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Recommended update of the SLES7 installation system


(Last modified: 20DEC2002)

solutions Recommended update of the SLES7 installation system SuSE Linux Maintenance Web (bb24496640887db431f788da02061337)

Applies to

Product(s): SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 7 for IBM zSeries

Package: sles7-s390x-images-2002-11.tar.gz
Release: 20021220
Obsoletes: none


This updated Installation System includes a Linux kernel and initird for installation with EMC storage arrays and other configurations where the Kernel does not properly detect devices needed for installation.For example, after the initialisation of the DASD driver /proc/dasd/devices contains 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.
Further fixes are improved IUCV and CTC initialization. The updated installation system also includes IBM code drop 2002-08-16/Aug16 2002 of the OCO modules. Please refer to the SuSE Maintenance Web article "Security update for Linux Kernel (k_deflt)" ( for detailed information on required microcode levels and APARs/PTFs.
The installation kernel 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 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.
Detailed Problem and Fix descriptions
The following is a copy from the IBM release notes for IBM code drop 2002-06-12 (linux-2.4.17-s390-3), refering to this problem:
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.
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.
  • run the command gpg -o sles7-s390x-images-2002-11.tar.gz.asc --decrypt sles7-s390x-images-2002-11.tar.gz to extract the tar ball.

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