IRIX Installation from Hard Drive

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At a minimum the method described on this page requires verification, and validation or refinement of the specific steps outlined below. Even after that's been done, use at your own risk!

Installing IRIX from a Hard Drive

You have one SGI workstation or server and have acquired another one, but the new machine does not have a working installation of IRIX on it. Since the machines aren't similar models, you can't just pull a working system disk from one and boot the other machine from it. However you can prepare a suitable drive in one machine and complete an IRIX installation in the other, if the following steps work as claimed:

You can install IRIX from a hard drive. The tricky part is bootstrapping it into the actual install, but here's what I would recommend:

1. Partition the new HDD on the working IRIX system using fx -x

2. Create an XFS filesystem on the root partition of the HDD (dksXdYs0)

3. Copy the IRIX media to a directory in that partition, giving it a name that does not conflict with any standard UNIX directories (i.e., /IRIX)

4. Use mkboottape to extract the actual miniroot image "mr" from "sa" is the dist dir of your overlays or install tools CD

5. Copy the mr image to the swap partition of the HDD (dksXdYs1) using dd

6. Copy the contents of the volume header from the working system's drive to the new HDD's volume header using dvhtool (and remember what sash is called for step 10)

7. Mount the swap partition (fs type EFS) and copy the appropriate kernel (unix.IPzz) to its root (from the dist/miniroot dir)

8. Put the new HDD in the new system

9. Turn on the system and go to the PROM console

10. boot -f dksc(0,1,8)sash64 (using sash name from step 6) -- should boot into sash

11. boot -f dksc(0,1,1)unix (using unix name from step 7) -- should start the miniroot install


This page was inspired by this response to this thread about installing IRIX using dissimilar models of SGI workstation/server.

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