Observation #1: PMON is a POS (and that's not "point of sale terminal")
- Why serial console only gets the firmware boot time messages?
- Why can't I look at all those messages scrolling by into oblivion?
Observation #2: Booting Linux via a hex input panel, if possible, would probably be simpler.
- The numbering thankfully doesn't change from different USB ports.
- Curiously enough, 'load' work faster than 'initrd'. I timed it against loading the same file. Expect to run to Voltage and back for a coffee before the initrd completes...
- Without initrd, I get a hang after the i8042 probe.
- With initrd, I get the MIPS equivalent of a data abort from the firmware.
- ...PMON can't handle an initrd.
- I decided to chain-load through GRUB2, but there are no GRUB2 prebuilts.
- There is a GRUB2 prebuilt for the Yeelong, but this one just flashes "press ESC to skip loading on-disk grub.cfg", while ignoring both the USB HID and the serial.
- There are no "newer" firmwares you can test chain-boot.
There was something already present on the disk (rays Linux), but it didn't boot with the default boot options. Manually doing -
PMON> load /dev/fs/ext2@wd0/boot/vmlinux-2.6.18-fl-v1.02 PMON> g init=/bin/bash...got me far enough to change the password so I could use the system, copy the kernel and initrd from the USB stick, and add a boot.cfg entry (root=/dev/sda1 console=/dev/ttyS0)
Of course, still can't boot the Arch Linux build. I get a bunch of unaligned kernel access followed by a page fault.