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#51 Sha0

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Posted 20 August 2009 - 04:33 AM

Hee hee hee! This is some of the worst code I've ever written. Functionality first, refinement later! (Especially with a busy job.)

Attached is a preview driver. It likely has bugs. It spews out debugging messages to an attached WinDbg. It's derived from the fantastically FOSS GPL WinAoE driver by V.

In my test, I had a MEMDISK image with a FAT partition with SYSLINUX installed onto it. Syslinux has chain.c32 for chaining, so... I booted the MEMDISK, which then chained to an actual HDD in the computer, which booted WinXPSP2 with this driver, which found the MEMDISK image as an E: drive. :whistling:

I would expect that this driver can be incorporated into a BartPE or small WinBuilder image (HDD only for now, please, ODD emulation has not yet been implemented) and it should boot! Actually, if you have a Windows XP installation in less then 4 GB and you have enough RAM, you should be able to boot the full Windows, I would think.

This is not an NTBOOTDD.SYS-style driver. Simply add it in as a boot-time driver (Start = 0).

You must use MEMDISK 3.82 (from Syslinux 3.82) the included or a very recent MEMDISK with this driver. Seriously.

Any testers?! Some success stories will certainly be motivating to continue working on this.

- Shao Miller

Attachment removed -- Obsolete due to newer version; check post #1 for download link.

#52 bilou_gateux

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Posted 20 August 2009 - 12:12 PM

Hee hee hee! This is some of the worst code I've ever written. Functionality first, refinement later! (Especially with a busy job.)

Any testers?! Some success stories will certainly be motivating to continue working on this.

- Shao Miller


Can we have a howto/tutorial or however some details/data/docs to test it?
I read you're busy!

Details about menu.lst, and reg file of settings of the driver to add in registry would be fine.

#53 Sha0

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Posted 20 August 2009 - 01:54 PM

So to prep a MEMDISK image, I'd suggest:

  • Revisiting my link; the file's changed to the full development archive (including build) include a couple more files, like an .INF (I tried to post the full development archive, but it's too big!)
  • Have your little Windows XP installation on an HDD
  • Use Add/Remove Hardware to add the WinAoE driver (instructions in ReadMe.txt, I think)
  • Snapshot the little Windows installation as an HDD image
  • Boot that image with MEMDISK 3.82

Right now, the rather silly MEMDISK "discovery" code takes a look at the previous INT 0x13 hook, so make sure that MEMDISK is the most recent hook in the chain. That is, after booting to your MEMDISK image, be sure that you don't do any other mappings (such as with GRUB4DOS or Syslinux' chain.c32's "swap" option). This code will improve, including plans to support GRUB4DOS-mapped RAM disks (as this thread's title suggests), but it's not there yet. At least this can be played with for now, I think.

- Sha0 Miller

#54 joakim

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 10:26 AM

So to prep a MEMDISK image, I'd suggest:

  • Revisiting my link; the file's changed to the full development archive (including build) include a couple more files, like an .INF (I tried to post the full development archive, but it's too big!)
  • Have your little Windows XP installation on an HDD
  • Use Add/Remove Hardware to add the WinAoE driver (instructions in ReadMe.txt, I think)
  • Snapshot the little Windows installation as an HDD image
  • Boot that image with MEMDISK 3.82


Could you please give a step by step explanation on how to get a windows system to run from ram with this driver?

I have tried the "memdisk raw" way (with v 3.82) with properly made disk images. I have tried with both a PE-build (livexp (2k3)) and an image of a real XP (vm). Neither works and they both crash with bsod ..7B.

That means the issue is with the driver. So I'm wondering how it is supposed to be installed/loaded? I followed the instruction in the readme for the real xp. I notice the virtual machine bsod ...50 on next boot, and the same system booted from image in ram also bsod with ..7B. For the PE-build I applied a registry patch to setupreg.hiv for the stuff under relevant registry hive (HKLM\SYSTEM), as well as loading the driver in txtsetup.sif under [SCSI.LOAD] section, but bsod ....7B here too. The images was 1700 Mb and 450 Mb in size, both ntfs compressed.

