[Bioclusters] Linux on Xserve, anyone?

Tim Cutts tjrc at sanger.ac.uk
Wed Aug 8 02:53:42 EDT 2007

On 7 Aug 2007, at 8:12 pm, Chris Dagdigian wrote:

> YellowDog Linux was the "go to" OS for Linux on PPC systems but a  
> quick check of their website seems to indicate they are not  
> offering YDL for the Intel Macs.
> I've had no problem using Parallels to install and run various  
> Centos Linux installations and Fusion has been getting some pretty  
> positive reviews.
> I have not tried to install Linux on bare metal Apple boxes yet and  
> if I get my hands on a woodcrest Xserve I can guarantee that I'll  
> be loading the seed version of the new OS X Server release  
> candidate rather than Linux. The forthcoming OS release from Apple  
> seems pretty fantastic (only tested the Server OS not the client yet).

I haven't tried it either, but I don't see why it shouldn't work.  If  
I were the OP I'd just stick a Debian 4.0 CD in one and have a go.   
The only tricky part might be the boot loader; I don't know whether  
the Etch installer will recognise that it needs to use ELILO rather  
than grub on these machines.  I think it probably will Do The Right  
Thing; after all, it installs fine on MacBook Pro, and the same boot  
loader is needed on those.  Plus, ELILO is the standard boot loader  
on other architectures that use EFI, such as most Itanium-based  
hardware, and Debian works fine on those, too (witness my success  
installing Etch on an SGI Altix yesterday).

Hmm - on closer inspection it looks like the elilo package has not  
been built for the amd64 architecture, so perhaps not:


it looks like it's built for i386 and ia64 only.  So you might  
initially have more luck installing the 32-bit OS than the 64-bit  
one.  *shrug*.  You might want to ask on the debian-amd64 mailing  
list.  They might have some ideas.


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