Commit f0d2f5ce authored by Leigh B. Stoller's avatar Leigh B. Stoller
Browse files

Add to FAQ entry on custom OSs about what we can/cannot do for people.

parent adfb268c
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<li><a NAME="SWS-7"></a>
<h3>Can I run my own Operating System?</h3>
Yes! You can run your own OS on any of the PCs (the Sharks do not
support custom operating systems as this time, however you can run
<a href = "">OSKit</a> kernels
on the PCs or the Sharks). Each of the PCs is partitioned so that
the 4th DOS slice (about 6GB) is unused and available to be loaded
with whatever OS you want to run. The only requirement is that
your image contain a proper DOS boot record in the first sector
(first sector of the 4th DOS slice) which can be invoked by the
DOS Master Boot Record in the first sector of the disk. There are
other minor requirements which are detailed in the <a
href="tutorial/tutorial.php3#CustomOS">Custom OS</a> documentation
page. The procedure for creating and installing your custom OS are
also described in this document.
Yes! You can run your own OS (or a customized version of an Emulab
supported OS) on any of the PCs. You can also run <a href =
"">OSKit</a> kernels on the
PCs. Each of the PCs is partitioned with two DOS partitions large
enough to hold the typical OS installation. The 1st and 2nd
partitions are each 3GB. The 3rd partition is 500MB, and is
labeled as Linux Swap. The 4th partition is the remainder of the
disk, and varies in size depending on the pc type. We recommend
that you use the 1st or 2nd partition; using the 4th partition
will restrict the number of machines that you can run your OS on
since it varies in size. Note that you must leave the MBR (Master
Boot Record) in sector 0 alone, and that your custom partition
must contain a proper DOS boot record in the first sector.
Please note that while users are free to customize their disks and
install their own operating systems, Emulab staff will not be able
to offer more than encouragement and advice! We cannot install the
OS for you, and we cannot load CDROMS, floppy disks, or tape drives!
We <em>do</em> provide an easy way for you to boot FreeBSD from a
memory based filesystem (MFS) so that you can more easily work
with the disk (in case it is not possible to install your OS on a
live disk). Beyond that, you are pretty much on your own!
Many users had great success with customizing an Emulab supported
OS (FreeBSD or Linux), and then creating a disk image that is
autoloaded when the experiment is swapped in. We strongly
encourage people to use this approach whenever possible! There is
more information available in the <a
href="tutorial/tutorial.php3#CustomOS">Custom OS</a> section of
the <a href = "tutorial/tutorial.php3">Emulab Tutorial.</a>
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