It's obviously something wrong and would appreciate some detailed instruction, specifically on how to include/load the driver. Does your driver make use of aoe.exe?

Joakim

#55 cdob

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 12:58 PM

[*]Snapshot the little Windows installation as an HDD image
[*]Boot that image with MEMDISK 3.82

Actually I used a hard disk image (with MBR, layout c=8 h=64 s=32).
There are recovery console files from XP SP2.

Isolinux.cfg

LABEL cmdcons
MENU cmdcons
kernel memdisk
append initrd=cmdcons.dsk raw


txtsetup.sif

[SourceDisksFiles]
aoe32.sys= 1,,,,,,,,3,3
[ScsiClass.Load]
aoe32 = aoe32.sys

Ramdisk.sys is not included. Does aoe32.sys require ramdisk.sys?

Recovery Console does boot, no BSOD 0x7B.
But a BSOD 0x7E, no driver mentioned at BSOD.

#56 Sha0

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 01:57 PM

Oooh, that's awkward. cdob and joakim, I believe that you both have done everything correctly for integration of the driver into your XPs. Yesterday, I tried the Scsi.Load incorporation and noted that my BartPE crashed because NDIS.SYS was not loaded. This is due to the fact that I've not yet abstracted away the AoE parts of WinAoE to only be used if needed! So basically, NDIS.SYS must be loaded... The easiest way to do that in a full installation is to have a NIC installed.

joakim: I would have guessed that your VM image had a NIC installed. So if you still bluescreened, I need to know why. Since you are using a VM, you could add
/SOS /DEBUG /DEBUGPORT=COM1 /BAUDRATE=115200
to your BOOT.INI, as well as the following to your VM's .vmx file (which assumes VMware):

serial0.present = "TRUE"

serial0.fileType = "pipe"

serial0.fileName = "\\.\pipe\com_1"

serial0.tryNoRxLoss = "FALSE"

serial0.autodetect = "FALSE"

serial0.pipe.endPoint = "server"

For QEmu, you'd do something like -serial pipe:\\.\pipe\com_1. Then you can attach WinDbg to the VM and see the debug messages. But anyway, I've got the day today to go through and keep hacking away. I apologize if the driver has not worked for you yet, but I was anxious to release it ASAP as soon as I saw a MEMDISK in Device Manager. :)

As soon as I have it running where it's actually been booted to the MEMDISK, I will most certainly provide the step-by-step. Your procedures looked good, though, from what I read.

joakim: You said that the VM had a BSoD after you installed the driver. I would not expect that, since my development VM did not crash with the driver installed... Do you have a NIC installed?

cdob: ramdisk.sys is not required at all.

We'll get to the bottom of this. It's brand-spanking new, so thanks for your tests and reports! I'm hoping for some progress today.

- Sha0 Miller

#57 joakim

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 08:23 PM

I have now done some more testing. By changing the disk type from ide to scsi it never bsod on a real install in vmware, but I don't understand how to actually make use of it on such a system. Here's a screenshot of device manager in an xp vm; Posted Image
The exact same system was then copied to a hdd image and loaded with memdisk, but then crashed bsod ..7B.

Numerous tests later with bartpe builds (moa/2k3) with different values inside txtsetup.sif, I can confirm like cdob that all my PE-based attempts crash with bsod ..7E.

Yesterday, I tried the Scsi.Load incorporation and noted that my BartPE crashed because NDIS.SYS was not loaded.

