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Recommended update of the SLES7 installation system


(Last modified: 05AUG2002)

solutions Recommended update of the SLES7 installation system SuSE Linux Maintenance Web (07b3da95a333d2478c87853e0d77eb7e)

Applies to

Product(s): SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 7 for S/390 and zSeries

Package: 7.2-s390-images-2002-11.tar.gz
Release: 20020805
Obsoletes: none


This updated Installation System includes fixes for several kernel related problems.
Problems with DASD recognition
The kernel does not properly detect DASD under several circumstances, for example when using EMC storage arrays. Subsequently installation of the SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 7 is not possible on the disks affected. For example, after the initialisation of the DASD driver /proc/DASD/devices would contain something like
101a (none) at (94:0) is dasda:unknown
and the kernel IPL log shows messages similar to
SPID - Device 101A on Subchannel 181A, lpm 01, became 'not operational'
This problem has been fixed by correcting the path verification in the common I/O layer of the kernel.
For a detailed Problem and Fix description the following copy from the IBM release notes for IBM code drop 2002-06-12 provides some explanations:
Bringup of ECKD devices.
Symptom: Kernel panic "Unable to mount root" or inaccessible ECKD devices.
Problem: Large device ranges trigger a race condition in the DASD initialization for ECKD devices. If the completion interrupt for the format detection CCW arrives before the loop over all devices of the range is completed the affected DASD is not completety initialized.
Solution: Fix retry condition in the device startup code.
Common IO Layer: path verification.
Symptom: Linux fails to bring up devices after printing "became 'not operational'" messages fro a certain path.
Problem: SetPGID returned -EAGAIN to DevicePathVerification on deferred condition code 3 for a path, but DevicePathVerification didn't try SetPGID down the remaining paths and returned with an error.
Solution: Fix return code handling in DevicePathVerification.
OCO modules
This updated installation system contains the latest
OCO modules. For detailed information about the required APARs / PTFs,
please refer to the "OSA-Express QDIO performance enhanced in
consolidated Linux under z/VM environments" document at
Broken LVM tools
Due to faulty binutils on build time the LVM tools on the installation system of the update CD crash with a segmentation fault. The new installation system contains correctly linked LVM tools now.
General kernel issues
The Linux kernel for this installation system also contains fixes for the following problems:
  • fix for CTC not restarting after I/O errors
  • fix for initialization problems in the dasd discipline drivers update to IBM Code Drop 2002-11-25 which fixes these problems:
    • Linux hangs after a device is gone
    • Linux hangs after a tape attach or attached tape is not recognized
    • Linux fails to detect devices after 'not operational' messages
    • fix for initialisation problems when bringing up IUCV
  • fix for possibly incorrect TLB flushing under extreme circumstances
  • fix for SMP race in msgrcv (can trigger only with extensive IPC usage)
  • fix for SMP race in locking code of the NFS client
Using the new installation system
The new OCO modules have some requirements regarding installed APARs / PTFs. For detailed information about the required APARs / PTFs, please refer to the "OSA-Express QDIO performance enhanced in consolidated Linux under z/VM environments" document at
The installation kernel (vmrdr.ikr for z/VM or tapeipl.ikr for IPL from tape or SE) and the installation RAM disk initrd included in this patch should be used for the installation. In addition, the first installation CD should be copied onto the installation server's disks and the file suse/images/k_delft.rpm should be replaced by the corresponding file from the SuSE Maintenance Web article "Security update for Linux kernel (k_deflt)" ( to successfully finish the installation.
This is not a regular package but a tar ball that can be extracted for example by using the program Winzip on Windows or gunzip and tar on Linux/UNIX systems. Its content substitutes the files in suse/images on the first CD.
Note: The file provided at the location below is an ASCII armored PGP signed file. To extract the tar ball from this file, please perfom the following actions:
  • install GnuPG if you haven't already. On SuSE Linux, it is contained in the package gpg. Other recent Linux distributions come with a ready to use GnuPG package as well. GnuPG is also available for many other operating systems, including Microsoft Windows. Please refer to for information on how to get GnuPG for your operating system.
  • rename the file 7.2-s390-images-2002-11.tar.gz to 7.2-s390-images-2002-11.tar.gz.asc
  • run the command gpg -o 7.2-s390-images-2002-11.tar.gz --decrypt 7.2-s390-images-2002-11.tar.gz.asc

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