Sunday, March 4, 2012

A new kernel for the dockstar

The dockstar is a small embedded system originally used as a small NAS system. With some effort it is possible to install linux on such a system. When running gentoo it might be necessary to update the kernel from time to time.

All we need is a kernel .config file and a short summary how to update.

Step 1: getting the kernel
emerge --sync
emerge gentoo-sources
Will retrieve the newest sources. As kernel updates will happen rarely you might want to mask newer kernels from portage. Do this by adding following line to /etc/portage/package.mask.
Step 2: Kernel configuration

Switch to your new kernel:
eselect kernel list
eselect kernel set <number>
Now you could either download one from the config files below or config the kernel on your own.
cd /usr/src/linux
make menuconfig
After configuration you should have a .config file in your linux directory.

Step 3: Build the kernel
make clean uImage modules modules_install
Step 4: Install the kernel

As you might have a running kernel already its best to backup this version first:
mount /boot
mv /boot/uImage /boot/uImage.bak
If your new kernel does not boot you can revert to the old kernel on another system.
cp /usr/src/linux/arch/arm/boot/uImage /boot
Now cross your fingers and reboot the system.