But did it not crash if ndis.sys was loaded? I have checked that all tried vm's have nic installed (as usual). How can I know for sure that it is loaded (before or after aoe32.sys)? What where your exact entries in txtsetup.sif?

joakim: I would have guessed that your VM image had a NIC installed. So if you still bluescreened, I need to know why. Since you are using a VM, you could add /SOS /DEBUG /DEBUGPORT=COM1 /BAUDRATE=115200 to your BOOT.INI, as well as the following to your VM's .vmx file (which assumes VMware):

serial0.present = "TRUE"

serial0.fileType = "pipe"

serial0.fileName = "\\.\pipe\com_1"

serial0.tryNoRxLoss = "FALSE"

serial0.autodetect = "FALSE"

serial0.pipe.endPoint = "server"

I can give it a try, but must admit I have never used windbg before. That said, I have been using olly and ida on apps, so maybe should not be that hard to figure out..., but please make a quick description of process.

but I was anxious to release it ASAP as soon as I saw a MEMDISK in Device Manager. :D

What do you mean by that? Like the screenshot above reveals, I did not have any memdisk there, only the aoe32??

Joakim

#58 joakim

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 08:45 PM

Some details on my loading process;

Grub4dos loads image with memdisk from iso/cd or hdd with entry;

kernel (cd)/memdisk raw

initrd (cd)/450.dsk

or

kernel (cd)/memdisk raw

initrd (hd0,0)/450.dsk

Then bootsector in disk image points to grldr in root of image with menu.lst like this;

root (hd0,0)

chainloader (hd0,0)/I386/ntldr

I am using patched setupldr.bin to use I386 instead of minint (but should not make any difference to the issue)...

Hope this helps a little.

Joakim

#59 joakim

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 09:41 PM

Some debug information after my first ever driver debug session in vmware (bartpe/moa). Debuglog attached.

Joakim

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#60 Sha0

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 10:42 PM

joakim:

Very nice work! Your debug log confirms that NDIS.SYS was not loaded by the booting OS. I've been doing more coding today, but there's more to be done.

In your screen-shot, you show what's in SCSI and RAID controllers, but your attached MEMDISK will show under Disk Drives. If you choose View -> Devices by Connection, the MEMDISK will show as a node on the AoE bus.

HOWEVER, I'm not sure that you booted that OS with a MEMDISK attached. You did describe that your boot process looked like this:
GRUB4DOS -> MEMDISK -> GRUB4DOS -> NTLDR on HD 0:0.
I'm confused as to whether the "NTLDR on HD 0:0" step is referring to the MEMDISK or to your internal HDD. For example, to actually prove to yourself that this driver is getting there, boot a 1.44 MB floppy image with FAT12 on it and SYSLINUX installed, and use chain.c32 from the SYSLINUX boot: prompt to chain to your real HDD Windows that has the aoe32.sys driver installed. When your HDD Windows finishes booting, you can look in Device Manager and My Computer to be pleasantly surprised.

For now, forget about doing anything with a Windows PE. You'd have to make sure NDIS.SYS was loaded by the PE. It would involve changing your TXTSETUP.SIF to include it. I'm moving towards removing the dependency on NDIS.SYS, but re-working V.'s great WinAoE code is a fair challenge for a first-time Windows driver writer.

Try the
GRUB4DOS -> MEMDISK -> virtual floppy -> SYSLINUX -> CHAIN.C32 -> real HDD
out, it should give you some hope to see the virtual floppy as an HDD in the booted Windows (though it won't be the C: drive).

- Sha0 Miller

#61 karyonix

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Posted 22 August 2009 - 03:16 AM

Progress report on my new RAM disk driver, named "firadisk" for now.
It works as SCSI port driver like WinAOE.
It was written from scratch with some algorithm from ImDisk, WinAOE.
Currently it can use GRUB4DOS's mem drive. The virtual drive was visible in Disk Management and can be re-partitioned, formated, use as other disk.
It has been tested with 16MB, 24MB hard disk images loaded with map --mem and seems to work.
Booting has not been tested yet.
No Floppy, CD-ROM emulation for now.

