grub-0.93 bug

Mr Amit Mehrotra mehrotraamit at
Tue Jan 6 08:21:08 PST 2004

I have posted this on bugzilla but did not see any
response. So I am going to post here as well.
Grub-0.93 if compiled as shown in the book adds a
mem=xxx option to the boot command of linux. This
number is usually wrong. This is a long standing bug
in grub but they are unwilling to correct this. On
machines with < 1GB of memory (i.e., where highmem is
not enabled) this is usually not an issue but in
machines with CONFIG_HIGHMEM enabled, it confuses the
kernel and usually that means that PCMCIA (or some
other PCI/ACPI thing) does not work.

When grub is configured with
--disable-auto-linux-mem-opt it does not put mem=xxx
in the kernel boot option and then linux kernel works

David Hinds (who first pointed and corrected the
problem for me) started a thread on this week's linux
kernel mailing list and that is how I found out that
the kernel gets confused if mem=xxx is given at boot
time *only when* CONFIG_HIGHMEM is enabled not
otherwise. Still I think that grub should *always* be
configured with --disable-auto-linux-mem-opt.

There is no use complaining to grub people because
they have known this problem for years and still
haven't corrected this.


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