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Warning: don't flash fastboot rom over your existing BIOS Before Reading this!!

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  • Warning: don't flash fastboot rom over your existing BIOS Before Reading this!!

    Hello all,

    I was over at viaarena and found this posting and thought it was extreamly usefull as far a what to expect after flashing the fastboot to your board. I have an MII board that I thought I fried but Im not so sure at this point. This article was posted by Toneloco12 Please see below:

    yesterday i had a little success in booting from th CF-Slot on my MII-6000 Board but at the moment i am not shure if this is very useful. My intention is to run Windows XP embedded on the Board.

    I startet with a 256Mb CF-Card connectet to the normal IDE Bus with a CF-to-IDE Adapter. In this case the Card act's as a normal Harddisk. This works very well but is not what i realy want. As you all, i want to boot from the onboard CF Adapter.

    After that i decided to test the fastboot rom 2.03 and here is what i figured out.

    Warning: don't flash fastboot rom over your existing BIOS

    buy a new flash rom 39SF020A and flash the PCMCIA version of fastboot. In Germany you can get it from they can also flash it for you. Start with the debug version because it outputs debug info on the serial port. Not on the screen !

    fastboot is not a bios. The screen keeps dark and without a proper os-image nothing happens. Fastboot is a kind of bootloader for os-images there is no user interaction. The boot-mechanism is completely different from a normal bios. It loads a kernel-image from the card to ram and jumps to this ram-image.

    What i have testet:

    1. Build a linux kernel with everything disabled except PCMCIA, GENERIC-IDE, VIA-IDE, RAMDISK, CONSOLE
    2. convert the kernel image to an elf-image with mkelfimage (see docs in
    3. prepare the cf-card. Format with ext2 or ext3 (ext3 not tested) and copy the elfimage to /boot/vmlinuz-m2

    fastboot loads and executes the kernel. At the moment everything ends up in a kernel panic unable to mount root fs but i think thats a problem of the kernel. For the first try i was very satisfied.

    Remaining Problems:

    - fastboot only detects my lexar pro card. None of the sandisk cards are recognized and i don't know why because they work on the cf-to-ide adapter.

    - what comes next ? If you want linux then you are nearly done but how boot xp embedded. I think the only way is that somebody has to write a loader for Windows SDI Ramboot Image (have a look at microsoft articles).

    Hope that helps

  • #2
    Not taking my own advice

    Ok, So there it is, Iv flashed the MII with the BIOS_R using the standard bios flashing utility. It seemed to flash fine, then asked to reboot, after rebooting I get not much at all. At this point all I can assume is that it is working and I just do not have a good boot image. Anyone have any experiance with this? Anyone know how I could verify if it is even posting? I have anouther via board I could swap the bios out with if I had too. Any suggestions would be appriciated.


    Help Me !!