frustration or the issue of unnecessarey problem reporting

Ideas?

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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 9353
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Mon 16 Apr 2012, 12:08    Post_subject:  

Here is a more practical question. How many Puppy users have ever done something on their computers that required more than 4 GB of RAM?
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gcmartin


Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 4496
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Mon 16 Apr 2012, 13:25    Post_subject:  

I respect the question.

But, the reality is that if I have a computer, any computer, and I use PUppy, which is a RAM based system, I would like my OS to take the best advantage of all of my RAM (like PUPPY does) when it incorporates the RAM into its filesystem for OS and user benefit.

It not about whether someone is "usage measuring" or not. Its about using what you have to the fullest advantage for the Puppy OS as it services the user.

User benefit.and reduced developer support....That's "practicality"!

The work that everyone did before was beneficial as well as practical.

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jemimah


Joined: 26 Aug 2009
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Location: Tampa, FL

PostPosted: Mon 16 Apr 2012, 13:35    Post_subject:  

Sure the user can tell.

If your cpu doesn't support pae the kernel tells you to go pound sand and refuses to boot.
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gcmartin


Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 4496
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Mon 16 Apr 2012, 13:45    Post_subject:  

jemimah wrote:
Sure the user can tell.

If your CPU doesn't support PAE the kernel tells you to go pound sand and refuses to boot.
Thanks @Jemimah.

I was not aware since I had not witnessed the problem.

I just remembered some indicating that on a couple occasions someone had reported they had run into problems booting PAE kernels. So, I was merely asking in this thread out of ignorance of the kernel reporting (same kind of message as it does when someone tries to use a 64bit kernel on a 32bit only PC).

This problem is closed for it was already solved before it as asked

In other words, if the PAE distro doesn't give a message of "missing CPU feature" at boot-time, your distro WILL USE ALL OF YOUR RAM FOR YOUR BENEFIT!

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