Author Topic: LS441D: Definitive YES/NO answer for possible Linux Debian instead of stock FW?  (Read 6303 times)

kanidrive

  • Calf
  • *
  • Posts: 3
There are many references to other Linkstation models able to run Linux Debian as an OS in lieu of the stock Buffalo Firmware. This would be very useful for a means of extending the lifetime of the aging Linkstation LS441D product line. Yet there seems to be no direct reference found after searching the web with better search engines than "the big G".

There are better search engines than "the big G" - eg. QWANT, Bing, DDG, Ecosia, and many others. Try them. You'll see. Some of them even pay YOU or benefit great causes, unlike "G".

After attempting to post to a few threads that contain tutorials or guides on how to install Linux Debian on other specific models of Linkstation NAS devices, there still has been no clear and definitive answer on whether or not this has ever been done on a LS441D successfully.

Has anyone reading this post been able to accomplish installing Linux Debian (preferably Ubuntu, perhaps CentOS, but vanilla Debian would be just fine too) on a 4-bay Buffalo Linkstation LS441D?

Please share your answers and experience, either way (yes or no).

1000001101000

  • Debian Wizard
  • Big Bull
  • *****
  • Posts: 743
  • There's no problem so bad you cannot make it worse
Howdy,
     I'm pleased to say that as of the last couple of days the answer is a definitive yes. I've been working for a while now on adapting the process others have written about for getting various flavors of linux running on the ls421de with a custom compiled kernel. As of a few months ago I've been able to modify that process to make it work on Debian Stretch with Debian's vanilla armhf kernel. Apt can even update the kernel using flash-kernel to handle generating the uImage's similar to how mainline support for the V-series devices works.

Once I got that working I adapted the device tree to work on the ls441d, ls421de, ls420d and ts1400r (I went a little overboard on eBay).

I've got a partial write up of the installation process put together and am currently looking for a suitable place to host it and associated device trees (dts/dtb files). I'll probably set up a github account for this purpose in the coming days. 

Let me know if you'd be interested on trying it out, I'd appreciate someone other than me walking through it and providing feedback before I publish anything.

Hope to talk to you soon.



Materials I've referenced in the process:

LS421DE dts and build process examples:
https://github.com/tohenk/linkstation-mod/commits/master

dts examples (that I couldn't make work) for the ls441d, ls421de and ls420d
https://sites.google.com/site/shihsung/88fxxxx-soc

ssh-based Debian install image to simplify boot strapping a debian image
http://ftp.nl.debian.org/debian/dists/stretch/main/installer-armhf/current/images/network-console/

another example of packaging debian kernels and bootstraping images
https://github.com/rogers0/OpenLinkstation

Norbiato

  • Calf
  • *
  • Posts: 1
I would be very glad to know about it as soon as it works.
I'm so sick about this default limited OS... the shares are Ok, but the backup process... Oh man, it sucks, and, everytime that i need to sync data with an usb disk.. I NEED TO DO IT REMOTELY... ie, use a workstation as bridge (network traffic) to copy from raid to usb disk over local lan instead of.... local nas hardware...
CRAZY

1000001101000

  • Debian Wizard
  • Big Bull
  • *****
  • Posts: 743
  • There's no problem so bad you cannot make it worse
I'm in the process of writing everything up and making the process as simple and reliable as possible. I setup a GitHub page to house everything, feel free to give it a try:

https://github.com/1000001101000/Debian_on_Buffalo


Eastmarch

  • 1500 Lb Water Buffalo
  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 328
That's just awesome.

Moved to main thread and given out a custom title
« Last Edit: September 12, 2018, 05:07:42 pm by Eastmarch »
**A single copy of data, even on a RAID array, is NOT a backup! Hard drive failure is not a question of IF, but WHEN! Don't take my word for it, take Google's!**

1000001101000

  • Debian Wizard
  • Big Bull
  • *****
  • Posts: 743
  • There's no problem so bad you cannot make it worse
The method I've put together works just fine on the LS441D running the latest firmware. There is no need to modify U-Boot, downgrade the firmware or change any of the boot parameters. In fact, there is no need to modify the device in any way. You can switch back and forth between Debian and the stock the stock firmware without issue (I do this frequently as part of my testing).

You don't even need to change the partitions on the device, the guide I posted on github describes how to install Debian using the devices existing partitions/raid devices.