There is a problem with detection of INT13 handler.
If the driver is loaded early when the computer boot (after restart) it can see GRUB4DOS's INT13 handler and its data.
If the driver is loaded later after boot process complete (new install or update driver but not restarted yet), it can read interrupt vector table but cannot find GRUB4DOS's INT13 handler and data. There are only zeroes at the memory pointed to by interrupt vector 0x13. I don't know why it is overwritten, is the memory there reserved or is it free and is allocated by other programs.

UPDATE:
Successful boot using GRUB4DOS map --mem and FiraDisk with 1GB compressed NTFS disk image in harddisk in Windows Virtual PC.

#62 bilou_gateux

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Posted 22 August 2009 - 08:52 AM

Progress report on my new RAM disk driver, named "firadisk" for now.
It works as SCSI port driver like WinAOE.
It was written from scratch with some algorithm from ImDisk, WinAOE.
Currently it can use GRUB4DOS's mem drive. The virtual drive was visible in Disk Management and can be re-partitioned, formated, use as other disk.
It has been tested with 16MB, 24MB hard disk images loaded with map --mem and seems to work.

UPDATE:
Successful boot using GRUB4DOS map --mem and FiraDisk with 1GB compressed NTFS disk image in harddisk in Windows Virtual PC.


Could you write your own topic and post your binaries and a small tutorial to start.

I'm volunteer to try it if i have detailled instructions how to use it. currently i don't know what to add to grub4dos menu.lst to play with memdisk images.

I just added GRLDR to my boot.ini on my HDD system partition.

#63 joakim

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Posted 22 August 2009 - 09:10 AM

Successful boot using GRUB4DOS map --mem and FiraDisk with 1GB compressed NTFS disk image in harddisk in Windows Virtual PC.

That sounds good. You should start your own thread and I will be willing to test this driver too if you upload it.

Joakim

#64 karyonix

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Posted 22 August 2009 - 11:11 AM

Could you write your own topic and post your binaries and a small tutorial to start.

I'm volunteer to try it if i have detailled instructions how to use it. currently i don't know what to add to grub4dos menu.lst to play with memdisk images.

I just added GRLDR to my boot.ini on my HDD system partition.

That sounds good. You should start your own thread and I will be willing to test this driver too if you upload it.

Joakim

I just post here as follow-up of my previous post after I were absent from here for a whole month.
Now, it's time to start a separate topic.
Here is the link for my new topic -- http://www.boot-land...?showtopic=8804

#65 joakim

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Posted 22 August 2009 - 09:32 PM

Your debug log confirms that NDIS.SYS was not loaded by the booting OS.

How can you tell that from the log?

I'm confused as to whether the "NTLDR on HD 0:0" step is referring to the MEMDISK or to your internal HDD. For example, to actually prove to yourself that this driver is getting there, boot a 1.44 MB floppy image with FAT12 on it and SYSLINUX installed, and use chain.c32 from the SYSLINUX boot: prompt to chain to your real HDD Windows that has the aoe32.sys driver installed.

The "chainloader (hd0,0)/I386/ntldr" entry was pointing to the memdisk. But switching over to grldr inside the memdisk and let grldr point to the real HDD with menu.lst;
root (hd1,0)

chainloader (hd1,0)/ntldr

did not work and gave error message "invalid boot.ini" and "ntdetect.com failed".

Could you please show sample syslinux.cfg for such entry (I'm complete syslinux noob)?

For now, forget about doing anything with a Windows PE. You'd have to make sure NDIS.SYS was loaded by the PE. It would involve changing your TXTSETUP.SIF to include it.

I don't understand where in TXTSETUP.SIF to include it?

Keep up the good work!

btw, one last question; when debugging drivers, are the symbol files supposed to match the host or guest OS?

