FW: Tyan serial console - how?

Matthew Kent matt at bravenet.com
Tue Nov 5 16:41:31 EST 2002


> What must be typed in the serial console to break into the BIOS?

I've been working with tyans 2466 for the past couple of months.

I've found the easiest way to get into the bios is to disable quickboot
mode (yes it will count every meg of ram) and use ANSI terminal
emulation. If you hit F2 it will drop to bios after the ram count. 

At 9600bps the quickboot was too quick to jump into the bios most of the
time and I'd have to reboot from grub :)

> Once in the bios there are squares (single letter size "pixels")
> dancing around the screen like "snow" on a TV.  Presumably the
> serial line protocol isn't set up quite right.  What should it
> have been?

The 'snow' is just the bios redrawing itself constantly, whereas when
you use a serial console in linux, it only has to draw each character as
you type.

> Is it possible to use the serial console to break into a
> Tyan node which has locked up in linux?  By this, I mean
> something similar to the Sun console or the VMS console,
> where you can get in "underneath" the OS and force a
> reboot without having to cycle the power or hit the reset switch.

I believe you're stuck if the box isn't reachable via console. We bought
a remote power boot unit from APC for this.


Matthew Kent \ SA \ bravenet.com \ 1-250-954-0854

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