SUMMARY: Moving boot disk from Sparc4 to Sparc5

From: Igor Kolker (
Date: Tue Aug 04 1998 - 10:37:05 CDT

First I would like to thank those who responded:
  David Young
  Daniel Ratto
  Matthew Stier
  Michael Hill
  Sunil Naik
  Bill Hathaway
  Michael J. Connolly
  Marco Greene

Original Q:

On Thu, 30 Jul 1998, Igor Kolker wrote:
> Hi,
> I have a 500MB boot disk with Solaris 2.6 3/98 installed. This disk
> was built on a sparc 4. I need to put this disk into a sparc 5. When I
> try to boot the 5 with this disk ts starts to boot but goes to single
> user because it cant run fsck (cant open device /dev/rdsk/c0t3d0s0).
> When i run format it says no disks found. I assume there is some
> bootloader/kernel/driver diff between the 4 and 5. Is there a way to
> install these from the cd without reinstalling to whole OS.

Solution I used:

I have determined that the inability to mount the root filesystem
when moving between the sparc4 and the sparc5 has to do with the
bus-derived pathnames for the disk devices on the esp controller.

The sparc4 has pathnames of this form:

while the sparc5 has pathnames like this:

Needless to say, the major and minor device numbers are different as

I was able to get a sparc5-installed disk to run on a sparc4 by gtar'ing
the /devices and /dev directories from a sparc4, moving the directories
out of the way on the sparc5 disk, and extracting the device files for
the sparc4. I also had to copy over a sparc4 /etc/path_to_inst file
which contains the hardcoded pathnames for all devices on the system.

(note: if you try this for yourself, remember not to move /dev on the
root disk of a running system; this will cause it to crash. I did it
while booted diskless over the net.)

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