2. Preface

This Mini-Howto was written in order to help people who want to run Linux on their SunPCi Coprocessor Card. Please note that there are many ways to accomplish this, depending on your needs and intent. I will descibe how I got it to work, and hint at other options where possible. In the future I might include the successes of others.

2.1. General Overview

The SunPCi card was obviously meant to be used with either DOS (Caldera OpenDOS is shipped with it) or an OS from the Microsoft Windows family. Since I realized that I would only be using these kind of OS-es once in a while, I started thinking about putting the SunPCi card to use in a more familiar fashion. Since it has an Intel ship on it, Linux will run on it. There will be no support for this however. There are no drivers for Linux like there are for DOS and Windows. Be aware that certain things will not work!

Before I scare everyone away from reading further, let me quickly state what does work.

This Howto is based on my experience setting up Debian Linux with a 2.4.x kernel on my SunPCi-IIpro card (with Intel Celeron 733MHz processor). Things may be different (especially setting up the root directory), for other Linux distributions, however the concepts should still remain the same.

Update: This Howto deals with version 2.3.x of the SUNWspci2 Solaris package only. This is the software needed to drive the SunPCi-II and SunPCi-IIpro cards. Sun now ships the SunPCi-III (based on a Mobile 1.4-GHz AMD Athlon XP 1600+ processor) with SUNWspci3 software. As of version 3.2 Redhat Linux is listed as a supported OS. The SUNWspci3 software comes with various Redhat install floppies. Since I do not own a SunPCi-III card, I am not sure how this works, but it is supported so you can always file a SunSolve bug if it doesn't.
You can download the latest version of the SUNWspci3 software here.