Joakim

#66 Sha0

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Posted 23 August 2009 - 09:32 AM

Try the latest version in my link! I just tested:

  • Building a BartPE .ISO
  • Booting a VMware Player with the .ISO as the booted ODD media
  • Installing the BartPE to the VM's HDD (just big enough to hold the BartPE files)
  • Modifying TXTSETUP.SIF to include AOE32.SYS in the Scsi.Load section
  • Installing GRUB4DOS to the HDD's MBR
  • Copying GRLDR to the NTFS partition
  • Converting the VM's .vmdk to a raw image with 'qemu-img convert foo.vmdk -O raw foo.hdd'
  • Removing the VM's .vmdk from the .vmx file so the VM has no HDD
  • PXE-booting the VM
  • Chain-loading gPXE
  • Using gPXE's HTTP support to download the raw HDD as initrd ('initrd http://webserver/foo.hdd')
  • Downloading MEMDISK 3.82 and using the "raw" option ('kernel http://webserver/memdisk raw')
  • Booting MEMDISK ('boot')
  • From the GRUB4DOS, did 'root (hd0,0)' followed by 'chainloader /ntldr' where NTLDR was actually SETUPLDR
  • 'boot' and... Voila!

At least it works now for booting... I still have lots of code reworking to do in order to abstract the AoE-specifics into appropriate places. Then the driver could be used for, let's say, VDK, VFD, httpdisk, software RAID, etc.

Let me know how it goes! :)

- Shao Miller

#67 Icecube

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Posted 23 August 2009 - 09:57 AM

Driver can be downloaded from:
http://www.boot-land...?...ost&p=75377

#68 joakim

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 06:05 PM

Just tried another attempt loading complete disk image with "memdisk raw".

Now it crashed with BSOD ...7F instead of 7E.

Debug log attached.

Will now move over to pxe testing for this driver.

Joakim

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#69 Sha0

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 07:06 PM

joakim: I really appreciate you testing this driver out! I thought for sure that karyonix' GRUB4DOS memory-mapping driver a couple of days ago would put this one under a rock forever. Heh.

You asked about symbol files earlier: I fill in my File -> Symbol File Path... text field with:
c:\windows\iscsi2\symbols\sys;srv*c:\tmp*http://msdl.microsoft.com/download/symbols
You can put .PDB files corresponding to the debugging target system's .SYS files inside your C:\TMP\ directory on the debugging host system. AOE32.PDB can go in there.

You asked about how I could tell what your problem in your last debug log was from the log: Because the point of the crash was exactly where NDIS.SYS functions were being called. Protocol_XXX() lines make use of NDIS.SYS.

Your new debugging log escapes me for now, but I'll look into it a little later today. All I can recall is that there was a point where I ran into trouble if I "debug-break"ed the target system before it was fully booted. In both of the debug logs you've submitted, it appears that your debugger is set to request an "Initial Breakpoint" as soon as the OS loads, so this could be a problem. Please try removing the /DEBUG and /DEBUGPORT= and /BAUDRATE= switches, just to see if it makes any difference.

I think that a nice HowTo is in order, so... One can likely use very similar instructions karyonix provided for his GRUB4DOS-memory-mapped-drive-Windows-driver to "inject" this driver into a Windows. Thanks again, karyonix! Besides that, I think the MEMDISK specifics should be explained a bit more...

Here's a sample syslinux.cfg file for use with SYSLINUX on a FAT[12|16|32] filesystem (floppy or HDD partition):
DEFAULT memdiskxp

LABEL memdskxp

  KERNEL memdisk

  APPEND raw

  INITRD memdskxp.hdd
A pxelinux.cfg/default file would look very similar. An isolinux.cfg file would look very similar, also.

memdskxp.hdd in the sample file above should be a raw (dd-style; sector-by-sector) HDD image. I've changed the logic a bit so it shouldn't matter what boot-loader(s) is(/are) installed on the HDD image. The driver looks for a signature in MEMDISK's code now, instead of at the most recent INT 0x13 vector.