Feel free to give it a try: https://github.com/1000001101000/Debian_on_Buffalo

Let me know if you have any questions. I'd love to have some more folks try this out and give me feedback to refine the process, particularly if you're familiar with Toha's work and are already comfortable that process.

laksjan

  • Calf
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Getting error while partitioning the disk...
May 10 22:25:27 kernel: [ 1020.942705] oom-kill:constraint=CONSTRAINT_NONE,nodemask=(null),task=debconf,pid=1237,uid=0
May 10 22:25:27 kernel: [ 1020.942789] Out of memory: Killed process 1237 (debconf) total-vm:19652kB, anon-rss:14396kB, file-rss:2592kB, shmem-rss:0kB, UID:0 pgtables:28kB oom_score_adj:0
May 10 22:25:27 kernel: [ 1020.979027] oom_reaper: reaped process 1237 (debconf), now anon-rss:0kB, file-rss:0kB, shmem-rss:0kB

Please help

1000001101000

  • Debian Wizard
  • Big Bull
  • *****
  • Posts: 743
  • There's no problem so bad you cannot make it worse
Is this under Debian?

"Out of memory" presumably means whatever you're doing ran out of memory. Your best bet would be to enable swap.

laksjan

  • Calf
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Hello,
Yes, this is with Debian... I do have swap memory allocated.. I manually created the partitions as 8GB boot, 16GB proc & another 8GB swap. But, the stock firmware recreates the partitions as 1GB, 2GB & 1GB respectively. Can you please let me know if I can change it before running the installer or before copying the new images. Or, can I change this during the installation & how?
Appreciate your help in this regard.

1000001101000

  • Debian Wizard
  • Big Bull
  • *****
  • Posts: 743
  • There's no problem so bad you cannot make it worse
can you show the output of:
Code: [Select]
free -h

laksjan

  • Calf
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Hello,
Thank you for quick response... Here is the out of free -h
~ # free -h
                       total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
Mem:         123604       24588       69752          60       29264       69148
Swap:                  0           0           0

Surprised that the swap is not showing up. Please let me know  how can i enable swap space here... Tried to add swap space from the shell window before starting the install, but again got the OoM error..
# dd if=/dev/zero of=/swapfile bs=1024 count=1048576
Output:
Jan  1 00:13:07 kernel: [  787.518404] oom-kill:constraint=CONSTRAINT_NONE,nodemask=(null),task=debconf,pid=1219,uid=0
Jan  1 00:13:07 kernel: [  787.518485] Out of memory: Killed process 1219 (debconf) total-vm:8912kB, anon-rss:3596kB, file-rss:2580kB, shmem-rss:0kB, UID:0 pgtables:16kB oom_score_adj:0
Jan  1 00:13:07 kernel: [  787.532359] oom_reaper: reaped process 1219 (debconf), now anon-rss:0kB, file-rss:0kB, shmem-rss:0kB

1000001101000

  • Debian Wizard
  • Big Bull
  • *****
  • Posts: 743
  • There's no problem so bad you cannot make it worse
Please post:
Code: [Select]
lsblkand
Code: [Select]
cat /etc/fstab

laksjan

  • Calf
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Hello,
Please see the output as  you requesed. The lsblk command was not found...

~ # lsblk
/bin/sh: lsblk: not found
~ # cat /etc/fstab
devpts          /dev/pts        devpts  defaults        0       0
tmpfs           /run            tmpfs   nosuid,size=10%,mode=755        0       0
proc            /proc           proc    defaults        0       0
sysfs           /sys            sysfs   noauto          0       0
~ #

1000001101000

  • Debian Wizard
  • Big Bull
  • *****
  • Posts: 743
  • There's no problem so bad you cannot make it worse
oh, this is inside the installer? Anything you do in that installer shell happens in memory, not in the target system. That's why it ran out of memory that time around.
I believe your problem should resolve itself it you specify a swap partition during the install.

Here is an example of what a disk layout for a device using raid:
https://github.com/1000001101000/Debian_on_Buffalo/blob/master/.images/17-all_volumes.png

also, what model is this?

laksjan

  • Calf
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Hello,

This is a LS-WTGL/R1. Also, I have configured this to RAID 0. Since, I am testing this, I am using a 500GB & a 160GB drives. Please let me know if this will cause any issue?
Also, the error happens while the installer is checking the drives. I will try on another machine with a lot of memory (20GB) and let you know.
In the meantime, please let me know if I need to check anything else...
thank you and stay safe.