From GRUB[4DOS], assuming memdskxp.hdd is in the root directory on a bootable CD, you could have the following in your menu.lst file:
root (cd)

kernel memdisk raw

initrd /memdskxp.hdd
To "inject" into a Windows XP PE environment, TXTSETUP.SIF's ScsiClass.Load section could go something like:
[ScsiClass.Load]

cdrom  = cdrom.sys

disk   = disk.sys

floppy = sfloppy.sys

ramdisk = ramdisk.sys

aoe32 = aoe32.sys
For a full XP installation (not /MININT, not with SETUPLDR), you can simply install the driver using the instructions in the ReadMe.txt file included in the driver download.

I will try to get to the bottom of why the driver crashes when you have a debugger attached, joakim. Thanks again for helping to test this; it helps with development.

- Shao Miller

#70 joakim

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 08:14 PM

Changing txtsetup.sif to no debug settings makes no difference, at least on a memdisked PE-build.

Interestingly, the screen shown by the /SOS switch reports that available ram has been adjusted by the size of the memdisk. Total allocated ram in vmware is 972 mb, memdisk size is 431 mb, and before bsod windows reports available ram to 541 mb.

Did minor changes to txtsetup.sif without any difference. Attached is debug log, now with symbols in place (except ntoskrnl.exe, cannot figure out how to).

I'm using command line of windbg with;

windbg -v -y H:\Symbols\2k3sp2\temp -b -k com:pipe,port=\\.\pipe\com_1,resets=0

Sometimes it crashes if attached to vmware too early in the bootprocess.

Keep up the good work. Will allways be nice to have two of these drivers with different capabilities!!

Note. The FiraDisk driver currently crashes with memdisk.

Joakim

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#71 Sha0

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 08:14 PM

joakim: I just noticed that it appears that you were trying out Windows Server 2003. Was this a mish-mashed Windows XP environment with some Windows Server 2003 components? If so, which 2003 components did you use? Just the kernel? SETUPLDR? HAL.DLL? Anything else? I'd like to try to reproduce your crash, since my testing has been XP SP2, so far. Was your image approximately 431.43310546875 MB? - Sha0

#72 joakim

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 08:20 PM

joakim: I just noticed that it appears that you were trying out Windows Server 2003. Was this a mish-mashed Windows XP environment with some Windows Server 2003 components? If so, which 2003 components did you use? Just the kernel? SETUPLDR? HAL.DLL? Anything else? I'd like to try to reproduce your crash, since my testing has been XP SP2, so far. Was your image approximately 431.43310546875 MB? - Sha0


The log is from a PE-build based on server 2003 sp2 sources (moa).

My image was 431 Mb equivalent to 452 390 400 bytes. I'll do an xpsp2 test later.

Joakim

#73 joakim

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 09:19 PM

Ran another PE-build, this time based on xpsp2. Several tests with minor tweaks all produce same crash - BSOD ..7B.

Hmm, different from 2k3sp2.

Attached is debug log.

Joakim

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#74 Sha0

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 09:48 PM

All right. True to the thread's title, I've updated the link at http://www.boot-land...?...ost&id=9071 with the latest version of this driver. The archive now includes a particular MEMDISK version to use, in order to rule out an incompatible MEMDISK while people are testing.

This version also supports a single GRUB4DOS memory-mapped disk drive. That is, you should be able to "discover" and attach both a MEMDISK as well as a GRUB4DOS memory-mapped drive with this version. Please test!

Abstraction is going well, so I'm hoping that things like a VDK-style disk can be "plugged-in" relatively easily.

Enjoy.

- Shao Miller

#75 was_jaclaz

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 10:10 PM

Abstraction is going well, so I'm hoping that things like a VDK-style disk can be "plugged-in" relatively easily.


Good News. :frusty:

:rofl: go Sha0 go! :rofl:

:rofl:

jaclaz




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